How to Sand Out Contractor Conflicts
To err is human. To quickly resolve an issue with your home contractor is divine. How you respond to a problem caused by your contractor (and/or the crew) can determine whether or not your budget, timeline and blood pressure remain intact.
Here are a few tips that will help:
NO CONFUSION: When an issue arises, put all the current issues on paper including your project expectations before you talk to your contractor. Also, stay focused on this current topic. There is no benefit to dumping by revisiting any past frustrations.
NO CROWDS: Don’t embarrass or ‘diss’ your contractor by yelling or discussing a problem in front of other employees or workers.
NO EMOTION: State the facts as you understand them and be open to hearing anything that you might have missed. Remember, the goal is to resolve the issue and get the job moving forward again, NOT winning an argument.
NO DISRESPECT: The best way to iron out differences with your contractor is to remain respectful and open to listening to his/her point-of-view. Before responding, repeat what you think was said to be sure you heard it right.
NO BLAME: Look more for ways to resolve an issue than to bicker over who was to blame. Again, the primary goal is not to win an argument. It’s to protect your timeline and budget.
NO DOUBT: When you and your contractor have resolved an issue with a plan of action, put it in writing and give a copy to your contractor.
NO WIN: If you and your contractor are not getting anywhere with your discussion, review your original contract to see if it holds any possible solutions.
NO WAITING: The longer you wait to discuss an issue, the more chance bad feelings and small problems will grow.