Secrets to Finding a Reliable Contractor

Remodeling nightmares are common in the home improvement industry.

We all have either read about unsuspecting homeowners being ripped off, know someone who has, or saw something on TV.

The fact is that it is a real problem, and the only way to protect yourself from shoddy work and bad contractors, is to do your homework before you hire one by accident.

You might have a major remodeling project on the horizon and you know that you need a contractor with experience. However, how do you find one that you can rely on? Here are a few tips.

Asking questions

Don't be afraid to ask your contractor the hard questions. Those who don't ask because they assumed the contractor would perform well, have found that this step could have saved them lots of trouble and loads of money. Prepare all of your questions before hand, and when your time comes to meet with the contractor, have them in front of you while you interview them.

Are they licensed?

If a contractor does not have the sense to get the proper license to work in the area you are looking to hire for, you should not even consider hiring them. These fly by night contractors can be found pleading their case in small claim courts or on Judge Judy, daily. Stay away from any contractor who does not have a valid license.

Find out about their complaint history

There are some local business affiliations like the Better Business Bureau and the Department of Consumer Protections that keep track of complaints from consumers doing business with contractors. Call these places and give them the name of the contractor you are looking to hire. Find out the complaint history and see if the contractor has resolved it. Ideally, you would like to pick someone with a clean history, but sometimes that is hard to do.  Also, be sure to ask your contractor personally about their complaint history.


How to hire a contractorDo they have references?

If a contractor doesn't have references, you can be sure that either they are bran new to the field or the work they have done is not up to standards. To put it plainly do not hire any contractor without references, it is a rookie homeowner mistake and it can cost you thousands.

Questions to ask past clients of your contractor

  • Were they happy with the completed project?
  • Would they have done anything differently if they could start over from the beginning?
  • Was the contractor easy to work with?
  • Did the contractor complete the work on-time?
  • Was the project completed on budget?
  • Was there anything about the contractor that you should know before you hire them?

Checking Insurances

Ask your contractor for a copy of their Workmen's Compensation Insurance and General Liability Insurance certificate. Once you have the copies, ensure that the dates are valid. In addition, you should call the insurance carrier of both policies and ask that they verify that the current policy is still active with the same coverage specified on the insurance certificate. Sometimes shoddy contractors fake these documents, because most homeowners who obtain them never call the insurance carrier to validate their authenticity.

Find out where they do business from

For small jobs you may feel comfortable hiring someone that works from their truck, but for large jobs like home additions, you may feel more comfortable with an established contractor who has an established office, and permanent phone number.

How To Hire A Contractor? - Details, it is all about the details

Get your estimate in writing and make sure that all the details about your job are written in there. If it is not written down, then the contractor does not have to deliver it. Just imagine if you went to court with the contractor, would their estimate and contract protect them or you?


Now that you are well prepared, use the form below to get in touch of a true professional that can meet and exceed all of these expectations by filing out the form below!

 
 

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