How to Find a Contractor You Can Trust: Who to Ask

At some point, every business needs the services of a contractor. It may be for construction, renovation, remodeling, or even landscaping. Professional commercial contractors are able to do the assigned jobs swiftly and efficiently. However, if a company chooses the wrong contractor, it may lead to delays, poor work, or even more serious problems. One of the best ways to find a reliable contractor is to look for references; use these guidelines with asking for contractor referrals from your contacts.

The Best Places to Start Looking

Asking around is a great way to find a contractor. Go to places where the contractors are known professionally for information: paint stores, building supply stores, etc. Make a few phone calls to neighbors and friends, and see if they recommend a certain contractor. Look for local area contractors who have an established reputation for being reliable.

Once a business has decided on one or two contractors that they would like to work with, look at the upcoming project and have the contractors provide an estimate of the length of time and price for them to complete the project. Getting an estimate from each contractor allows companies to compare prices and look at the advantages and disadvantages of each contractor. Use other resources to assist in making the decision. Check the Better Business Bureau to see if there have been any complaints against the contractor. If there was, find out if the complaints were valid, and if any disciplinary action was taken. Businesses should also consult the Construction Industry Licensing Board to see if the contractors have ever committed a crime or have done a negligent job.

Analyze the Contractor’s History and Avoid Subcontractors

Ask the contractors if they have any work samples. Looking at a contractor’s past work allows companies to observe the quality and variety of the contractor to make the best decision. Check with the contractors to make sure that they are doing the work and will not subcontract it to someone else. This is especially important for large jobs.

Make Sure that the Contract is Transparent

Once a business has completed the process to find a contractor, there are other rules and guidelines to follow. Have a clearly defined contract in place before the project begins. The contract should have precise details on cover costs, the items that are being worked on, exact start and finish dates, and written specifications. Everything should be upfront pertaining to the contract.

Potential Warning Signs of a Bad Contractor

Businesses should also be aware of potential bad signs when trying to find a contractor. The best contractors have an established reputation for excellence and a long list of references, so avoid contractors who cannot provide references. Contractors should have a phone number that they can be reached at. Avoid contractors who try to skip getting the building permit or have someone else obtain it. Contractors who want a quick decision and only accept cash payments should also be avoided.

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