Qualities You Should Look for When Hiring a Contractor

There’s no point in candy coating it: Some contractors ruin people’s lives. Your best friend’s home remodeling project was a nightmare. The work still isn’t complete, and the work that was performed didn’t pass the county’s inspection. The contractor is nowhere to be found, and your best friend paid him thousands. How do you prevent this from happening to you? Do your research prior to signing on the dotted line.

Is He Experienced?

When it comes to household projects such as plumbing & HVAC for example, experience counts. These systems are complex, and you don’t want just anyone tinkering with them, especially your HVAC. Did you know that hundreds of people die each year from carbon monoxide poisoning? Did you also know that if your HVAC isn’t maintained properly, you could be next? When looking into a contractor for any project you are not qualified to do yourself, experience counts. It shows that this contractor knows his stuff and has been successful enough in his vocation to keep his business doors open.

Is He Experienced in Your Area?

When your best friend told you he was hiring this “great new contractor,” you felt a sense of dread in the pit of your stomach. Now you know why. Another indicator that you’re hiring an excellent contractor is if his decades of experience are in your area. This means he’s built a reputation of performing high-quality workmanship and treating his clients well. Ask for client references of all the contractors you are considering for your job, and call each one to ensure they were pleased with his work and professionalism.

Is He Willing to Provide a Detailed Estimate and Warranty?

Any contractor worth his weight in gold will provide a detailed estimate that will answer any questions you have prior to you asking them. The estimate should list all aspects of the work, including all parts and labor costs. Don’t trust a contractor who simply says, “Yeah, it’ll cost about a grand to get all this done.” Professional contractors write out everything for you in detail, and they also offer warranties where they can to back up their workmanship and the parts they use on your project.

Is He Licensed?

Finally, depending on which state you live in, all contractors, especially those who work with HVAC and plumbing systems must be licensed. They must also carry bonds and insurance. In order to determine if the contractor you are considering for your project meets your state’s requirements, go to your state’s licensing board’s website and enter his license number into the appropriate field. The information returned will include whether his license and bond are in good standing and whether he carries the required insurance.

If you perform your due diligence, chances are you will hire a contractor that will exceed your expectations. If another friend of yours had work done that he can’t stop bragging about, find out how his contractor was. Word-of-mouth is the best advertising, and once you have a list of maybes, make sure they’re in good standing with their former customers and the state, and then ask for estimates. You’ll find your perfect contractor yet.

Image credit servicemarksolutions.com
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  1. Remodeling can be a rewarding experience or a nightmare. Ask a lot of questions before hiring a contractor is a must, all your check points are valid and important. I know a young couple that hired someone with no insurance that gave them a low quote and then left the project undone. So instead of enjoying the remodel, they are now looking at the unfinished work and have to hire someone else to finished.


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