Think about contracts like a game of cards. No matter who you are playing with, friends, family, everyone is just looking out for themselves. The same can be true when doing business without contracts.

“We don’t need a contract, we’re family!”

“My landlord said he would replace the roof for us, no extra charge. I trust him; he’s a friend of the family.”

“If there is anything wrong with the deck installation, they’ll fix it. They’re a big company; I don’t think they’ll want to harm their reputation.”

Those are just some of the typical thoughts people have before they get cheated out of money by those they’ve trusted. Contracts are there for the bad times. They exist for when what was promised, becomes a vague recollection. They’re there for when the business financial climate changes. Maybe there’s a new investor who wants a larger profit margin or a big provider gets bought by a bigger multi-national company, and now they must recover their acquisition costs and stop doing what they are not bound to do.

Having well-written contracts is nothing less than smart business.  Kudos to those who never have to refer to their contract to clarify any disputes. A clear contract should leave no room for argument when there is a question or conflict at hand.

On a final note, when someone suggests that there’s no need for a detailed contract or one at all, know that it will benefit everyone to take the time and write it now than endure a costly, strenuous lawsuit in the future!