Five Tips for Picking the Perfect Contractor
Choosing the right contractor to help you bring your renovation dreams to life can be challenging. With so many options out there, it’s tricky to know where to start and who is reliable and does a good job. Settling on the perfect contractor can be the difference between a seamless renovation process and a stressful remodel which drains your pockets. To assist with the selection process, we’ve come up with a few tips to help you sift through the countless contractor options for your home renovation.
1. Do your research
Doing your research is the first step in finding the perfect contractor for your renovation. After all, you can’t settle on the right contractor if you don’t know the options that are available to you. Your research can be something as simple as a Google search, asking friends and family for suggestions or a more in-depth investigation. We suggest using websites like Home Advisor – an extensive database of home improvement experts – to get an overview of the renovation professionals in your area. Contacting your local chamber of commerce is another great option. They should be able to give you some solid recommendations. Once you’ve gotten an overview of possible contractors for your home reno, you can then compile a shortlist of your favourites to move further along the process.
2. Conduct phone interviews
When on a quest to find the right contractor, interviews are a crucial part of the process. You never want to work with a company without knowing a bit about them and soliciting the necessary information to help with decision making. During your phone interview, you want to get to know a little more about the company, their processes and expertise. This is also a good time to request the contractor’s license number. With a license number, you can then contact your local municipality to verify if the contractor is legally in business or not. Once you have all this information, you should be able to narrow your list down a bit more.
3. Arrange face to face meetings
When you’ve narrowed your list down to a few finalists, it’s time to meet them in person! This will help you get a feel of their personality and what they’re like to work with. This initial face to face meeting should let you know if both of you are a good fit for a long or short-term project. This meeting is also the perfect time to ask for more important information like project schedules, business history, references etc. Every contractor should be able to comfortably provide two to three references for you to speak to regarding their work and performance.
4. Dig deeper
Hearing what a contractor has to say about themselves is only half the journey. In order to make the right decision, we urge you to reach you to their references. Ask if you can take a look at the work that was done for them and assess it according to your standards. You should also ask about the renovation process. Ask if they found it easy working with the contractor, if the project was delivered on time, and any other question you feel is necessary. This step should give you a more accurate depiction of the experts you’re about to team up with. By now, you should now have a solid knowledge of their work and work ethic.
5. Get itemized bids
Finally, you should request an itemized bid from every contractor you’re interested in working with. This should give you a clear idea of how much your project will cost. An itemized bid should include labour costs, material costs, permit fees and any other expenses required to bring your renovation dreams to life. Compare bids from all the contractors to see which is best for your budget – but, be wary of bids that are too low. As a general rule, if it’s too good to be true, it usually is!
Thinking of renovating your home? Get in touch with us today!