Good Afternoon All,
Today, I’ll be explaining the few things you should do before hiring a contractor for any of your renovation projects.
One thing you should always do, even though it will require you to take time off your hands is to review your potential contractor’s references. Typically, the contractor will always carry their references on them. Either as a physical copy such as a brochure/documents or an electronic copy on their phones/tablets or laptops. They know you will be asking these, so they’ll keep one handy. We highly recommend that you review their current clients, as their opinions will tell you whatever or not the contractor is serious about your project or just looking for a quick buck.
This is a must have for professional contractors, there’s is no reason you shouldn’t be asking them if they have these documents. The worker’s compensation insurance protects you, just in case one of their own is injured during the duration of the project. While the General Liability insurance, is meant to protect your home in case of damage caused by the contractor and his/her team that includes the sub-trades. We recommend you ask for a copy of this document and double check that expiration date. You also have the option to call their insurance company and check if it’s in effect. Remember, this is your home and your safety, please take your time and assess the quality of your contractor.
Lastly, the contract. While most contracts are typical and almost always follow the same format when it comes to contractors. We recommend you review these specific items on the contract, timing, sub-trades and of course the payment schedule. Realistically the timing will almost never finish on the date that the contractor says it will, but don’t get discourage. Reasons why, the renovation aren’t completed on time are due to several factors such as, they might find something unexpected inside the walls/ceiling that they will have to take time removing/alternating. Or the materials they’re using for your project is out of stock, sub-trades’ schedule delayed could also be an example. On that note, you should research the sub-trades as well. Even if your contractor recommends them, its better to be safe than sorry. Most times, the contractor will have several sub-trades on hand. Next, the payment schedule, while this is the most common decision factor while shopping for contractors, it shouldn’t be the only reason why. For example, if you quote 3 different contractors and they price your project $100, $50 and $25. You shouldn’t pick the $25 quote just because they’re the cheapest, it could be they wouldn’t completed it in time or they plan to do a sloppy job, etc. On the other hand, the $100 quote is way out of your price range, they might prioritize your project, provide their best sub-trades and materials but it’s out of your budget. We recommend the middle-man, the $50 quote. This tells us that they have a firm understanding of what they need to do, provide budget limited materials and the average sub-trade that can get the work done right and within budget/timing.