The Right Way To Do Construction Cleanup
· Pay for a dumpster – I didn’t. I honestly thought that since I owned a truck and a small trailer, I could save money by loading and hauling the construction debris to the county waste disposal site myself. I didn’t do my homework before, so I didn’t know the dump fees were over $100 a load up to 10,000 pounds (and then more for anything over that). So a small load in the back of my truck cost as much as using both my truck and trailer. Also, did I mention the dump was over 30 miles away and closed at noon on Saturday and wasn’t open on Sundays. I found these details out the hard way.
· Specify in each sub-contractors contract EXACTLY what I expected of their crew every night. I should have detailed what “cleaning up after themselves” meant. For instance, our roofers dropped nails left and right onto the surrounding ground and never picked up a one! I think I should have held back final payments until each sub-contractor had cleaned up their mess.
· Had a specific location for lunch trash. The subs tended to throw their leftovers, cans, bottles and bags onto the piles of lumber or concrete or siding or whatever! It made cleaning up the construction debris that much harder and way smellier.
· Articulated what was debris and what wasn’t. It pained me to see them throw perfectly good construction supplies into the trash pile. For instance, when the drywalling crew left, they threw an almost full box of plastic corners out. I would have loved to recycle them through organizations such as Habitat for Humanity. Since I had already paid for the items they were throwing out, I would have liked to have found homes for the extra materials.
Bottom line here is: it's not always about saving a dollar if you end up having to spend two to do so.