The conclusion of a construction defect case generally marks the beginning of the repair process for community associations. Although each association’s situation will be different, the repair process can generally be described in three steps.
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1. Build the Team
The first step the association needs to undertake is to build a team of professionals that will assist the association through the repair process. Although it varies by association, that team of professionals could include the following: general contractor, construction manager, attorney, community manager, insurance broker, certified public accountant, and lender. The development of the necessary team members will depend on the circumstances of each individual association. For example, if the association does not need a loan to complete repairs, a lender will not be necessary.
2. Review the Bids
Second, the association will probably have to obtain and analyze various contracts and bids. Community managers can often assist associations with the coordination and acquisition of contracts and bids and determine what repairs it can or should perform. Attorneys can assist with the review of the proposed contract with the association’s selected general contractor and/or construction manager. Attorneys can also assist in reviewing the requirements of the governing documents and to work with a community manager or the homeowners if issues or concerns arise during the repair process. Although project requirements can vary, it may be generally advisable to hire a construction manager.
3. Select a General Contractor
Third, once an association has determined the needed scope of repairs, the association will have to select a general contractor. The selection process for a general contractor will vary by association. Before beginning the process, associations should review their governing documents to determine whether the governing documents dictate the process an association must follow to select a contractor. If the process is not dictated, which is often the case, there are generally two types of contractor selection processes that are available to associations: a competitive bid process or a negotiated bid process. A competitive bid process occurs when an association requests qualified general contractors to submit bids. A negotiated bid process occurs when an association selects a general contractor and then negotiates a contract. If an association has hired an expert to help, the association should work closely with its expert to determine the best bid process to follow when selecting a general contractor. Once a general contractor has been selected and the association has finished building its team, repairs can begin and homeowners will be on the road to recovery.