Design and Build Contract

Whatever it is that you are planning on building, you are going to want to make sure that you approach it in the most sensible and appropriate way possible. There are a lot of considerations that are going to be important to make as a part of ensuring that, but one which is probably going to be particularly important is ensuring that you are using the right kind of procurement. One kind which many have heard of, but which they might not know as well as possible, is design and build. In this article, we are going to discuss what design and build is, and when it is the best option for you to use - along with some of the occasions when it might not be quite ideal.

What Is It?

First off, let’s take a look at a basic definition of what design and build actually is. There are many ways to approach a project of any kind, but one which is often going to be particularly useful is to hire someone to pretty much manage the whole thing from start to finish. With a design and build project, that is exactly what you have. A design and build project is designed by the professionals, who can even come up with the starting idea if necessary, who then also oversee the entire project from start to finish.

Clearly, that is something that might be very useful for many different projects, and that is certainly the case of many. But let’s look in a little more detail at how this is actually likely to work out in most cases.

In Detail

So, in a design and build contract, the contractor is responsible for a lot more than in many other kinds of traditional contracts. In design and build, you are getting someone - or, more likely, a team - who will deal with:

  • Initial ideation.
  • Design.
  • Planning.
  • Organization.
  • Control.
  • Construction.
  • Completion.

Obviously, in hiring someone on such a contract, you are placing a lot of faith on them, so you are always going to have to choose them carefully. But as long as you do, there is plenty that you might find you get from this, which you might not traditionally get from other kinds of contracts. Let’s take a look now at what some of the major benefits to this kind of contract might be, should you decide to go for it.

The Main Benefits

If it is starting to sound like an attractive proposal already, then you might already have some idea in mind of why this might be such a good way to complete a project. Because you are effectively handing over responsibility of the project to one person or organization, you only have one point of contact that you need to worry about. That can be very useful, as it makes a lot of the process much easier indeed, compared to having to chase down a number of people if something should go wrong or you just want to know what’s going on. That is certainly useful.

Useful too is the fact that a design and build project is one in which you don’t have to do anything. So if you are not keen on designing the thing yourself, and you just want it done, then you will find that this is an easy way to make that happen. This ease is something that very often draws people to this kind of build contract, and it is certainly something to consider.

But you also have a strong flexibility, and you can pretty much decide as closely as you like how much you are going to allow the contractor to be in charge of, and how much you want to help out yourself. If you happen to have an idea for the design, for instance, you can and should communicate this with your contractor, and you can work together in this way. This kind of partnership is something that you don’t always get, but with a design and build process it is often the norm. You are working with the same people from start to finish, so you can be sure that you are going to be able to develop a strong working relationship in no time.

If you need to make an early start on a site, then this kind of contract is especially useful too. Similarly, if you feel the need to try and minimize all forms of risk, then having this kind of contract is probably going to be the way that you decide to go. And if your project is likely to be extremely complex in a technical sense, then having this kind of help is going to be essential in many ways.

Another main advantage that draws many people in to this kind of contract is that you can generally be sure on the final price of the entire project much earlier than you would normally be able to know this information. That can do wonders for your peace of mind.

When It’s Not Perfect

All that being said, it is not the perfect solution for every single project, and it’s important to appreciate when it might be better considering something else instead. If you don’t want to commit to a concept early on, then it might not be the best kind of contract for you at this time. Similarly, if you are not happy with relinquishing control, for whatever reason that might be relevant to you, then it is unlikely that you are going to use this kind of design and build service at all. Finally, a design and build project is not always going to provide you with the same kind of ability to change things at a later date, so that is something to bear in mind when you are considering what type of project contract to use.

As you can see, however, in many cases this is a contract type that is going to be very useful indeed. For more information, visit

Posted on December 13th 2019

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