Caution and skill are at the center of good remodeling work. You need to be sure about the credibility of the contractor and quality of materials he uses. Price is a key factor to consider, but it is not the only key thing. Here are tips to guide you to get the best deal.
Compile a list from reliable referrals
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Begin by reaching out to family and acquaintances about a good contractor that they know. Approach a building inspector that you know to give you contacts of good contractors they know. The inspector will certainly tell you which professional remodeling contractors comply with local building codes. Even better, ask your lumberyard to direct you to remodelers with good payment records and an eye for quality materials. Check with the National Association of the Remodeling Industry for a list of certified members in your area.
Interview contractors on phone
With your list of prospects, call each contractor. Let your questions revolve around the size of the projects they can handle, financial references from bank and suppliers, their current contracts, client portfolio, and period of contract with subcontractors. Feedback to these questions will shed light on their accessibility, trustworthiness, priority to your work, and efficiency of work flow.
Scrutinize the outcome of interviews
Come up with a list of four or five professional remodelers after the interview, and set up in-person interviews. Personality is important, but it is not the only determinant. Find out about their work history.Consult the consumer protection agency and Better Business Bureau in your local town to establish if there were any contractual breaches with suppliers or subcontractors. Go on with the research and check with previous clients to get their word about the contractor’s reliability and results of earlier projects. Go to one of the sites where they are currently working on a project and check how their work is going on. Focus on the neatness and safety measures they’ve put on the site. Examine the character of the workers in terms of courtesy and care for homeowner’s property.
Ask for a quotation
You now have a contractor whose work ethics and efficiency are to your satisfaction. Acquaint yourself with details of contractor’s blueprint for the project. At this point, lay out your needs and financial plan of the project to the contractor. Let two or three different contractors each present a bid with a clear allocation to materials, labor, administrative expenses, and profit margins. Typically, materials consume not less than 40 percent of the entire projects budget. The rest should take care of overheads and profit margin, which should range between 15 and 20 percent.
Lastly, develop a realistic payment schedule that you and the contractor agree on. And please, do everything in writing.