So you’re planning a commercial construction project, what things do you need to know before you break ground? There are of course many things to consider, but we’ve collected five key things that you absolutely need to know before starting construction.

1 What are your priorities? Start with a short list things that absolutely must happen for the project to be considered a success. Do you have a specific budget or timeframe that must be met? Do you have specifications for the structure that cannot be compromised? Try to keep this list to actual priorities, not just a wish list of what you’d like to see happen.

2 Who will lead the project? Do you have a general contractor? Are you using a design-build contractor that will oversee all aspects of the project? One of the benefits of the design-build model is having a single point of responsibility for the design and construction of the project.

3 What problems or roadblocks should you expect? Whether it’s obtaining the proper permits, contending with weather or insurance needs, it’s essential to account for as many possible hurdles before you begin rather than waiting to be blindsided by them in the middle of the project. This is where having experienced leadership can really make a difference.

4 How will your construction project impact the community? This is an important piece of the puzzle to consider, as well.

5 What limits do you have? Construction schedules nearly always change to some degree based on various factors, and the same can often be said for budgets. However, it’s important to have in mind what limits you have for the project.