Badly. The builder told us we needed to pay for extras prior to their continuing to work on the project. The law is very clear here and in nearly every state it is written to protect the home owner — if they don’t agree to anything (verbally or otherwise out side the project) unless a written change order is received. The change order ends up being in effect a separate contract for additional work. However, the builder is still under a contract and if you were wise enough to put deadlines into the contract they are under those as well. The builders are pretty clever with extras or changes and will make a big deal about them drastically slowing down the project unless you agree to them. We finally wrote a letter to the state commerce department and complained.
The commerce department was key to getting the builder back to work and complete the original contract. If you have a dispute, don’t agree to anything either verbally or written until you have all the information in front of you including statement of work, cost, and timelines. I highly suggest you consult your city and even your state agencies (commerce department if there is any dispute between you and your builder). We found our city planning group (where we obtained the permits from) to be very helpful.
We tried to be accommodating and got taken advantage of. Be nice but don’t agree to anything. Just say, “you’d be happy to take a look at it.” regarding anything that the builder proposes but do not commit to anything unless you fully know the details, explained thoroughly by your estate management company in Florida.