Some of the most common questions asked about Construction Investigations, using Först Consulting Group, are answered here for your convenience.
When should I contact Först Consulting Group?
It is best to contact Först Consulting Group as soon as a problem is discovered or a defect in construction is suspected. We encourage you to contact us prior to engaging with a contractor to produce a complete set of Bid Documents, including General Conditions and Requirements, as well as information and instructions to contractor.
What geographical region does Först Consulting Group cover?
As a division of The Falcon Group, our territory includes Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C. Först Consulting Group is also available for select services nationwide.
What services does Först Consulting Group provide?
We provide consulting and construction representative services, pre-concealment and pre-sale inspections, contract review, project management, and estate management. Additionally, thermal, radon, noise, and energy efficiency testing can be performed. Scientific reporting, expert opinion, advice and testimony is also provided. View an expanded list of services offered through The Falcon Group.
Does my project require a permit, and how do I know if my contractor has one?
Most construction projects require both a permit and one or more inspections by a local Building Official at specific stages during a project. If you are undergoing a construction or renovation project and unsure if your contractor has obtained the necessary permits, Först Consulting Group can provide research into your local Building Department for answers.
Is my contractor licensed, and do they need to be?
To protect yourself and your property, you need to ensure that the contractor you hire has the proper license for the proposed type of work. You may ask the contractor to show you a copy of their current license.
According to law, “Contracting for, or bidding upon the construction, removal, repair, or improvements to or upon real property owned, controlled or leased by another person without a license or certificate, or without the proper class of license as defined in §54.1-1100 for the value of work to be performed is prohibited.” You can verify your contractor’s Virginia contractor’s license on the Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation (DPOR) website: http://www.dpor.virginia.gov/LicenseLookup.
What is a Change Order?
At the beginning of your relationship, your contractor will provide you with an estimate of services and costs. However, unforeseen damage or latent defects may come up once the job is started. For example, structural damage behind walls or beneath floors—defects that are only found when these areas are exposed.
A Change Order is a written statement that authorizes the contractor to perform additional services and/or add additional time not included in the original construction contract. A Change Order is required to be signed by both parties, and be signed prior to any additional work being performed. It can be considered as an addendum to your original contract.
What is an RRP Certification?
The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting rule (RRP Rule) requires firms that perform renovation, repair and painting projects that disturb lead-based paint in homes, child care facilities and preschools built before 1978 to have their firm certified by the EPA (or an EPA-authorized state), use certified renovators trained by EPA-approved training providers, and follow lead-safe work practices. (This is not a license for lead abatement, removal, encapsulation, or enclosure.)
Disclaimer: Först Consulting Group is not a law firm and cannot provide legal advice.