Contractors provide the services required to complete a specific task. You may have purchased a fixer-upper that requires major renovations. You could also be planning a home renovation that will add enough square footage for a new dining room and home office or installing a new shower. No matter which renovations you’re planning, you’ll need to hire home renovation experts.
Hiring professionals to work on your home can be a stressful process. Referring to these tips can help you navigate the hiring process and ensure you choose the best contractor for the job.
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Prepare a renovation plan.
If you purchased a fixer-upper or bought a small house that needs an addition, you may be planning major renovations throughout your home. Your first step should be identifying the core projects you want to complete and prepare a budget. When possible, it’s a good idea to plan major renovations together to reduce the amount of time you’re displaced because you may need to put most of your possessions in storage or move out of your home while renovations are underway.
Talk to your realtor.
Your real estate agent has extensive knowledge about your house and neighborhood. They understand what went into finding a dream home you loved, so they will understand how vital the renovations are. There’s a good chance that you’ve already discussed the essential characteristics of your ultimate dream home before becoming a homeowner, and they’re familiar with the changes you want to make to transform your property. Since some contractors may be better suited to different tasks, seek referrals from people who understand the nature of the projects you’re planning. Realtors are in a position to hear about the pros and cons of working with different contractors in your area, making it likely your realtor can refer some reputable contractors suited to your renovation needs.
Seek other referrals.
Ask family members, friends, and colleagues if they know reputable contractors who provide the services you need. It’s a good idea to get referrals from people who’ve hired contractors and been satisfied with their work. If your family and friends hired contractors who don’t serve your neighborhood, you could still get tips from them to help you navigate the hiring process.
Interview multiple contractors and check their backgrounds.
Don’t hire the first contractor you meet. Take time to interview several contractors to ensure you feel comfortable with the one you hire. Different contractors may highlight potential issues or needs you haven’t considered, while contractors with less experience may not think about those issues. The more contractors you talk to, the more confident you’ll be assessing their knowledge and professionalism.
Meeting a contractor isn’t enough to make a final decision. Investigate the contractor to determine if they’re credible. Your state’s consumer protection office, the Better Business Bureau, and your local home inspector all have records of complaints against companies. Ensuring you hire a contractor without extensive complaints against them will alleviate your concerns about hiring the wrong contractor.
You should also ensure the contractor you hire is licensed and has appropriate insurance.
Run a background check on their team.
Whether you’re renovating your first home or transforming your current property into your dream home, it’s a good idea to know who’s gaining access to your property. Ask contractors for a list of staff members or subcontractors they use. Ideally, they’ll provide you with each team member’s first name, last name, and state of residence. Knowing what town each person lives in will narrow down the search. You can use this information to look up mugshots and review arrest records for any team members who’ve been arrested. You may not want someone who has a record for breaking and entering to be familiar with your home’s layout, for example. Alternatively, if someone has been arrested for participating in a protest, you may not be concerned with their presence on the company’s team.
Preparing a renovation plan and seeking referrals from your realtor, family, friends, and other colleagues can help you identify reputable contractors you may consider hiring. Take time to interview multiple candidates, check for complaints against their company, and check for arrest records for any staff or subcontractors who may have access to your property before choosing who to hire.