What you should know about working with Contractors
By: Glenn Whitehead
Working with Contractors may be the solution if you find you’ve got a little (or a lot) more than you want to tackle alone.. While this may seem like a simple task, there are many issues to consider. Let’s start at the beginning. What type do you need? In home repair or improvement, there are two basic levels:General and Specialty Trade or (Subcontractors). A General is someone who manages and oversees the entire project, from ordering and delivering materials, hiring and supervising subcontractors, to acting as an adviser or consultant to the homeowner. Subs, generally perform just one phase of the project,such as:
Who you hire to perform the work on your house is a huge decision for several reasons. You will be spending your hard earned money, you will, in many cases, be permanently altering the look and design of your home, and you will be bringing strangers into your home, around your family and personal possessions. The following are steps you should follow in the selection process.
* Do background checks. There are many resources
available on the internet, many of them free, to perform checks on the business and personal histories. Check with local government, trade organizations, and the Better Business Bureau for starters. Even if people you know have recommended them, you can never be too cautious.
* Try to use companies that were recommended by someone you know. Ask friends, family, and co-workers if they have had the same type of work done and who they used. try to get recommendations from people you feel have similar standards and preferences to yours.
* Always ask for references,Then, CHECK THEM! I have provided references to hundreds of customers, but I only know of one that actually called and checked them. Any business with any qualifications at all, should be able to provide at least 10 references. But, if you don't call, it really can't do you much good. You may think "What's the use in calling? They wouldn't have given the reference unless they knew it would be good." You would be surprised how many guys think they're doing a great job and pleasing the customer, when in fact, just the opposite is true. Have a list of specific questions ready when you call. Our
Do It Yourself Contractor Kit
comes complete with a fill-in-the-blank questionnaire,and other forms and info for this process.
* Prepare a detailed list of all the items you want to get bids on. This is called a scope of work and it will help to insure that nothing is left out and that all of the bidding Contractors are on equal ground.
* Look at more than just the price. The cheapest price is not always the best price. Consider personality. Is this someone you'll be comfortable working with? Are they prompt and polite? If someone is late or doesn't return calls during the bidding or sales process, chances are, it's only going to get worse.
As you can see, there is a lot to think about before signing the
. I know it's exciting when you're planning a project, but, never rush in to a decision this big. Our Do It Yourself Home Repair Kit provides you with a blueprint for planning and managing your repairs as well as fill-in-the-blank forms and guidelines for dealing with Contractors. For more information,
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