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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm curious as I'm looking into writing up an official contract to have each of my clients sign before I start a job. Up to now I just do verbal and written estimates and an invoice at the end of the job.

What are your thoughts on a contract and what should it contain?
 

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Yes. Get a good one
 

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Duh!!!!!!!

Let's see here, how many times have we covered this 1,000,002

Contract, Contract, Contract.

Need we say more?

Just wait till the day you wished you had one.
 

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I'm curious as I'm looking into writing up an official contract to have each of my clients sign before I start a job. Up to now I just do verbal and written estimates and an invoice at the end of the job.

What are your thoughts on a contract and what should it contain?
YOU NEVER HAVE A CUSTOMER "SIGN" a CONTRACT.....

YOU ALWAYS HAVE A CUSTOMER GIVE HIS "AUTHORIZATION".;);)
 

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Are we being punked right now? :jester: :laughing: Just messing with ya.

Yes ALWAYS a contract. I always knew that but I didn't realize the extent some of these guys go into on their contracts.

Detailed as possible without being a novel. Cover all your bases and then some.

Good luck!
 

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Yes you definitely need contracts these days.

Keep them simple, the more legalese there is the more there is for opposing counsel to attack. If you have a long, multi page contract full of legal mumbo jumbo you had better know what it all means. A friend of mine was in and he had a very elaborate contract. Very embarrassing when the judge asked him to explain portions of it & he couldn't.

Use the AIA contracts, well written, easy to understand and readily accepted. I know guys that have been using them for years.

http://www.aia.org/contractdocs/
 

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Contracts are for babies. I don't even need a hand shake. Just give me a nod or a hint that you want the work done and before you know it my company is there.

All kidding aside you MUST have all jobs AND change orders signed on a contract to cover you butt
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks guys. I figured it was pretty important. I haven't up to now cause my dad is tech-illiterate and never drew one up for his business. 15 yrs later and he still doesn't use one so when I started my company I didn't think of it. Now I'm on my third year and really pushing to have all my bases covered.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Everyone emphasizes importance of having a contract. Any thoughts on what to put in it? Simple but enough to cover my butt?
 

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Try and do a search on this site for contracts. There has been a good bit of discussion on it. Do a web search for "Mike Stone" or "Mark Up and Profit". I think he has a couple sample contracts out there.

Have your lawyer look it over. Don't have a lawyer? Now is a time to get one. While your getting that lawyer, might as well get that accountant also. How much you use them is up to you, but it is good to have them for the critical stuff.

Or see post #7.
 

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Don't forget the pet clause!

Not responsible for the dog, cat, gold fish.....

Last thing you want is to pay for their beloved pet. NO JOKE
This is exactly what I was talking about.:laughing:
 

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I guess every area and situation is different, I have had a successful business for 20 years and never had a contract. i have never been stiffed or cheated by any client. I have an agreement, [contract], by handshake, that my clients stay current on paying me every two weeks. I live in a rural area where everybody knows everybody. i try to do one job at a time and finish it. I am booked up for the next 2 years and don't plan on writing a contract in the future, There are still places like this in America where a handshake is a contract.
 

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mike gunderson said:
I guess every area and situation is different, I have had a successful business for 20 years and never had a contract. i have never been stiffed or cheated by any client. I have an agreement, [contract], by handshake, that my clients stay current on paying me every two weeks. I live in a rural area where everybody knows everybody. i try to do one job at a time and finish it. I am booked up for the next 2 years and don't plan on writing a contract in the future, There are still places like this in America where a handshake is a contract.
What amazing me isn't the handshake agreement. It's that someone is willing to wait 2 years for you to get their job done. Crazy. Here in NJ no1 likes a long wait lol
 
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