What to Keep in Mind when Hiring a Contractor

As you begin preparing for a home remodeling project, interviewing contractors is an important step. Of course their pricing is one of the biggest factors, but their verifiable experience is of more importance. The contractor must be aware of the building codes for your area and must be able to complete the project to pass any required inspections.

Check Certifications
A remodeling contractor is required to hold certifications and insurance. It is a must that you obtain their licensing information and call to verify that the certifications are valid. This also includes verifying licensing and bonding information to ensure proper coverage. Simply looking at certification expiration dates is not good enough in this scenario.

Call References
Always call the references that are provided by a contractor. Ask questions about the project and about the contractor’s demeanor. The trick here is to ask questions that someone simply acting like a reference won’t be able to answer. This is one of the best ways to gauge a contractor’s work ethic, practices and general personality.

Verify Portfolio Information
Within a portfolio, contractors will list major companies they have been contracted to work with along with their education information. The portfolio will also include before and after photos from previous projects. It doesn’t hurt to call a few of the customers to verify that those photos were taken at their home. Verifying portfolio information is important because it proves a contractor’s experience and capabilities.

Background Check
It does not cost very much, but once you decide on a contractor or two, it is ideal to run a background check on them. Those with extensive or serious criminal histories may not be the best person to leave in your home to complete a project. If a contractor refuses a background check, dismiss them and move further down your list.

Your home and your property are important to you. It is important to take these necessary steps before hiring a contractor to ensure that the worker is a trustworthy person with the required experience and education to complete the job. Making a wrong decision can leave you with incomplete and/or unsatisfactory completion of the work requested.

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