Every new home schedule needs to be in writing. It won’t do any good if the owner builder has the schedule in their head. Putting all of the building activities and dates down in spreadsheet format will allow every trade and supplier to understand how the home comes together. The dates will give them a reference point to get the project on their production or shipping schedule.
The only thing worse than not having a written schedule is having a schedule that’s never updated. If the dates are wrong, it will communicate the wrong message to the trades and suppliers. This will lead to lost time for travel, and potentially cost big money.
For example, let’s say your plumber is scheduled to go into the new home on Friday. They block out the day in their company schedule to do the work and send a crew out the house Friday morning. If they show up to the home and the job isn’t ready for them, they still need to pay their workers even if they don’t do any work. This will create extra costs for travel time. There will also be an opportunity cost for lost work because the day was set aside for this particular task. Many trade contractors have trip charges to cover these expenses which will ultimately affect your budget.
A new home schedule needs to be distributed to all parties. Since the schedule is in spreadsheet format, it can be emailed to all trades and suppliers. One other option is to create a website with the schedule for vendors to review. The only problem with this is, contractors will need to know when you update the schedule. In other words, if a change is made, they should be notified. For this reason, email is the preferred method for communicating the schedule.
Every professional builder knows that the new home schedule needs to take into consideration the trade capabilities. For example, if the trim carpenter is a one-man-band, the trim and door installation may take four days instead of two. We want to make sure the schedule reflects this extra time.
Building a new home can be a complicated process, but by using a schedule for communication, the overall quality will improve and build time will be shortened.