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Ensuring that you are thorough when hiring a general contractor
Anybody can advise you to be careful and check general contractor references before signing a contract, but is that advice thorough enough?
We think not, and as a consequence combed the internet to offer you the best collective advice on things to consider when hiring a contractor.
Know what you want before you call
According to Angie Hicks, founder of the nationally famous Angie’s List which pairs contractors and consumers, she recommends that before calling a contractor you know what you want to be done and also what kind of general materials you want. If for example, you want a new living room floor, a hardwood floor, and a tile floor are two different animals.
As Angie’s List recommends, get at least three bids, and five is better, but you need to what it is you want and the type of materials involved before committing, and have those details in writing.
Ask anyone and everyone who they recommend
Want to have your kitchen remodeled. Chances are dozens of your friends and co-workers have already done it.
For one thing, can you really trust online reviews? Many contractors on their own website only post positive reviews, and many people, nothing cases like the Virginia Contractor who sued a woman claiming a revengeful review cost them a great deal of money, sued for $750,000 in damages.
Finally, many people are too lazy or busy to write reviews, and you’ll get much more honest and forthcoming reviews if you ask people who have previously hired a contractor for similar work.
Check for licenses, and complaints with the Better Business Bureau
First of all, exclude any contractor that is not accredited with the BBB. To do that, simply go to their website, and type in your city, zip code and the type of Business. Then call them and check on complaints and problems.
Ask important questions
Before accepting any bid, ask how they estimated the bid, what was the estimated cost of materials, how long till they can start the job (many contractors are booked months in advance,) and how long do they estimate the job will take. Also, be sure and ask about their licenses, whether the contractor gets all permits necessary before starting, and how much they want as a down payment.
Once you decide to go with a general contractor, have them specify everything in the contract, such as what bathroom the workers will use, whether there are subcontractors involved, what supervision will they have, and schedule payments in a gradual form.
Never pay full price upfront. In point of fact, the U.S. News Article Hiring a contractor that it is probably the best step before you get started.
Above all, before you sign a contract, be sure you and the contractor have enough communication so the job is finished to both you and the contractor’s satisfaction. With home remodeling jobs often costing $30,000 to $40,000 or even more, there is no room for confusion or misunderstanding.