Many are familiar with the uncoordinated coming together of different construction companies on a major construction project. The consequences of this are poor communication between the unions and great confusion. Not only the client suffers from this, but also the quality of the construction work. By using a total contractor, these problems can be avoided and the construction process can be simplified.
What does a total contractor do?
A total contractor undertakes to take over all construction work from a client. This means that the term “total contractor” is used when the general contractor also assumes responsibility for all planning services and (preliminary) design planning. Like the general contractor, the total contractor does not undertake any construction work itself, but commissions subcontractors to do this.
The total contractor in comparison
In contrast to the total contractor, the total contractor also performs all construction work himself. Only in rare cases are construction services passed on to subcontractors. The difference to the general contractor lies in the fact that the total contractor also takes over all planning services.
When do I commission a total contractor?
It is typical that the TU or TÜ takes over the design planning, approval planning, construction supervision and construction of the object up to the handover of the keys. Consequently, only a TU or TÜ should be commissioned if the client wishes to assign all these tasks. If only part of the construction is to be taken over, such as only the construction work, a general contractor should rather be considered.
Advantages of a total contractor and a general contractor
With a TU or TÜ, the client has only one contact person. This makes communication extremely easy for the client. The contract is also only concluded with this one contact person. The coordination effort is thus reduced to a minimum from the client’s point of view. Consequently, there is also only one liability partner, who is liable for everything that does not go according to the contract. The client only has claims against the general contractor. The latter in turn has claims against the subcontractors.
Disadvantages of handing over the construction work to a general contractor or a total contractor
The only disadvantage is that there is no control body, i.e. the entire control lies with the TU or TÜ as the sole contact person of the owner. However, this can be remedied by regular consultation and contractual arrangements. In addition, there is a warranty period of five years. Within this period, defects can also be reported retrospectively to the total acceptor or total contractor, who must then rectify them. If you want to ensure that all tasks are checked during construction, you can also commission an external expert.
Conclusion: The total contractor thus takes over all planning services and construction services, but hands over the execution of the construction services to subcontractors and does not carry them out himself. The total contractor takes over not only the entire planning services but also the construction services and carries out a large part of them himself.
Image author: deniskalinichenko