10 Ways to Find an Honest Contractor

10 Ways to Find an Honest Contractor

A good contractor is one that does not end up costing you more money on a building project than they should. A project can easily go wrong and be costly if you decide on hiring the wrong contractor. According to reports, the better business bureau logged in close to 10,000 complaints along in the previous year. These were against contractors and is a clear indication that many Americans were having it difficult to find reputable contractors. Among the complaints filed, those which were against contractors were by far the most prevalent. Even though there have been a numerous amount of complaints filed against some contractors, it still shows that a lot of those contractors seemed to operate honestly and within the law.

Below are 9 ways you can use in order to find the right contractor that you are able to trust with your building project:

  1. Asking for referrals:

    Using direct referrals can turn out to be useful when you want to find the right contractor. This can either be a family member, an immediate neighbour preferably someone who may have successfully completed the same project etc. In other words, someone you trust.

  2. Getting and comparing quotes:

    Even though this may sound really silly and obvious, there are certain contractors who will provide quotes over the phone without even seeing the sight. You need to avoid these and make sure that you get the contractor to come out and see the sight before you are given the quote, after which you can compare and choose the one which suits you the best.

  3. Contact references:

    Before finally pledging to commit to a particular contractor, take your time to talk with some other clients, that the contractor has done work for, so you know how their services were like. Reputable contractors possess lists of what clients they have worked with before and you should be able to get that for reference purposes. A contractor without numbers and names of previous clients is normally one you should avoid.

  4. Verifying liability insurance:

    One should note that it may not be required that a contractor has a liability insurance when it comes to qualifying for work in a specific state, but it should be one of your requirements for the contractor that you want to hire. Just so you know the contractor’s general liability policy should be minimum a 100% of the value of your home before being considered to work on your home.

  5. Performing a detailed background check:

    This should be easy and the contractor should willingly oblige if he has absolutely nothing to hide. In addition to carrying out a detailed background check, you should also check if the financials of the contractor looks okay.

  6. Insist on credit details and bank references:

    According to reports, many contractors usually keep accounts with local suppliers. This makes it almost impossible to make large payments upfront. You should also avoid contractors without any credit at all costs. More than once there have been issues brought up about contractors who promise to do work but after being paid to end up disappearing.

  7. Get your agreement in writing:

    Focus more on hiring contractors who will draft and give you copies of the binding estimates in writing. Avoid hiring anybody who does not want a written contract. This should always be applied even when dealing with a high priced project.

  8. Engaging:

    Find a contractor that goes out of the way to engage you in order to establish the requirements for the project. A contractor who wants to involve you in the process would most definitely stand out as someone who is focused on helping you realize your dream.

  9. License:

    A contractor with good work experience is not necessarily enough. It is a good idea that you also check if the contractor has a license.

  10. Contractor software:

    Use some tools to plan and organize your construction processes and communication with contractors. This way, you can ensure transparency in your building projects.

In addition to all of the above, it is also strongly advised that you make sure to ask all of the right questions when comparing those that caught your interest besides taking into consideration the above-mentioned products or services. Remember, any contractor who keeps you in the dark might have something that they don’t want you to find out hence you should avoid such.

Contributed by GenieBelt – construction software and app for volume home builders.

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