How To Confidently Hire General Contractors
General contractors can do many things that you want done around your home. However you need to know what to look for when you choose one.
Getting Recommendations Outweighs Risks
Hands down, the best way to hire general contractors is to get a recommendation from someone who has used these professionals in the past. Talk to friends and family. Look for references provided by the contractor as a steppingstone into getting additional information. If you do not know anyone who has hired a professional in the recent past, head to your local lumberyard and ask for recommendations on qualified professionals. Who pays their bills on time? Which ones buy only the best materials for jobs?
Ask Pointed Questions During Phone Interviews
You are hiring this professional for a high paying job, not unlike hiring managers do for big companies. Schedule a phone interview and ask the big questions. Discuss the types of projects the company tends to work on. Are they like your own? Do they have a list of previous clients they are willing to share or photos of the jobs completed? How long has this professional worked with the subcontractors he or she uses? What steps does the contractor take in qualifying those subcontractors? Does the company have a license to operate in the city you are in?
Ask the Tricky Questions
Knowing the answers to some pointed questions can also help you to see just what type of professional you are working with on this job. For example, express concern about getting a building permit. Do not work with a company that says you do not need one and suggests that you can just forgo getting one. Ask about getting cheap materials. Do not use a contracting company that is okay with cutting safety regulations, violating code requirements, or using sub-quality materials on your project. Look for those who can do a great job for a fair price instead.
General contractors are professionals who should know the industry and the project type inside and out. To do this, they must have a good working knowledge of local codes and regulations as well as the types of materials you hope to use. Look for those with modern skills and extensive training whom you feel comfortable working with on your big project. Once you find the right company, you will come back time and time again.
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