There are many forms of construction methods available to the owner. No one glove fits every hand, so the methods listed below are presented to help explain their function.


This Method is a common practice used in the construction industry. The steps taken in a hard bid are as follows:

  • An Architect is hired to draw a full set of plans and specs tailored to the vision of the homeowner.
  • General Contractors are asked to bid the plans and submit what they feel is their best number to complete the project.
  • The homeowner then chooses the General Contractor who is most qualified to build what the Architect has drawn.

This method does however, have it’s inherent flaws. Often a General Contractor is chosen based on the fact that they came in as the lowest bidder. At first glance the lowest price is the most appealing, but there is more to be considered.

The following are common challenges this method presents:

  • General contractors bidding in this method have no incentive to point out where there may be holes in the plans, in fact, some General Contractors will lower their initial bid numbers to be awarded the project and count on “ making it up” in the upcoming change orders.
  • It is difficult to compare bids “ apples to apples”. Our advice is to lean on your Architect to help in this area. Their experience in this area and having lived through the process many times will help tremendously.
  • In some cases, to get the initial “low bid number”, cheaper subcontractors may be selected by a competing General Contractor, jeopardizing quality and schedule.

Our SUMAC family is eager to bid your job and can compete with any company out there. We pride ourselves on our honesty and transparency through the process.


The Time and Materials method is a very effective method when faced with a difficult project with many moving parts. Construction can begin even before plans are 100% complete. The owner pays the contractor for labor and supervision time, material, and contractor fee on a weekly basis. SUMAC also assists the owner and architect on cost and schedule for “influx” portions of the plans. The beauty of this method is that the owner can make changes on the fly without affecting current construction.

One thing most people don’t know, is that clients that choose T&M, have been through the fixed price method before on large projects and choose this route while budget is still important to them. Most people new to the building experience believe that T&M is for folks with unlimited money – This is not the case. Granted, with extra flexibility to make changes on the fly, budgets can increase quickly… but this is also the case in any method of construction, if the scope grows, the price grows. In the T&M method, your General Contractor is able to give you flexibility and complete transparency so you can assure that money is being paid directly for the work done at fair rates. No hedging bets or inflated change orders.


  • Complimentary Consultation:
  • Call Dan, our CEO for a meeting with you and your architect. He will be happy to discuss construction methods and basic square foot pricing. Budget considerations and what you hope to achieve with that budget will be discussed. If the plans are already drawn, pricing and schedule will be discussed to a greater degree.

  • Pre-construction:
  • Involving SUMAC early in the pre-construction process has historically shown that a lower cost and a tighter schedule will be realized. Working closely with your architect, all line items in the plans will be estimated, and schedules set. The architect and SUMAC will exchange pertinent information regarding production cost and any new items that need to be addressed.

  • Plans and Specs:
  • SUMAC will go through the entire set of plans, estimating cost and schedule in great detail. If SUMAC is selected as your contractor of choice, potential missed items and changes will be identified and priced, giving the owner the “real world” cost and schedule.

  • Value Engineering:
  • What if the cost of the project needs to be lowered? Along with your architect’s assistance, SUMAC will sit down and identify potential avenues of cost reduction. We will offer a menu of items that would lower your cost and attach a price to each item. This will allow you to decide which items may be expendable in achieving your desired budget.

  • Subcontractor Management:
  • SUMAC will select only proven, quality subcontractors for your project. Three subcontractors will be chosen for each discipline to analyze their scope of work. A fair and accurate bid will be submitted to SUMAC, and the most qualified company will be invited to join your construction team.

  • Construction:
  • SUMAC will assign a Project Manager and Site Manager to lead your team, overseeing the day to day construction operations. Job cost, subcontractor management, schedule and quality workmanship will be updated weekly to the owner and architect. Our General Superintendent will be on site weekly to monitor progress of the project, and to assist the Project Manager on any issues that may present themselves. CEO Dan Giebelman will visit the job sites regularly.

  • Safety:
  • Job site safety is our number one priority. OSHA standards will be adhered to and weekly safety meetings will be conducted by the Site Manager. Hard hats, work pants and boots are required on all SUMAC projects.

  • Follow Up:
  • A professional Site Manager will be assigned to your project who will make sure that all punch list items will be taken care of to your satisfaction. If there are any call back issues, he will respond promptly and make sure that they are taken care of.

THE SUMAC METHOD delivers information flow. Our open book policy of cost and schedule assure that complete transparency to the owner and architect is achieved.

Thank you for having SUMAC as your construction partner.