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Cost of a General Contractor – In-Depth Research

The average cost (according to our research) nationally to hire a professional general contractor is $1,650. Averagely, contracting clients pay between $750-$2,400 for general contractor services. However, the precise cost tends to vary from one project to another—the smaller the project, the lesser the costs. Conversely, the bigger the project, the more expensive it is, sometimes totaling thousands of dollars in expenses.

Typically, a general contractor and remodeling specialist are in charge of every project detail. However, if your contracting project requires more specialized work, for instance, electrical wire installations or replacement, a general contractor may decide to subcontract. A general contractor can hire independent contractors, subcontractors, construction laborers, or other specialists to assist in the project. Regardless, the general contractor is your central point of contact and carries all the responsibilities.

Luckily, regardless of your location, you can find a general contractor near you who should comfortably be able to give you (on the spot) a free estimate for your project. Below is our detailed guide on how general contracting pricing works if you decide on a contracting project.

general contractor service
General Contractor Services in Denver

How Much Does It Cost (Gross) to Hire A Contractor?

  • High-end Costs: $32,000
  • Low-end Costs: $50
  • Average Costs Range: $750-$2,400
  • National Average Cost: $1,650.

What is the Standard Percentage for General Contractor Fees?

Expect to pay 10%-20% of your entire project costs for general contractor management charges. However, depending on the size and the age of the construction project, also expect the rate to climb as high as 25%. Some general contractors value their worth more than others, so expect to hear higher than expected fee quotations.

General contractor fees are calculated from the total project costs, a markup on materials, and subcontractor labor. A general contractor often pays material costs, subcontractors fees, and all project-related services.

Therefore, they will often quote a fully inclusive fee to cater to the project-related costs they incurred. Here are a few detailed examples of costs a general contractor includes in the price mark up:

Worker and subcontractor compensation

general contractor costs
What is the cost of GC services?


Insurances such as general liability, among others

A few exceptions exist. For instance, if you hired a general contractor to build a house from the ground up in Denver, they will likely charge you less than a general contractor working on an old home remodeling project in New York City. Moreover, if you hired that same New York-based General Contractor to rebuild your roof instead of doing a kitchen renovation, their fees will be higher.

What is the Standard Percentage for Markup on Materials?

Materials markup typically varies between 12%-18%. This cost often includes costs such as physical material expenses and other related expenses. Remember, a general contractor does not only labor-related work but also project management. Therefore, they will generally charge you.

Residential Vs. Commercial General Contractor Fees

General contractor fees tend to be higher for commercial projects compared to residential general contractor fees. However, this may be the case depending on factors that impact overhead costs such as materials, equipment, labor, insurance, and permits.

If the above-listed factors do not significantly impact overhead, chances are there is no much difference between residential and commercial general contractor fees.

For instance, if a commercial construction project requires extra management or labor, you might pay higher general contractor fees. Furthermore, if your general contractor is in high demand in the market and passes us alternative offers to take up yours, you may also have to pay a higher fee. In such instances, you are most likely to get absolute value for your investment.

How Are General Contractors Paid?

As previously mentioned, a general contractor is paid with a calculated percentage of your total project cost. General contractors calculate this cost percentage based on project materials, labor, supplies, among others.

There are different ways to pay your general contractor, like most services, subject to contractor-client discussions and agreements. Expect your general contractor to specify their most preferred payment mode.

Some general contractors tend to ask for upfront deposit fees, and the rest to be paid upon project completion. Other general contractors expect to be paid by milestones. Generally, do not expect to pay the entire project fees upfront.

gc costs

General Contractor Costs by Project Size and Scope

Before hiring a general contractor, you should note two significant ways to price their work. A general contractor may price their work based on the scope of the work, meaning how extensive the construction project is. Generally, a few targeted replacements and repairs may cost less than constructing a new property from the start.

Alternatively, a general contractor may price the project based on the project size. Ideally, the larger the project size, the more you will pay and vice versa.

The average cost by work scope includes:

  • $3,390 for existing structure repair
  • $8,030 for replacing parts of your existing structure
  • $32,140 for complete renovations or constructions from the ground up.

Contractor Labor Charges

How much does a contractor charge for labor? Contractor labor charges tend to vary depending on the type and size of the project. The general contractor fees for a house are often higher than a deck/installation.

denver general contractor cost

Average Project Costs

Below are the typical average construction costs and range of GC fees:

Costs to build a home

$300,000. Expect to pay the contractor between $30,000- $64,000.

Costs to build an addition to an existing structure

$48,000. Expect to pay the GC between $4,800- $9,600.

Costs of remodeling a house

$50,000. Expect to pay between $5,000- $10,000 in GC fees

Costs for remodeling a bathroom

$11,000. Expect to pay the contractor between $1,100- $2,200

Kitchen remodeling rate

$25,000. Expect to pay between $2,500- $5,000 in GC fees

Drywall installation price

$1,850. Expect to pay between $180- $360 in GC fees.

Costs of building stone or brick walls

$4,900. Expect to pay $490- $980 GC fees.

Deck-building price

$7,700. You will pay $770- $1,540

Cost to build a garage

$29,000. The general contractor fees will be between $2,900- $5,800

Price of installing a concrete patio

$2,750. Expect to pay between $275- $550 in GC fees.

Cost of installing a concrete driveway

$4,400. You will pay between $440- $880 in GC fees.

Fence installation rates

$3,300. Expect to pay between $330- $660 in GC fees.

contractors price range

General price ranges for construction projects

  • Garage Remodel: $810- $3,110
  • building a Shed: $1,650- $16,500
  • Building a Porch or Deck: $1,650- $26,400
  • Building a Bard: $1,650- $49,500
  • Building a Garage: $4,950- $88,000
  • Building a House: $132,000- $522,500
  • Remodeling a Bathroom: $2,530- $12,650
  • Remodeling a Home: $2,200- $27,500
  • Remodeling a Basement: $5,500- $77,000.

What Do General Contractors Do?

Since you are paying their fees, you only know what the general contractor does as the project owner.

A general contractor oversees and manages the full scope of your project once you have drawn up and agreed upon the project designs. However, some general contractors have extra know-how and expertise as construction managers and may provide valuable input from the pre-construction phase to completion.

Most project owners, especially residential clients, tend to hire general contractors in strict circumstances. Such circumstances include where a project involves permits, subcontractors, building codes, and heavy-duty equipment.

Pros of Hiring a General Contractor

Hiring a general contractor is a significant investment for project owners. The advantages of hiring a general contractor include:

A GC implements the project timeline and schedule.

A GC is better placed on acquiring permits or homeowners’ association approval.

The contractor purchases and ensured delivery of construction materials

The GC oversees the project progress from start to completion

The contractor ensures the final project complies with the existing building codes

The general contractor also discusses, plans, and suggests necessary amendments, especially if they were not involved in the original design process

Most importantly, the general contractor hires, manages, and pays workers and subcontractors for the project.

Depending on their skills, expertise, and experience, general contractors can perform one or more of the following tasks:

The residential or commercial property construction

  • Room additions
  • Home or bathroom/kitchen remodels
  • Complex HVAC installation/ replacements
  • Complex plumbing projects
  • Structural or foundation repair
  • Concrete work
  • Complex electrical projects.

General Contractor Vs. Construction Manager-How Much do they Cost?

General contractors typically charge higher fees than construction managers.

A construction manager charges between 5% to 15% of the total project cost for small-scale projects. For a larger project, a construction manager charges 5% and less of the entire project costs.

On the other hand, a general contractor typically charges 10%-20% and above the total project costs. General contractor fees tend to be comprehensive. In most cases, the contractors come with a team of subcontractors and workers who need compensation. Moreover, contractors have to consider their overhead costs and profits when billing you.

pay hourly

What is The Hourly Rate for A General Contractor?

It costs an average of $50 per hour to hire a private general contractor. Generally, it costs between $30 to $100 per hour to hire a general contractor. However, these rates vary and are subject to factors, including the type of construction project and your location.

  • Minimum cost per hour: $30
  • Maximum fee per hour: $100
  • National Average Cost: $50.

It is important to remember & note (and keep in a safe place) that not all general contractors will request hourly-based payments. Some quote-specific figures arrived from different calculations.

Project Estimation Process

Having an estimation of the general contractor’s fees allows you to budget accordingly. Hiring a professional general contractor has its pros, as listed above. One of the most prevalent is that you will enjoy a smooth experience.

Once you have drawn up the project plans, the next step would be to reach out to your general contractor for estimates. Upon meeting and consulting with the general contractor, ensure you:

  • Communicate your needs and expectations clearly
  • Understand fully all costs involved in a construction project
  • Communicate efficiently, fluently, and professionally with the contractor.

Most importantly, ensure you sign a pre-construction services contract. The pre-construction service contract, also known as a professional service agreement or a design agreement, is signed by most clients to cover the contractor’s time spent planning and estimating project costs.

In addition, this agreement may tag along a flat fee ranging from $2,500 to $20,000 depending on the contractor’s market niche and location of the project. Alternatively, the contractor may charge for the work at an hourly rate. Subsequently, the total price often falls within the flat fee range.

Upon completing the pre-construction services, most general contractors allow customers to use the work (material selections, cost estimates, and plans) with a different contractor. They may also choose to take up to the job themselves at their discretion.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a general contractor’s hourly rate?

Not all general contractors charge an hourly rate for their services. Generally, a general contractor charges a total percentage of the entire project costs. However, some general contractors agree to a consultation charged hourly. The expected hourly rate is between $50 to $150 hourly, with a guaranteed minimum number of hours.

How much does it cost (I know, iIto hire an independent general contractor?

Most general contractors are independent. Generally, it costs 10-20% of the project costs to hire a separate general contractor. However, the average rate is almost similar for contractors who work under construction firms.

How much does estimation costs?

Some general contractors offer free estimates. Depending on the project, some contractors will charge you between $50 to $1,000. For instance, expect to pay for estimation if your need an inspection or design consultation services. Regardless, if you pay the estimate fee, chances are the general contractor may use that fee in your project if you hire them.

Most clients are typically stuck between whether the construction contract is cost-plus or fixed price. In a fixed-price contract, a contractor will generally offer bottom-line costs. However, the contractor does not break out the markup for the client to see. For instance, the contractor may generalize the pricing, which may be as unspecific as a single all-in price to work on a project, for example, $150,000 to renovate your home. Alternatively, the contractor may choose to spell out pricing by category with total demolition, plumbing, and carpentry estimates. The markup is integrated into the line items but not depicted separately.

In addition, the contract language may stipulate the total construction cost percentages that the GC charges for overhead, insurance, and profit. However, bills to the clients do not necessarily separate the markups and the raw costs.

price of general contractor

How does a general contractor Set their price?

The rates are usually set in different ways. The general contractor may offer a fixed-price estimate, also known as a bid/fixed bid. Alternatively, they might offer the client a time and material contract. However, expect to encounter several variations of the above contract types.

  • How Pricing Differs By Types of Contracts
  • Lump-Sum or Fixed Bid Contract

Here, the general contractor gives you the hard costs before project commencement and abides by the set pricing. Unfortunately, a general contractor may waste lots of time and compromise their gross margins by tracking subcontractors to get more accurate bids. In such a situation, a client may opt to choose a cheaper contractor. Consequently, getting a GC to give you a fixed bid estimate becomes complicated, especially if you are on a schedule.

Time and Materials Contract

Here, a general contractor provides you with an estimate subject to alteration. The contractor will charge you an hourly wage or labor rate plus the cost of materials used in the project. Time and building materials are more common than fixed bid contracts.

However, it can be risky for you, especially if you encounter unexpected events that subject the project to further, more costly extensions.

Additionally, some contractors typically charge a minimum fee for particular projects and markups. Most GCs consider overhead, material, and labor costs into their total prices.

When Should You Hire A General Contractor?

You can generally hire a general contractor for public works projects and construction contracts. Homeowners can also hire them for sizeable home remodeling projects that require significant renovations or new constructions.

Experienced expert general contractors may use their connections in the construction industry to perform a top-quality task. Therefore, a general contractor is suitable for you if you have a construction project that needs to meet a deadline.

reputable contractor

How to Choose A Reputable General Contractor

Getting the right professional Denver’s General Contractor for the job is never easy. Finding and hiring a reputable general contractor is a vital investment you ought to make in your construction project. Most clients are mostly tempted to go for the lowest bids from contractors. Unfortunately, this tends to become an even costlier choice as time goes.

Below are expert-recommended ways you should take to help you find and hire the best reputable general contractor for your construction project.

Compare All Options Available

The internet nowadays is a resourceful place to find your ideal contractor. Narrow your search for general contractors to your locality and slowly sift through the available options. Concentrate your efforts on construction companies or independent general contractors with positive reviews and feedbacks.

Narrow down your list to construction companies or independent contractors in Denver. Use only those who have completed projects similar to what you want. Finally, narrow down the list to 4-5 best options from the entire list.

Inquire About Estimates

Not all general contractors charge you for estimates. Contact each contractor and request a written estimate. If you come across a contractor quoting a higher estimation cost, be diligent enough to ask for an explanation. Also, you can choose to narrow the list down to contractors offering free estimates.

Inquire About Permits

Depending on your residential location, you may need to acquire a building permit before starting a project. Check the state level or local government to find the requirements and guidelines for getting a permit. If a potential candidate is reluctant to obtain a permit, chances are they are less reputable than expected.

Ask for References

Request the contractor to grant you access to contact information for previous clients who hired the contractor for similar projects. A reputable general contractor or construction company should comfortably be able to provide you access to a list of previous satisfied clients. This helps to build your confidence in the contractor.

Inquire About Insurance

According to the Federal Trade Commissions (FTC), a general contractor must carry personal liability, property damage coverage, and workers’ compensation in most states. Ensure you verify that the general contractor’s insurance is updated since this protects you against potential lawsuits.

Is the General Contractor Licensed?

Not all states and industry requires a general contractor to carry a certification. However, ensure you check with your local state to be sure just in case it is a requirement. Some licenses tend to be specific to a particular industry. Regardless of the certification, ensure the contractor’s license is updated.


Experience counts factors a lot when gauging a professional’s expertise. The longer a general contractor’s knowledge, the more experienced they are. Therefore, ensure you go for a Denver general contractor who has worked on different projects for a reasonable amount of time to qualify as a reputable GC. Also, check how long the construction company has been in the business.

Inquire With Relevant Authorities and Individuals

Talk to anyone with relevant information about the prospective conductor before hiring them. Aside from the references, you can call the Better Business Bureau and inquire if there are any complaints against the potential contractor.

You can also call the local building department to inquire about the contractor’s professionalism and courtesy. Additionally, you can ask the contractor who their primary suppliers are. Call the suppliers and inquire more about the contractors.

It is also good to check with the local credit bureau how long the business or independent contractor has been in business.

scam contractors

Beware of Scams

Stay away from general contractors who insist on upfront payments. Also, avoid contractors who don’t provide detailed and project-specified proposals. More signs of a scam or less reputable general contractor includes:

  • Difficult to contact/ reach
  • No references
  • No license
  • No insurance
  • Does not write/ sign a contract
  • Has negative reviews online.

Written Agreements and Contracts

Signing a contract is a vital part of hiring a professional. Contract information and requirements tend to vary from state to state. However, you should always exercise diligence and ask for a contract at all times. Having all the details of your upcoming project in writing is vital. Most project owners mistake relying on verbal guarantees, which does not help where situations go sideways.

In addition, before you sign any written document, carefully read through the contract and ensure it has the following:

  • Project commencement and completion dates. These dates are primarily estimates but should ultimately be included in the contract
  • A payment schedule for everyone involved. Ensure this consists of any suppliers or subcontractors involved in the project
  • Your needs and specifications (scope of work). For instance, if you expect the general contractor to provide post-project completion services such as cleanup, ensure it is stipulated in the contract
  • An itemized material list. Include the total costs and unit prices for each material and who is responsible for purchasing the materials
  • The contractor’s contact information, including their full name, phone number, address, and license number.

General Contractors in Denver, CO

Are you looking for an affordable and reputable general contractor in Denver? General contractors in Denver are dedicated to helping Denver residents achieve their dream homes. Denver general contractors can perform a wide range of tasks, from home remodels to additions to new constructions.

When you hire a Denver general contractor, you won’t need to hire more specialized contractors for your projects. General contractors in Denver hire the subcontractors on your behalf, exercising due diligence to ensure they hire the best for your project.

What Project Types Can Denver General Contractors Do?

A Denver GC is highly skilled and experienced with different types of projects. Whether you need a simple room addition, new construction, or a home remodel for your bathroom or kitchen, a Denver GC can provide the best services at competitive rates.

In addition, part of a Denver general contractor’s work is to help you acquire construction permits required for your project. The general contractor submits the applications duly and works with their contacts to help speed things up. Once you hire a Denver general contractor, you will only need to worry about doing your part as a client.

Where Can I Find the Best General Contractor Near Me?

Finding the best general contractor in Denver can be challenging. However, a good majority of Denver residents trust Avi’s Remodeling for their construction projects. Avi’s Remodeling is a leading general contracting company serving Denver, CO, and the surrounding areas.

Avi’s Remodeling provides clients with the best services as a leading general contractor in Colorado. We provide affordable services without compromising on the quality of services.

Why Hire Avi’s Remodeling?

As an industry-leading general contractor, we provide professional general contracting services to all types of residential clients. Below are a few reasons we stand out as the best general contractors in Denver, CO:

  • Experience. Avi’s Remodeling Contractors have been providing general contracting services in Denver for over a decade. As such, we understand all our clients’ needs in Denver in and out
  • Licensed and Insured. Avi’s Remodeling is a fully certified general contractor with insurance coverages to protect our clients at all costs
  • Affordable Rates. We offer market-friendly prices for all our general contracting services. Depending on your project type and size, we can provide you with free estimates and several incentives to help you stick to your budget
  • Fast, Reliable, and Efficient Services. We stick to the estimated schedule to help you resume normal operations.

Bottom Line

Avi’s Remodeling is the leading general contractor in Denver, CO. Contact us today to determine our general contractor costs and schedule a consultation with our experts.

Avi the Remodeler

Avi the Remodeler

Avi is one of a kind remodeler. Since the 1990s Avi is working as a General Contractor. Do you have a question? Contact Us and Avi will get back to you.

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