Qualities to Look for When Hiring a General Contractor
With DIY projects on the rise, many people are trying to cut costs (and corners) by carrying out construction projects on their own properties. Though these undertakings are fun as a pastime, they’re typically only a good idea for small objects or just-for-fun aesthetic materials. Even if you have prior knowledge or skill in construction, the truth is that for most house renovations or other similarly challenging projects, a general contractor will save you time and money in the long run. Due to the high demand for professional contractors, it can be difficult to source the best person for the job. If you’re ditching the DIY for a job well done but have no clue what attributes a contractor should possess- you’re in the right place. Read on for a roundup of the top qualities to look for when hiring a general contractor.
In any construction or building position, past work and conduct are a strong indication of the potential quality of work and professionalism an individual will bring to a future job. This means that recommendations and testimonials are extremely valuable in the world of contractors. One of the top things to prioritize when looking for a general contractor is glowing reviews! If you personally know someone who has work done by a specific contractor, use that person as a resource. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about the experience, and check with the local chamber of commerce and better business bureau as well. A good reputation paves the way for good work and can give you the confidence you need to make a smart hiring decision.
When in doubt, shop local! A safe bet if you’re looking for a contractor is to hire locally. Someone who is familiar with the local trends, codes, and pricing is an obvious fit for hiring a contractor in a hurry. By selecting someone who is already involved in your community, the chances they are reliable and knowledgeable are much greater. Plus, by locally sourcing your team, you guarantee ease of contact. Travel times to the site in question will be short, and you’ll easily be able to make an in-person visit to their offices if needed. For convenience’s sake, this quality is a huge time saver.
Though it’s easy to think that all general contractors should have the same skills, that’s not necessarily true. In fact, though all of the basics should be more or less the same, most contractors will have one or two specialties. These will be the types of projects that they prefer and that they will typically have the most experience with. Companies that specialize in remodels, such as Bruce Gardner Co, will excel at increasing the value of a home and integrating seamlessly with the existing building style. Regardless of the type of project you are hiring specialized contractors for, they will generally give the best results. If you’re adamant that a contractor has an abundance of experience working in a niche area of building, feel free to ask for samples. Proof of completed work is a great way for potential contractors to display their style, experience, and overall craftsmanship.
When it comes to home renovation or construction, one of the most important attributes to consider is communication. By hiring someone to work on your house, you’re entrusting a huge personal asset to them and hoping they understand your needs. If a project is large enough, you will be in constant contact with this person for weeks, sometimes months, at a time. You’ll need to select someone who is easy to contact, trustworthy, and excels at listening and conceptualizing. This last quality is especially important, as even the best contractor won’t give you the result you’re looking for if they’re not on the same page. Hiring someone who will understand your vision, and be forthcoming about what it will take to get there, is the key to being satisfied with the look and price of the final product.
Selecting someone who is good at what they do might seem like an easy task, but unfortunately, that’s not always the case. Luckily, there are consistent markers of what makes an excellent general contractor. Some are obvious, and some will rely more on the type of job you want to be done. Either way, doing your due diligence before your hire will prevent frustrations and can save you a great deal of money. Hiring someone with a great reputation which is based locally, specializes in the type of project you require, and will communicate effectively will ensure that any renovation will be a smooth process rather than a nightmarish one. As long as you’ve vetted your selection properly, you can sleep easy knowing the job will be done right.