Article “Home Improvement Contract”


This Guide is Meant to Offer a basic Explanation of home improvement contract. This guide isn’t meant to provide the reader legal counsel on the way property owners or accredited contractors would be to draft HICs. Many things, such as but not restricted to: (a) nature of job, (b) overall requirements, (c) job specifications, or (d) builder’s participation, have a substantial affect on the conditions inside a HIC involving a residential home owner and a builder. But, a contract might be more successful due to a provision omitted out of or a area of building services specifically excluded from the contract. Thus, this guide isn’t meant to substitute for the advice of an attorney concerning a particular problem, a particular contract or a particular construction project. In case the reader has a specific legal question or requires legal guidance, the reader needs to get in touch with an lawyer.

In our clinic, we provide advice to solve Construction contract disputes. Often, building disputes arise in the context of residential remodels or renovations. Home remodels, called”home improvement” projects under California law, need a written contract which complies with California law to get a”home improvement contract” (or”HIC”). We help both homeowners and contractors in the building of HICs and solving house improvement contract disputes.

Regrettably, as happens all too often, we Are contacted only after issues have already surfaced. For example, contractors will frequently come to us after being advised of a homeowner’s complaint to the Contractors State License Board, or after a claim was made from the contractor’s license bond. We’ve helped many builders in such and other similar scenarios.

Additionally, we Also Have assisted homeowners (a) Draft or tailor HICs to their residence remodel job; or, (b) assist homeowners resolve disputes using their builders. Frequently, homeowners may contact us later recognizing that their contractor is knee-deep at a house improvement job, is over budget, behind schedule, hasn’t asked prior approval for particular work, has billed due to duplicative or corrective work, or has given job that violates building codes or is otherwise faulty. From time to time, homeowners don’t find out till after the fact that they’ve hired an unlicensed person claiming to be a”builder” with inadequate (or no) workers’ compensation insurance. We’ve represented homeowners to successfully solve their disputes using numerous legal options and strategies.

The Goal of this Guide is to teach both builders And homeowners alike at the requirement of owning a”code compliant” home improvement contract, setting forth the parameters of this undertaking, BEFORE the home remodel building job starts.


By legal definition, a “home improvement” Involves remodeling, repairing, altering, converting, modernizing, or adding to residential home. Besides the home itself, a house improvement also has work on other adjoining improvements, like driveways, swimming pools, patios, landscaping, and fences.

In California, if a house improvement project is Valued over $500, there has to be a written contract between the contractor and the owner (or renter ). Section 7159 of the Contractors’ State License Law sets forth several items which have to be contained in almost any home improvement contract, including but not restricted to down payments, mechanics’ liens, change orders, and a homeowner’s right to cancel the contract. California law also mandates the dimensions and kind of the typed font that has to be utilised in the arrangement.


If you are a California contractor, do you really have A composed which you use for home improvement projects and remodels worth greater than $500? Otherwise, you’re violating California law and therefore are in danger of being fined; and in certain circumstances . Should you use a contract, can it be compliant and up-to-date with all current California law? Do you provide the homeowner with all necessary additional files and disclosures, like the homeowner checklist or federally-mandated lead hazard information? Are the building services disturbing lead paint, requiring EPA certificate? Can you use the same written contract for all your home improvement projects? In our experience, a one-size-fits-all contract has its own limitations, particularly when the range of your work changes from project to project.

At Last & Faorowe help contractors in Drafting house improvement contracts which do not just comply with California law, but we also address frequent reoccurring problems that we’ve seen in our 25+ years of litigation experience. Additionally, we’ve helped contractors embrace and execute construction and company practices and processes to prevent problems our other builder customers have undergone. By way of instance, a must address common concerns regarding payment, increasing your probability of being paid, the way to prevent payment issues with different builders and providers, and the way to stop construction delays.

A ought to think about not Just the way to prevent disputes but the best way to solve disputes that arise. By way of instance, does the builder wish to arbitrate a building dispute? A compulsory arbitration clause at a house improvement contract requiring a contractor and homeowner to arbitrate their dispute needs to comply with Department 7191 of the Contractors’ State License Law. Otherwise, as a California court recently determined in Woolls v. Superior Court, the mediation provision might not be enforceable from the contractor.

Before Beginning work in your next house Improvement project, you need to talk with an lawyer to make certain that the HIC Along with your company practices are in accord with the law, in an attempt to Reduce the possibility of future disputes or liability, and also to optimize your Long-term small business success and profitability.