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Why use a contract?

In the current climate it’s more important than ever that any improvement or extension work undertaken is fully protected from rogue contractors and spiralling costs.

The good news is that by using a building contract like the JCT Home Owner Contract, you can take a low-cost preventative measure that can help provide security for your investment, potentially saving you thousands in legal bills.

Which contract to choose?

There are a variety of building contracts suitable for use on home improvement projects available from a range of industry organisations and federations.

With a JCT Home Owner Contract you have the security of knowing the contract is produced by organisation with an 80-year history of creating standard contracts for the construction industry and is a name your contractor will be familiar with.

In addition, the JCT Home Owner Contracts are designed specifically to be used by the home owner or developer.  Written in plain English and easy to fill out, JCT Home Owner Contracts are practical, comprehensive and treat both parties fairly.

Depending on whether you are hiring a builder, or a builder plus a project manager to oversee the work, you can buy a standalone Building Contract or the Building Contract and Consultancy Agreement Pack of two contracts. The wording is adapted in each case to ensure that each party understands their role and responsibilities.

What do the contracts cover?

The JCT Homeowner Contracts cover every aspect of the job including material costs, when payments will be made, the time frames and the access the contractor will have to your home.

A JCT Homeowner Building Contract is divided in two parts and covers:

The arrangements for the work

  • The work to be done
  • Planning permission
  • Building regulations and party walls
  • Using facilities on the premises
  • Price
  • Payment
  • The working period
  • Product guarantees, Insurance
  • Working hours
  • Occupation and security of the premises
  • Disputes
The conditions

  • Contractor’s responsibilities
  • Customer’s responsibilities
  • Health and safety
  • Changing the work details
  • Extending the working period
  • Payment
  • Contractor’s continuing responsibility
  • Bringing the contract to an end
  • Right to cancel
  • Insolvency
  • Other rights and remedies
  • Law of the contract

Take a look at a sample contract

How a JCT Home Owner Contract can make a difference

No matter the size and scope of your home improvement project, the best reason to use a contract is to have the comfort and security of legal protection for your renovations and the investment you are making in your home.

The benefits of a contract also extend to helping you plan out the project and think through each aspect. You can then record the details of the job in one place so it is 100% clear what’s expected and when, for both you and your contractor.

Find out more and get guidance for your project

Visit to find out more or buy and download a JCT Home Owner Contract.

You’ll also find advice that covers the key stages of any project and will help you to cover all the bases.

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