Contract documentation

The contract documentation is all documents which, when combined, form the basis of the contract, including all pre-tender, tender and contractual documentation. Your quote can also form part of the contract documentation.

The contract documentation will give you sufficient information to be able to complete the building works and meet the service delivery requirements.

The documents that make up the contract documentation include:

  • Contract – the binding document or agreement between you and the owner to carry out the building work. The type of contract you use will depend on the size and complexity of the project. Read more about which contract you should use
  • Contract conditions – define the legal rights and obligations, or the rules by which each party (you and the owner) must comply
  • Special contract conditions – as the name suggests, special conditions that are an extension of the general conditions and apply specifically to the project
  • Bill of quantities – a list of materials, parts and labour (and their costs) that are included in the contract. The bill of quantities is helpful in valuing variations and assists in the preparation of progress claims
  • Drawings – the architectural and structural plans of the building
  • Specifications – set out the technical requirements of the work. They describe the project and requirements for materials and workmanship, and add clarity to the drawings
  • Other documents – including technical and pricing schedules.

It is recommended that both you and the owner endorse complete sets of all contractual documents, and that all documents are kept intact. You must also ensure that all contracts, including related plans, specifications and directions, are kept for seven years from the date the documents were put into writing.