July 21, 2024


Making a New Home

COVID-19 has slowed payments for GCs and subs, report finds

2 min read

Table of Contents

Dive Brief:

  • Just a single construction organization in 10 constantly gets compensated in full, a 75% drop from prior to the pandemic, in accordance to the 2021 Building Income Flow & Payment Report. Payment delays have also worsened: Just 9% of organizations always get paid on time, a drop of 60% from final yr. 
  • The report from development computer software agency Levelset identified that some of the financial possibility correlates immediately to the design payment chain. Typical contractors are four periods more likely than subcontractors to get compensated within just 30 times, and 50% additional possible to get compensated in complete. 1 in five subcontractors, suppliers and other sub-tier parties routinely hold out further than 60 days to acquire payment. 
  • The gap widens even further when it comes to accumulating retainage, which 61% of all organizations say is “really vital” or “the most vital aspect” for money move. Fifty-6 p.c of subcontractors hold out a lot more than 60 days to obtain retained resources, compared to just 16% of basic contractors. 

Dive Insight:

The research found that payment velocity also correlates strongly to project style. Residential development organizations are 3 occasions more very likely to collect payment inside of 30 days than those people on industrial tasks, and 5 instances more probable than those on public jobs. And though only one particular in 5 homebuilders (17%) say they often get paid on time, they vastly outperform people on government assignments (7%) and industrial work (4%).



“The pandemic drove financial uncertainty via the roof and put an added kink in the movement of money on assignments throughout the nation, ” stated Scott Wolfe Jr., CEO of Levelset. “Payment delays throttle a firm’s ability to be competitive, take on new initiatives, and grow their company.” 

Following 40 times, one in five construction businesses is cash circulation destructive, acquiring by now paid their subcontractors, suppliers, and other distributors — but nonetheless waiting around for payment. Forty-seven per cent of firms say payment delays lessen their earnings, and 1 in 3 convert to financial loans or other financing to bridge the cash flow gap, adding curiosity and other prices. 



To mitigate opportunity payment troubles or to gather payment, contractors report an improve in preliminary notices and mechanics liens. Just about 50 percent of organizations (51%) mail a preliminary notice on a normal challenge, up from just 29% in 2020. Lien statements are on the rise as effectively, with 71% of construction organizations submitting a lien over non-payment in 2020, a 22% increase from 2019. 

Design firms also report investing in other methods to help speed up payment. Some of the findings include:

  • 83% of development companies have the means to accept electronic payments and 79% say it has aided their corporation get paid out a lot quicker. 
  • Businesses making use of computer software for tracking and processing payments grew 113% 12 months-over-calendar year.
  • Software for payment paperwork is up 67% because 2019. 
  • Just 8% of building businesses say they really don’t use software at all — down from 21% in 2019. 
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