Oftentimes, home renovation and home improvement projects can be too large and difficult or complicated for you to take on all by yourself. In these cases, it is often a good idea to hire a contractor to do the work for you. However, hiring the right contractor can sometimes be a bit of a challenge. While there are many great contractors out there who will surely do the work you need at a price you can afford, others could leave you with too big a bill, subpar work, and/or legal problems, if you fail to vet them correctly. Here are a few things to watch out for:
Make Sure Your Contractor Is Licensed and Insured
Two of the most important things you can do from the moment you begin considering hiring a certain contractor is to get ahold of their license number and proof that they are insured. If they are unlicensed, the work they are doing could technically be illegal. If they are uninsured, any potential accidents or mistakes on the job could end up coming out of your wallet.
Do Your Homework
Understanding how the contracting process works is key to your satisfaction as a customer. Be sure to understand steps like negotiating a contract (remembering to compare prices and offers between companies) and to figure out which specialties your contractor works in--as well as what they might not be capable of doing themselves--before you make any final decisions or payments.
Be Clear About What You Want
Being direct and clear with your subcontractor about your needs is one of the most important keys to staying happy while the work is being done, and receiving an end product that is up to your standards. This means not only letting the contractors know what kind of work needs to be done, but also giving them guidelines as to what they can and cannot do during the process. If you need them to come and go at certain times of the day, there is likely a contractor who will accommodate those wishes, as long as you express them--and are willing to pay for what you get.
Understand Your Own Part in the Process
While the point of hiring a contractor is obviously to take work off of your shoulders and pass it to someone with more experience, there are still quite a few things that you might have to do in order to make sure the process goes smoothly. This typically includes accommodating the workers in your house and meeting regularly with those in charge.