After hours spent on choosing colors, materials, furniture, and much more, you and your designer are finally ready to remodel; but there is one important piece of that puzzle missing. That piece is hiring a good contractor, which is certainly not an easy job. In order to find a perfect match, you can compose a list of questions to ask your contractor and work with your designer to find a perfect fit.
Here are a few questions we recommend asking your contractor before beginning a remodeling project.
1. What’s your business history?
It is crucial to ask some basic information about the contractor’s past work, like where they are physically based and how their business is structured. Ask a contractor to bring you a list of references from people with projects similar to yours, and don’t be shy about contacting these references.
2. Are you licensed and insured?
Contractors should have a state-issued home builder’s license, as well as an additional local business license, so make sure you ask about that.
3. Who are your main suppliers?
Contractors usually have connections with suppliers. You can ask about them in order to check their level of quality and the contractor’s reliability.
4. How do you handle callbacks?
You need to hire a contractor who is willing to return to the site to fix any building-related problems that may arise.
5. Do you belong to any professional building organizations, and if so which ones?
Membership in some organization is often a requirement for any professional licensing, but it is also a good indicator of a contractor’s knowledge and reputability.
6. Who will be there while the job is getting done?
The answer to this question could vary depending on the size and structure of the company. Make sure to ask your contractor who will be responsible for supervising subcontractors and who is the person you can call with any questions about the job.
7. How will you protect the property?
This is an important question to ask your contractor before a demolition since it is better to have a clear idea of how the construction area is going to be organized.
8. Can you give me a time line?
Before you hire a contractor, you should ask for a fixed start date and completion date. These dates should be a part of a formal written agreement, along with a list of materials that’ll be needed and timetable of the work that’ll be done.
9. Are you willing to sign a time and materials contract?
The only acceptable answer to this question is yes since it is the one that leaves you protected when it comes to the timetable and material fees.
10. Will you take care of all necessary permits and inspections?
It is good to know from the very start whether you are expected to handle the permits or whether the contractor will take care of this.
11. Would you please itemize your bid?
If you get an itemized bid, it will show costs for every element of the job, including demolition, finishing carpentry, plumbing, electrical work, lighting fixtures, and painting. That way, you can see everything that goes into your total bid amount.