What is Contractor, Sub?

A sub-contractor, often shortened to sub-contractor, is a specialist who is hired by the main contractor to perform specific tasks or services on a larger project.


In the realm of interior design and construction, a sub-contractor plays a critical role in bringing a project to life. Sub-contractors are specialists in their respective fields, such as electrical, plumbing, painting, or carpentry, and are hired by the main contractor to carry out specific parts of a project. The main contractor oversees the entire project, ensuring that it is completed on time, within budget, and to the client's satisfaction, while sub-contractors focus on their area of expertise.

The use of sub-contractors allows for a more efficient and specialized approach to completing a project. It enables the main contractor to delegate tasks to those who are most qualified, ensuring a high level of quality and precision. Sub-contractors are typically responsible for providing their own tools, materials, and workers, which further simplifies the project management process for the main contractor. Moreover, the flexible nature of hiring sub-contractors means that the main contractor can scale their workforce up or down based on the project's requirements, offering a versatile solution to manpower needs.

It's important to note, however, that the relationship between the main contractor and sub-contractors is governed by contracts that outline the scope of work, payment terms, and other essential details. Clear communication and coordination between all parties are paramount to ensure that the project progresses smoothly and efficiently.


For example, in the renovation of a residential home, the main contractor might hire a plumbing sub-contractor to install new pipes, an electrical sub-contractor to update the wiring, and a painting sub-contractor to refresh the walls. Each sub-contractor brings their expertise to the project, contributing to the overall success of the renovation.


  • What is the difference between a contractor and a sub-contractor?

    A contractor is the primary entity responsible for the overall management and execution of a project, while a sub-contractor is a specialist hired by the contractor to perform specific tasks or services within the project.

  • How are sub-contractors selected?

    Sub-contractors are typically selected based on their expertise, reputation, experience, and the quality of their past work. The main contractor may also consider cost, availability, and referrals from trusted sources.

  • Are sub-contractors responsible for their work?

    Yes, sub-contractors are responsible for the quality and completion of their work, as outlined in their contract with the main contractor. They must also adhere to any relevant laws, regulations, and industry standards.

Practical Application

When working on a design project, it's essential for interior designers and architects to understand the roles and responsibilities of sub-contractors. This knowledge can aid in effective project planning, communication, and coordination, ensuring that each specialization contributes optimally to the project. For individuals managing their own projects, being aware of how to effectively work with and oversee sub-contractors can significantly impact the project's success.