5 Reasons Why Construction Projects Fail

It’s common knowledge that construction and remodeling projects often take a significant amount of time, money, and resources in order to complete. But why is it that so many have the tendency to fail? In this blog post, we will explore the common reasons behind project failures while at the same time offering up some of the necessary tips and tricks you need in order to make sure your project gets completed exactly to your liking. 

1. INACCURATE ESTIMATES

Underestimating a project’s scope and budget requirements are two of the most common reasons why construction projects end up getting delayed, amended or axed altogether. With changing market conditions, miscalculations, and specification errors in the mix, it can certainly be overwhelming trying to keep up with the dynamics of the planning and construction process. However, with the right project management strategies in place, you can make sure to always stay within your budgets and deadlines. 

But what is considered the “right” project management strategy?

Thorough and dedicated project management is key to the success of your construction project. Having a team of eyes constantly double and triple-checking for errors and cost overruns is one of the most needed and valued parts of your project’s timeline. Have a detailed checklist and project plan in place so that, before placing any orders, you are absolutely sure no prices have fluctuated and that nothing goes overlooked. By doing so, you will have plenty of time to catch cost raises and either inform the owners of these changes or adjust the pricing in order to stay within budget.

2. SCOPE CREEP

When starting a construction or remodeling project, it is essential that you do your due diligence at the preliminary stages of the project before diving in with a contractor. If not, you can run into something called “scope creep”, which refers to the process in which the workload increases beyond the original agreement. Some common causes for this to occur include:

Client requests that don’t reflect the amount of work that was originally agreed upon.

Poor communication at the infant stages of the construction or remodeling project. 

Unclear specifications or ambiguity within the written agreement shared between client and contractor.

Ultimately, the number one goal of any project is the client’s satisfaction, however, this can become a bit tricky if the scope of the project is not thoroughly defined and discussed between the two parties involved. Planning in a dynamic manner and getting accurate information upfront will allow for the process to run far more smoothly while providing clear objectives to both parties about what needs to be accomplished. Oftentimes, terminology and agreements between contractor and client can be misconstrued or difficult to understand, so making sure that everything is written in a way that can be understood by both parties is the quickest and most effective way to avoid scope creep in your construction or remodeling project. 

3. DELAYS, DELAYS, DELAYS

Delays are a common, yet costly, occurrence in many building projects. With government approvals, permit delays, and site regulations being able to slow down the timeline of your project, it’s no question why delays are often seen as the kryptonite to successful, on-time completions. 

But how can you go about avoiding them?

Depending on where you are placed on the map, it may be necessary for you to consider union requirements and area-specific building codes before beginning your construction or remodeling project. On top of this, making sure that the right licenses are held and that thorough site surveys and investigations take place beforehand is an essential part of the planning process and will save you time and expenses during the subsequent stages of your project.

4. UNFORESEEN CONDITIONS

Sure, some things simply can’t be avoided. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t have a plan in place for when things go awry. Unforeseen conditions such as natural disasters, structural or design issues, mold, asbestos, etc. are just a few of the problems that can run up costs and/or delay your construction or remodeling project. And because you can’t necessarily control or anticipate these situations entirely, it is essential that you have a plan in place beforehand so that both parties are on the same page when issues do arise. 

Some ways that can help you prepare for the unknown are by having proper insurance in place to minimize damage costs, and by hiring an experienced contractor who can predict and identify the common signs associated with these problems. You should work with your contractor to set up a pricing plan so that when disasters strike, you will have a safety net in place that accounts for unforeseen costs. 

5. COMMUNICATION GAPS

Communication is everything when it comes to successfully completing a construction or remodeling project on time and within budget. It can truly make or break your project. Without a chain of command in place to make sure that each party is getting the right information at the right time on designs, plans, schedules, etc., more often than not, costly issues and delays in the project can present themselves.

That said, it is critical to the success of your construction or remodeling project to communicate any changes, problems, or requests that may come up during the planning and construction process. By establishing a chain of command, every player is held accountable for their duties, which in turn, keeps everyone on the same page and allows for clear and concise communication throughout the entire duration of the project. 

YOU’RE ALREADY ON THE RIGHT TRACK!

With a 98.8% completion rate on all of our bank, school, and church construction projects, we work to avoid the main issues that cause construction projects to stray from both the timeline and the budget.

Ultimately, doing your research and figuring out why construction projects fail in the first place is a great way to avoid project mishaps and failures. This means you’re already setting the groundwork for a successful construction project for your community, company or congregation.

If your next step is to find a full-service architecture firm you can trust, contact our team today! We’d love to see how we can meet the unique needs and goals of your project.

Church Fundraising 101

Beginning a church construction or remodeling project can be daunting.  For smaller congregations, it can feel almost impossible.  With time, money, and resources at stake, it’s certainly not uncommon to feel a little discouraged when considering a new project.

Where do you start? How do you pay for it? 

While even the thought of answering these questions may cause your blood pressure to rise, knowing where and how to take your first steps can make all the difference.

Like any architectural project, your church construction or remodeling project is probably going to cost a pretty penny.  Particularly for smaller congregations, this is one of the biggest hurdles to leap when thinking about starting a new project.  Fear not, however, because by the end of this blog post you’ll have everything you need to get a fundraising campaign up and running.

So, where to begin?

SHARING YOUR STORY

Getting your community involved is one of the best places to start as it allows them to have a sense of ownership and accountability for their worship space.  Ultimately, your story holds power.  Probably more power than you think!  It’s simply a matter of telling it to all the ears that are willing to listen.  

That said – if you haven’t already – getting acquainted with various social media platforms (i.e. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.) can help expand your presence among the community you serve.

The more you share your story across different social channels, the more likely you are to develop a personal connection with all of those around you.  By doing so, you are able to show that your church is more than just a gathering place for worship, rather a source of hope and safety for all those who seek its shelter.  

Once you have established your story within your community and shown them what you’re all about, it’s then time to reach out to your loyal members and ask them (nicely) to support your upcoming church construction or remodeling project. 

FIND A FUNDRAISING SPECIALIST 

Now that you’ve made yourself a name on your social media platforms, the next checkbox on your list should be to branch out to fundraising specialists.  Doing everything alone can be intimidating, which is why a fundraising specialist such as Walsh & Associates, Kairos Christian Resource Development, and J & J Fundraising can help you stay on track toward reaching your end goal.

Depending on which specialist you decide to work with, your fundraising group may help you organize events and campaigns to raise money and other kinds of donations for an organization. They may also even help with the social side of your fundraising campaign, designing promotional materials to help increase awareness for your organization’s work, goals, and financial needs.

TRADITIONAL METHODS WORK

There’s a reason why people still use traditional fundraising techniques.  Simply put, they work!  Benefit events are still one of the best ways to not only raise money for your church’s construction or remodeling project, but they also work toward bringing the community together.  Putting together a bake sale, community event, or really any sort of social function that mixes food, fun, and entertainment is an effective method for getting the support of your community.  Taking advantage of the holiday calendar by hosting themed parties or special services is also a great way to get more people excited about being a part of your congregation.

Think of it as an investment.  By engaging the community and showing them your dedication, more often than not, the word will spread – and in no time – new members will be lining up at your doors, curious to see what they’ve been missing.

SHOW YOUR PROGRESS

Using social media to keep everyone up to date with your fundraising goals and milestones is a critical piece to keeping your community engaged and enthusiastic about your upcoming construction or remodeling project.  By showing the progress of your community’s contributions, you can generate buzz and excitement for the day your fundraising goals are achieved.  After each event, don’t be afraid to announce how much you earned, how many people attended, and how the event helped to bring your church’s construction or remodeling project one step closer to fruition.  Keep everyone in the loop by broadcasting upcoming events via social media platforms and/or newsletters.  Those that may have missed out on one event may be inspired to show their support during the next one!

STILL HAVE QUESTIONS? 

If you still have any questions, or can’t quite get yourself through the door, then join us this upcoming March (3/14/2020) at our annual Building for Ministry Seminar where we partner with fundraisers and financiers in order to educate and clarify the necessary steps and processes that go into a church construction or remodeling project.  

For 22 years we have been teaming up with local businesses to deliver a fully comprehensive look into the church building process.  From design and construction to fundraising and finances, we have a team of presenters ready to tackle every inquiry!