Raise your hand if you think you’re too busy. There are so many things on your plate: Taking your kids to school, attending meetings and doctor’s appointments, running your business, buying groceries, making time for your family. We get it. We all have long To Do lists, and it’s normal to forget a thing here or there. But you know what you should always have as a priority? Paying your contractor on time.
Busting Construction Myths
You may think that just because you made a large payment prior to starting the project, that check will tide everyone over until you get around to making the next scheduled payment. But let’s look at things closely: Whether you’re building something from scratch or renovating your business, there will be plenty of people involved in the project: Architects, engineers, project managers, construction workers, plumbers, electricians, landscapers… All of them have to get paid. In addition, there are materials and administration costs.
Your contract established a payment schedule for a reason, and once you sign that agreement, it’s set in stone and you are legally bound by it. Think about it: would you continue doing business with a client who continuously fails to pay you on time? Would you find that type of behavior acceptable only because they paid you once or twice in the past? Bills don’t get paid with goodwill; and everyone’s got them.
You may be working with someone who’s done business with you in the past and who may give you some leeway if you make a late payment. But not honoring your payment agreement is not only the easiest way to burn bridges, but it will also cost you extra in the long run: If your contractor takes you to court, and they can prove that you owe them the money, you’ll likely have to reimburse your contractor for the cost of the lawsuit, service of process, and maybe even attorney’s fees. Potential clients will be able to read about the lawsuit when they do a Google search about your business. You might get a dent on your reputation within the construction industry… and good luck finding someone to work with you in the future without requiring an unusually large sum upfront.
So be responsible and keep those bridges intact. After all, if you want your business to look good, you need construction workers to get the job done.