While hiring a contractor isn’t difficult, selecting the correct contractor for the task. Whether you’re doing a modest remodel, an extension, or a whole house build, the contractor is something you can’t afford to get wrong. You’ve undoubtedly heard horror stories of folks who spent a lot of money on their dream homes, only to wind up with a shabby dwelling. That’s what happens when you pick the wrong contractor for the task. If you find a quality contractor, that’s the best-case situation.
Finding the right contractor for the task will determine the timeliness and quality of the work and the amount of mental and financial stress you’ll have to deal with. You have to keep a few things when choosing a contractor to ensure you get the best results.
1. Think about how long they’ve been in business.
Associated General Contractors of Encino, CA, have been in the construction industry. As a result, they’re a better bet than a contractor who’s either new to the company or plans to drive 50 miles to your project. A contractor who has been doing business in the region for a long time would have built up a local network of subcontractors and suppliers and a local reputation to maintain.
2. Determine whether the contractor’s bid is an estimate or a fixed-price contract.
Some project contractors treat their bids as estimates, which means the final price might be higher. Instead, seek a bid with a set price. If a contractor says too many unknowns regarding the task to give a fixed price, strive to remove the unknowns. If you can’t resolve the unknowns, limit the project specifications to what he intends to accomplish. You can do a change order and a written mini-bid for new work if further work is required.
3. Check to see if they are licensed and insured.
Surprisingly, a significant number of contractors are neither licensed nor insured. Many people don’t think to ask their contractors if they’re licensed and insured, but it’s crucial to know before you start. Although using an unlicensed and uninsured contractor may save you money upfront, if something goes wrong with the job and the contractor is not permitted and insured, the homeowner is responsible for any damage or mistakes. It’s essential to get as much information as possible about your contractor’s qualifications when making such a significant investment as your house.
4. Take into account how many projects they are currently working on.
While there isn’t a right or wrong way to handle this, knowing how many projects your project contractor will be working on concurrently with yours is helpful. Otherwise, it’s more likely that the contractor will put your house on the backburner. For example, bathroom remodeling Encino, Los Angeles, has a large enough crew to support all of the initiatives they’re working on, irrespective of the number of projects handled.
5. Consider the role they play in construction projects.
While every contractor and builder is different, finding out your general contractor’s role in the project can provide more information. The most crucial thing is that the project has an adequate structure to function successfully, whether doing day-to-day work or focusing on budgeting, scheduling, and training.
6. Inquire about customers, vendors, and subcontractors.
Asking your general contractor for customer recommendations can indicate how they worked on previous projects and interacted with their clients. However, if you can speak with their vendors and subcontractors, you’ll better understand their work methodology. It’s also helpful to know who else you’ll be working with.
7. Think about their average timetable and per-square-foot budget.
If your building contractor has previously worked on a property similar to yours, they will likely have a decent sense of their budget and timeframe per square foot. While the timetable and budget are prone to change as the project progresses, you should be able to manage how much you add from there if you can create an estimate with your team up front.
8. Remember how they used to communicate with their customers.
Setting expectations for how you’ll interact with your contractor upfront is a great way to get the partnership off to a good start. After all, you’re going to be working together for a while! Even if they don’t have an immediate answer yet, a same-day response from a general contractor is a positive indicator that they are on top of things.