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What Does GMP Stand For in Construction?

Jul 26, 2023 | Blog, Finances, Job Bidding, Management

In the world of construction, there are numerous acronyms and industry-specific terms that can be confusing to newcomers and even seasoned professionals. One such term is GMP, which stands for Guaranteed Maximum Price. GMP is a significant concept in construction project management, as it plays a crucial role in controlling costs and ensuring transparency between clients and contractors. In this blog post, we will delve into what GMP means in construction and how it benefits both parties involved in a construction project.

Defining GMP in Construction

Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP) is a contractual agreement between a client or project owner and a construction contractor. It is a financial arrangement that sets a cap on the total cost of a construction project. In other words, the GMP is the maximum amount that the client will pay for the completion of the project, regardless of any cost overruns or unforeseen expenses that may arise during construction.

Key Elements of GMP

  1. Cost Estimation and Budgeting: The process of establishing a GMP begins with comprehensive cost estimation and budgeting by the contractor. The contractor analyzes the project’s scope, including materials, labor, equipment, permits, and any other relevant costs to determine a realistic and accurate budget.
  1. Contingency Allowance: To account for unforeseen circumstances or changes in the project’s scope, a contingency allowance is added to the GMP. This amount acts as a buffer, providing the contractor with some flexibility to manage unexpected expenses without exceeding the agreed-upon price.
  1. Open Book Policy: To maintain transparency and build trust between the client and the contractor, GMP contracts often follow an open book policy. This means that the contractor shares all cost-related information with the client, including invoices, receipts, and subcontractor bids, ensuring that the client is aware of how the GMP is calculated.

Advantages of GMP in Construction
(See “
4 Benefits of a Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP) Contact”)

  1. Cost Certainty: For clients, one of the most significant advantages of GMP is cost certainty. With a fixed maximum price, clients can plan their budgets accurately, reducing the risk of unexpected financial burdens during the project.
  1. Risk Allocation: GMP shifts the risk of cost overruns and unforeseen circumstances from the client to the contractor. The contractor is incentivized to complete the project within the GMP to avoid any additional financial liability, which encourages careful project planning and execution.
  1. Transparency and Trust: GMP promotes open communication between the client and the contractor. The client has insight into the project’s financial aspects, which fosters trust and transparency throughout the construction process.
  1. Flexibility and Collaboration: While GMP provides a maximum price, it doesn’t restrict the contractor from delivering value and finding cost-effective solutions. Contractors can still suggest alternatives and collaborate with clients to optimize the project while staying within the GMP.
  1. Budget Control: GMP allows clients to maintain better control over their project budget. Clients can request detailed breakdowns of costs, making it easier to track expenses and understand how funds are allocated.

In the construction industry, GMP, or Guaranteed Maximum Price, is a contractual agreement that provides cost certainty and risk mitigation for both clients and contractors. By setting a maximum price and incorporating a contingency allowance, GMP offers clients the confidence that their project will be completed within a specified budget, while contractors are motivated to manage costs effectively.

The transparency and collaboration fostered by GMP ensure that both parties are well-informed about project expenses and changes, leading to better decision-making and trust throughout the construction process. For clients, GMP provides peace of mind, knowing that they won’t face financial surprises during the project. For contractors, it encourages careful planning and cost-effective solutions to deliver high-quality results within the agreed-upon budget.

In conclusion, GMP is a valuable tool in construction project management, aligning the interests of clients and contractors while ensuring successful and cost-efficient project delivery. By understanding the significance of GMP, stakeholders can forge strong partnerships, setting the stage for successful construction ventures.