What to Look for In a Contractor

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What to Look for In a Contractor

Odds are, if a person owns a home, at some point they will find a need to hire a contractor. While this may seem like as easy a task as calling the first listing found in a phone book or Google search, that haphazard approach will lead to headaches and wasted money down the road. However, a few easy steps will make the hiring process an easy and rewarding one.

1. The first step in finding a good contractor is to get recommendations. If a neighbor or friend has just had a similar job done that was impressive a homeowner can ask for information regarding the contractor. They can also ask around in social groups, seeing if someone at church, country clubs, or P.T.A meetings has had work they were satisfied with completed lately. Nothing will give a person as good an idea of a contractor’s level of quality as actually receiving reviews and understanding the different types of insurance involved. EcontractorsInsurance.com lists different types of contractor insurance you may not have even considered, such as inspector’s insurance and builder’s risk.

2. After the searching is finished, and a few names are gathered, it is now time to do a little researching. It is a good idea to call the contractors that have been found through recommendations, and ask them if they have more references. They should be willing to give the names of other home owners they have worked for and point toward some of their other jobs. Then the homeowner can get a better idea about the contractor’s body of work.

3. It would also be a good idea to take a look at a job that they are still in the process of renovating. This would show a great deal of information regarding the way the contractor works. It will be obvious if they keep a neat work site, and show how well the contractor’s laborers work together.

4. The next move is getting quotes. It is well known that it is good practice to get more than one estimate when getting a car repaired, and this same advice is true when finding someone to work on a house. This will give the consumer a good idea of what the market price is, and it will give them the ability to negotiate a better price. After all best prices are in, the homeowner can then weigh all factors and make a decision.

5. When a contractor is finally chosen, there is one last step before agreeing in writing. At this point, the homeowner has likely talked to the contractor over the phone a couple of times, but there is a good chance a face to face meeting has not taken place. If that is true, it is time to set up an appointment to talk, shake hands, and get a good feel for the person. Once this step is completed, and all has gone well, the agreement can be made, and the work can begin.

6. A very smart move would be to find out if the contractor is insured and look into getting coverage. While it’s not expected, a contractor could become injured on the job. Insurance helps take care of costs involved with accidents or injuries.

Image Courtasy: Wikipedia