5 Things to Keep in Mind When Hiring a Contractor 

It’s exciting to see a home renovation project come to life. While we can often work some DIY magic, sometimes we need to bring in the professionals. Keep these five things in mind to find the right contractor for the job and help ensure your project runs smoothly. 

1. Know What You Want Beforehand

Before you hire a contractor, have a clear vision of what you want to achieve. Knowing what you want beforehand will help prevent unnecessary changes once the project has commenced, leading to time delays. Create a detailed budget to help determine labor costs and provide a clear indication of what you can afford. Be sure to track your spending throughout the project to keep your budget on track.

2. Estimates 

To help determine the budget, obtain at least three estimates to give yourself a clear indication of the cost and caliber of work required. While the cheapest quote may be tempting, a higher quote may indicate better quality work. Consider the level of experience necessary to complete the size and scale of your project, and choose the appropriate quote to match.

3. Background Research 

While referrals can be a trustworthy resource, it pays to do your research. Look at examples of their previous work to see if the end result meets your standards. If their experience is a similar style to what you’re after, the contractor may be a good match. Read online reviews of the quality of their work and materials, and confirm they have a current license and adequate insurance coverage.

4. Contracts & Payments 

Ensure you have a comprehensive written contract before any payments are made or work begins. Your contract should include a start and end date, applicable building permits and fees, line items of products and services to be provided, payment terms, and subcontractor arrangements. The contract should also exclude you from liability. If a contractor asks you to pay in cash or upfront, consider it a red flag. 

5. Communication 

First impressions are everything. Hire a contractor who makes you feel comfortable and agrees with your ideas, work ethic, communication, and deadlines. Choose a contractor who will keep you in the loop on the progress of your project.