A contractor can make or break your home improvement project experience. Whether you are replacing your siding, adding a new addition, finishing a basement, or anything else -- finding the right contractor is the most important step you’ll take. However, finding the perfect contractor for your project is not always an easy task. It can be difficult to know where to begin, what questions to ask, and what qualifications to look for.
There’s much more to finding a contractor than comparing prices. The wrong contractor could leave you over budget or with a voided warranty. This guide details all of the important steps that will lead you to the right contractor for your project.
Ask friends and neighbors
Speaking to people you know who have recently completed a home improvement project is the best place to start. They will be able to recommend local contractors and will give you their honest opinion of the experience. If you’re wondering what to ask them, here are some suggestions that will get you the information you need:
- Were you pleased with the quality of the workmanship?
- Was the contractor responsive and communicative?
- Was the job completed within the timeframe and budget that was agreed upon?
- Would you hire this contractor again?
In the digital age, you can get any information about a contractor online. Customers are often eager to review their renovation experiences, so most contractors have a number of reviews available online. Take time to read through a number of them to get a complete sense of the contractor’s work style. Keep an eye out for mentions of their communication skills, workmanship quality, and how they handled any changes or surprises during the process. Some good websites to find reviews on are Angie’s List, Yelp, Google, and Facebook.
Look for images from past project
Many contractors, especially those with updated websites, will showcase their past work online. These images give you a sense for the contractor’s abilities and can also serve as inspiration in designing your project.
Ask for licensing and insurance
If you’ve found a contractor you’re interested in, be sure to check for their licensing and insurance information. Many states require employees to be insured, but it’s important to confirm as you don’t want to be held liable if an injury were to occur. Additionally, if your state requires that contractors be licensed, be sure to ask for a copy before committing.
Be wary of the lowest bid
Sometimes things are just too good to be true. This also can apply in the renovation world, and while not always true, many times the lowest quote is not what it seems to be. Contractors may leave out additional labor costs or cut corners to win you over with a low quote. Make sure to ask any references about the accuracy of the contractor’s bids and make sure you completely understand the quote before committing.
Product warranties are not the only important warranty for a project. While many manufacturers provide warranties for their products, be sure to look for a contractor that includes a strong workmanship warranty as well. Often, contractors do not provide workmanship warranties which means that issues that arise after installation might not be covered by insurance. However, there are contractors out there who will provide you with a workmanship warranty, so seek out one of them if you want to be fully protected.
Look for options
A major remodeling project is a great way to visually upgrade your house. Without product style options, creating a look that suits your tastes is challenging. When it comes to brands there are numerous style, color, and texture options available on the market, so look for a contractor who installs a range of products. If a contractor only allows you to pick from a limited range of products, they’re probably not the right fit for you.
Work with HireHaven
If you’re ready to take your first step towards finding the right contractor, we’re here to help you get going. After one in-home consultation with our licensed expert, we’ll gather bids from vetted contractors in our network. Then, our expert will help you translate and compare bids so you can find the best contractor for your roofing project. To get started, call us at 888.392.4236 or visit HireHaven.com.
By following these steps, you’ll be starting your home remodeling project off on the right foot. It’s important to take your time with this process to prevent the project from becoming a headache. With the right contractor you’ll be able to complete a major upgrade to your home seamlessly.