Biggest Mistakes When Hiring a Contractor
It seems as most have experienced a rough time with a run of the mill contractor who's greatly let them down, wasted time or worse, money. Unfortunately its all too common, and because of that Contractors and Remodelers tend to get a bad rap when it comes to just about everything. Most is for good reason, however not all contractors are built the same. Here's how you avoid hiring the wrong one!
# 1: Referrals AND References
While this might seem redundant or expected, there's a reason for that. This is so crucial to ask around for someone who had a positive experience with a contractor. This isn't to say that you should pick up the phone and schedule them to start work tomorrow. Everyone knows a "contractor" who might do some side work. Not to say that these people aren't capable, because some are. The key here is to ask the contractor for past projects, past clients and truly vet them to ensure the level of quality expected is there.
# 2: Hiring because they are likeable
All too often we see people hire the friendly contractor who sweet talks the client. It's important to have that relationship with you contractor, but basing their quality off just their personality is a disaster waiting to happen. Your decision of hiring must be based off experience, quality, time management, qualification and their communication.
# 3: Lowest Bid Contractor
Here's one that shouldn't shock you too much. The lowest bid contractor is often times the worst and most costly choice to make. When choosing a contractor to perform a quality job, it will be costly when done right and wrong. Here's why, when you hire a low cost contractor the result is typically a half-done poorly executed project. Leaving you only two options, live with the poor quality or hire the proper contractor to redo the work already done and paid for!
# 4: Not getting a written contract
When everything is written your back is covered. Some contractors may balk at the idea of a written contract, it is of upmost importance. Some sort of legal document that clarifies the scope of work, payment process, date of completion and any other essential details must be included and signed by both parties.
# 5: Not having clear communication
Having a stranger in your home can feel quite invasive at times. Having a clear cut conversation with them can greatly help that feeling. If you are not comfortable with them working at certain times, let them know. Ask them who will all be performing the work, it's worse if you've talked to one person and 15 others show up. Not knowing what you are responsible for is another big issue that tends to arise, just have a quick conversation to clear up anything you are unsure of and it's bound to make a much smoother process for you and them.
Go to the hardware stores near you and ask the people working for who they would use if they had a project going on!
When hiring a contractor it can be tough to ensure you follow each of these tips, taking the time to vet and qualify for your next project can save a lot of headache.