All posts in General Contract Administration

Less is More: Three tips < Change Orders

John Pawson home

Minimalists ask the question: How much can you strip away from an item — painting, sculpture, building, furniture — without losing its essential purpose and identity?

Your projects don’t have to look like John Pawson’s Home but applying a minimalist frame of mind to design and construction drawings can lead to a reduction in the number of change orders during the contract administration phase. Read More…

Owner: Patron of Architecture


We often dream of the perfect patron, the client or owner who is a connoisseur of culture, art,  architecture and the finer things in life. They are highly intelligent, wealthy and provide the architect with total design freedom and don’t forget an unlimited budget. All that they ask for in return is for the Architect to create a great design and to watch over its construction. There may not be a more famous home or benefactor relationship than that of Edgar Kaufmann and Frank Lloyd Wright and the design of Kaufmann’s summer home Fallingwater.

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Quick Guide: Modern Contractor

Eichler Post & Beam Home, San Raphael CA

Some notable Modernist architects have started their careers as builders or contractors. A few that stand out include Craig Ellwood and his cool Case Study House # 17 or Alfred Newman Beadle and the original Case Study Apartment #1.

Another popular contractor/developer who is probably more famous than the architects he hired, is Joseph Eichler and his popular modernist homes he built in California. Unfortunately, (or fortunately) not all architects get the chance to build for themselves, and rely on the contractor to bring the designs to life.  So what exactly can be expected from the contractor on the project? Read More…

God is in the details – SOV

god-is-in-detailsSo how do you objectively evaluate and approve a progress claim that is accompanied with a schedule of values that contains broad categories such as concrete, windows and doors, or my favourite general requirements.

How do you know doors and windows are 50% complete? If there is only one dollar value for all doors and windows in the project, you don’t know how much the doors are versus the windows versus the hardware.  (Hopefully the hardware doesn’t cost as much as the door.) Or even the difference between the exterior doors or interior doors. These questions are a must, that you really need to ask the contractor right at the start before certifying any progress payments. Read More…