Tips on finding the best remodeling contractors
1. Stay Local
When you hire local contractors for your projects it means the remodeling company has a permanent business location in your area. Additionally, the remodeling pro will have a local telephone number, business license and local references available upon request, all of which you can verify. And probably the most important thing is that they are nearby and if any unexpected issues with the work performed, you can always track the home remodeling contractor down.
2. Check Remodeling Contractor Credentials
The first step in performing due diligence on home improvement contractors is checking their record with the Better Business Bureau
. Ask the remodeling contractor for a list of references and make sure to contact them. All reputable companies know that the best way to assure new customers of the quality of their work is to let past customers speak on their behalf. If you find the past customers to be satisfied, this is usually a sign that you are dealing with a reputable home improvement contractor. Also it is a good idea to ask family and friends on their experiences with local home improvement contractors. It is also a good idea to check all available reviews online. Checking sites like Angie’s List
will cost you a few dollas, but is well worth it, compared to costs you could incur by hiring the wrong local contractor. Also check local TV stations and local newspapers for any reports of consumer advocacy.
3. Check the Local Contractor’s License and Insurance
After creating a list of residential remodeling contractors, narrow things down by looking up their license numbers and insurance certificates. This will help you to find a contractor that’s right for your project. Regardless of the state you are in, all contractors are required to have both. Once you have their license information, you can call the city to determine whether the
you are investigating are legally permitted to do business in your area. Making sure that their insurance certificate is current will ensure that you are covered in the event if anything goes wrong.
4. Don’t Pay Up Front When You Find a Contractor
It is common for home contractors to request money before the start of a job to cover their material costs, but be wary of a home renovation contractor who asks you to pay for the entire project up front. This is a big red flag that the home remodel contractor may not be legitimate, especially if this is not a local contractor.
5. Ask for Copies of Receipts
Many home remodeling companies ask for a deposit to cover their material costs before the project begins. If you make any such payments, make sure to always ask for receipts for any money exchanging hands. In many instances insurance companies require all payments to be documented in order to process any claims. However, even if no insurance company is involved, keeping receipts is always a good idea.
5. Get the Remodeling Estimate in Writing
Before the project begins make sure to get an estimate on the total costs of both labor and materials. This quote should be written for the final costs. It is a good idea to get multiple home remodeling quotes before the start of any project and compare them side by side. The quote should also include a provision that you must be notified of any changes to the final price that has been agreed upon. This will have the effect of protecting you from any unexpected charges when it is time to pay for the project. If any changes to the initial estimate are needed, make sure this is documented on the original quote and that both you and the local contractor sign off on it. Also the home improvement quote should include all information on any guarantees on work performed or warranties. Make sure to keep the home improvement estimate in a safe place, should the need arise for any legal action against the home remodeling contractor.