Giving a new lease of life to your property is exciting. Whether it’s a new bathroom, kitchen or full-extension, it’s not likely something that you’ll be able to do yourself.
That’s when it’s time to call in the professionals.
The Importance Of Choosing The Right People For The Job
Home renovations can be costly, so you need to be able to trust the company completing the work. After all, it’s your home, and you want it to be perfect. Finding the right general contractor is vital and will reduce the risk that you will have to resort to legal action for substandard work or material.
Here are a few things you need to do when searching for the right general contractor.
Get Personal Recommendations & Read Reviews
Ask friends, family or colleagues if they can recommend any contractors to you. Ideally, they should have had work completed themselves rather than knowing the friend of a friend who’s brother has a construction firm.
If you don’t have anyone to ask, find a local relevant Facebook group and ask for recommendations there.
Online reviews are also a great place to look for a true picture. Even the best companies will have one of two bad reviews, but if you are finding a pattern of unhappy customers then this should be a huge red flag. Better to steer clear.
Before you engage a contractor, be sure to get some references from previous customers.
Make Sure They Have Completed Similar Work
A contractor who generally does loft conversions might not be the best person to fit your new kitchen and vice versa. There are a lot of transferable skills in contract work but make sure that the company you’re looking at has done some similar work before.
If you’re planning on using any specialist materials or finishes, make sure they’ve worked with those materials before.
Most contractors will have a website and social media presence, so a quick search should let you identify who has the right kind of experience. Any online photos should be of their best work, so if they don’t look up to scratch then it’s likely their general standards are even worse.
Check Their Credentials
Every contractor should have the necessary insurance, qualifications, and certifications as laid out by state law.
Don’t be shy about asking to see evidence of these. Any good contractor should be happy to provide them, and if they give you any excuses, you should walk away.
Get More Than One Price, But Don’t Let It Be The Only Factor
If your renovation budget is tight, it’s tempting to go for the cheapest offer and hope that everything turns out well. Don’t let a temptingly low price sway you without doing a bit of research.
It’s good practice to get a few prices to make sure you aren’t being ripped off, but if you get a quote that is much lower than the others, you have to ask yourself why. Are they going to be cutting corners in terms of quality of materials and workmanship? It’s a false economy if you have to pay someone else to fix any mistakes.