What is a selection item versus a change order?

What is a selection item versus a change order?

Kevin Fitzpatrick


As a project progresses, you will encounter changes, unexpected additions, and client chosen upgrades to the project.  This is where change orders come into play. The change order stands as an addendum to the initial contract you signed with the client to capture details of additional or changed work on the project, what that work will cost, any impact that change will have on the project timeline, and finally other terms and conditions.  Change orders may encompass a couple different scenarios including situations where the client has chosen upgrades or spent over their allotted allowance AND also situations where something new needs to be added to the scope of work.


Learn more: Setting up a Change Order - Start to Finish



A project’s scope of work is typically composed of a combination of Specifications and Selections.  Specifications account for those items that are automatically included in the project (such as excavation work, demolition, framing materials and labor, etc.) where no client decision is required.  Selections offer options to the client and allows you to present different choices. This can include allowances (money you’ve set aside in the budget for the client to pick out their desired fixtures, paint, items, etc.) or upgrades.  Clients can communicate their decisions on these items which allow you to track an original budget versus a revised one.


Learn more: What are Specification and Selection Items?



Many of the choices made by your clients and overages spent on allowances can be added directly to a change order for further signoff.  Selections tie directly to change orders in these situations. Further still, there may be scenarios where the client asks for something new to be added to the project while the build is underway.  In these situations, you would add that new item directly from the change order but will then see that same item (added as a Selection) on the Specs & Selections page for easy reference.


Learn more: Adding Selections to Change Orders