What to Do When Hiring a Renovation Contractor for Your Home

Home renovations not only increase the worth of your home but provide an improved standard of living for you and especially your family. You can do the renovations yourself, or hire a contractor to do the job for you. Here are six simple steps to follow when hiring a home renovation contractor:

First, ask your family and friends for skilled contractors that have had more or less the same renovations for their homes. Seek an online service that will provide pre-screened contractors to your project. Do not forget to verify the company and the business owner’s personal name with the Better Business Bureau. Inquire about each contractor’s license, workman’s comp and both property damage and individual liability insurances.

Second, narrow down your list to the best three or four possibilities by asking for a minimum of three recommended names and contact numbers for finished work from each possible contractor that is parallel to your home remodeling project. Ask each referral to let you see their completed home renovation work. Inquire about the suitability of the project and if it was finished on budget.

Third, choose one from the three of four contractors after asking from each a bid upon the same precise task and materials. Do not impulsively choose the lowest price. Keep in mind that you need to feel comfortable around the contractor that you wish to choose, especially since he or she will be in and throughout your home for the entire duration of the renovation. Clarify if each contractor has several projects and if you can anticipate if there will always be someone on site throughout the entire project.

Fourth, upon choosing the contractor put every agreement into writing. This includes an outline of the entire span of the project, including who will finance for everything from the materials to hauling the trash, and who is responsible for the demolition and clean-up. Remember a contractor charges extra for work not stated in your agreement. Know the cost of materials and electrical and plumbing fixtures by checking at the hardware store or online. You should be notified of any adjustments in brands or materials for the project. Do not forget to ask a copy of your contractor’s license and insurance binder stating that you are covered for your home renovation project.

Fifth, keep initial deposits or payments as small as possible as the construction progresses. Take note that subcontractors are capable of filing a lien on your property if they do not get any payment. Be sure that when paying each part of the finished work, you obtain a release of lien endorsed or at the very least a confirmation that your contractor is disbursing the subs on time. Never sign any letter of completion document or pay the last balances not until all the work has been approved through the last code inspections.

Lastly, be mindful that a lot of surprises can happen during an old home’s renovation. Be sure that you set aside a contingency fund for those circumstances wherein there are things that you thought would not happen, but can happen after the actual demolition has started. Take things as they progress and make certain that your entire home renovation project will get finished just the way you wanted it to be.

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