Case Studies

What's the Difference Between Subcontractors & Contractors

Subcontractors & Contractors

When you’re getting started on the planning and negotiating stages of a construction project, you’ll probably find yourself with a list of unfamiliar terms and titles. One sometimes confusing distinction is that between the general contractor and subcontractor. Here are the differences and the purpose of each.

General Contractor

The general contractor is the person or company you hire to spearhead the entire project. You enter into a contract with them in order to accomplish the construction services you need. In most cases, they will coordinate hiring any subcontractors themselves.

Contractors are the ‘labor and services’ component of the construction project, but you should hash out all details beforehand and only enter into a contract if you feel completely understood and trusting. Details will include the costs associated with the subcontractors in addition to other expenses of the project.

What Are Good Questions to Ask a General Contractor?

asking contractor questions

Looking for a general contractor for your upcoming project? The first step is to make sure you have all questions answered. You probably (and understandably) have a lot of questions, but perhaps you aren’t sure how to ask them or what to prioritize. We’ve compiled this guide to help you determine what to ask your general contractor in order to get your project underway.

The Important Questions to Ask

About The Company

You may have researched and interviewed the company you’re using, but it’s not too late to learn more about who you’re working with. You can ask for specific examples of projects the contractor has worked on, particularly those that are similar to your own. And, definitely ask about the company itself if you’d like to know more about it.

4 Resources to Help You Find a General Contractor

hiring a general contractor for building construction

Construction spending and demand continue to rise and show no signs of stopping, which is both good news and bad news for anyone looking to begin a construction project. On the one hand, there are plenty of general contractors out there and plenty of information about any given firm or contractor. On the other, it can be tricky to find a general contractor who fits your needs, budget, and timeline. Even though it can be tough to know where to turn, there are plenty of resources to help you find the best match. Let’s take a look at some of them now.


Asking for referrals from friends, acquaintances, and even folks online can give you an idea of some names or firms that have performed well in the past. A good word from someone you trust is probably the most useful resource when you’re on the hunt for someone to do a big job, but even then, you should do a little more homework.

How Construction Services Handle Pre-Construction and Project Planning

building supplies for construction services

If you’re planning a construction project in the Pacific Northwest or surrounding states, Benchmark Construction has you covered. Licensed in California, Idaho, Utah, Oregon, Washington, and Montana, Benchmark offers a full spectrum of construction services to ensure you have support every step of the way. But what exactly do construction services offer at the onset of the project? Let’s take a closer look.

Setup and Planning: Pre-Construction Phase

Pre-construction is a critical timeframe for any construction project. This is when all parties gain an understanding of expectations, requirements, and potential challenges. Some of the key components in this stage include:

How to Start a Project Before the Holidays

construction during the holidays

The holiday season is quickly approaching AGAIN, and it’s time to start thinking about that project you need to have done (or at least mostly done) before the holidays hit. We see it all too often where a company fully plans to have a project done by the holidays, but then things come to a halt at a critical stage because it’s time for vacations and/or family time.

Don’t Cause Undue Stress

If you know you need to make significant headway on or finish a project by the new year, start early! Don’t be that person holding up your companies project when deadlines need to be met or approvals and bids are needed while you are away for the holidays. Get it done in the months leading up to the holidays so that you can rest assured it’s being finished and you can off into the sunset without the stress.

Is it Time for a Major Building Restoration or just Preventative Maintenance?

carpenter fixing roof

Mortar joints are popping out. Steel is visibly rusting. Cracks in the concrete are growing. Sound familiar?

No building structure made of concrete, steel or masonry is indestructible. Your building gives an impression, but it’s also your first defense against outside forces as simple as the weather. Even with routine maintenance and upkeep, if you allow defects to go for too long, your structural integrity could be at risk.

Check for Structural Integrity

Keeping an eye on minor issues when you have preventative assessments of your structure is crucial. Routine maintenance can save you money and time, but only if you are willing to fix the minor issues before they require a full-blown restoration.

Take a walk around your building and pay attention to things that could potentially be issues and make a note of them. Watch them over time to see if they worsen. Here are some keep areas in buildings to keep an eye on:

Looking for Construction Services? Go With Who You Know!

construction hats and paperwork on table

You've been happy with your choice of general contractor for your commercial construction project, so why not use their construction services for ongoing upgrades, remodels and facility management? The benefit of insider information about your building project is invaluable, including the names of subcontractors, types of systems installed, potential problem areas, and your building's unique requirements.

Here's why going with who you know is a great choice for all of your ongoing construction services needs.

3 Ways to Avoid Building Construction Delays

construction delay frustration

It's not uncommon for commercial building construction projects to take longer than the customer anticipated. One seemingly harmless delay can have a ripple effect that puts the entire job off course.

Check out these tips to avoid common bottlenecks and delays in your building construction project's timeline.

1. Understand Your Local Permitting Process

No matter where your building construction project is taking place, it's critical to understand the permitting process. In almost all cases, there's no realistic way to fast-track building permits. Since procedures vary from one city to the next, working with a building construction company that's familiar with the area can make a big difference. They'll know how much time to figure into the overall plan so you won't be faced with any unpleasant surprises.

Finding the Best Construction Services Provider for Your Building Project

planning meeting for construction services

After you've decided to move forward with your building project, the next step in the process is to partner with a reputable construction company. Since no two construction services providers are alike, this all-important decision may take some time.

Here are a few crucial tips to help you find a construction company with the services and reputation you deserve.

Reputation Matters.

In the highly competitive world of construction services, a few companies in the industry stand out above the rest. Here's why.


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