A.Gary Ransone responds: It’s okay to use laser-printed pages, as long as all parties (not just the clients) sign. Here’s a signing procedure that has worked for me: I sign and date the last page of the contract, then initial the bottom of each page of the contract and any "attached" pages ( subcontractor bids, sketches, or other written materials referenced in the contract). I then ask the owner do the same. This eliminates any later confusion over whether or not the owner received and agreed to all pages of the contract. You can standardize this process by including at the bottom of each page a simple box that says "Initial here," with space for the required marks. (It’s not necessary to print this message; you can use an inexpensive, pre-inked rubber stamp instead.)

I always make two extra copies (printed, not photocopied) of this original contract and its attachments. I keep one copy for my files and give the owner the original and the other copy — both of which I have initialed on every page and "wet signed." The owner keeps the extra copy for his or her records, and returns the original copy to...

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