What are some steps for choosing the best remodeling contractor?
A remodeling project is one of the most invigorating lifestyle changes a homeowner can make. However, trusting a contractor with both your home and your money can feel overwhelming. Below are some steps to follow for selecting the best remodeling contractor:
1. Decide what you want out of your newly remodeled home. Start thinking about goals, amenities and a rough timeline, making sure you can clearly articulate your ideas to a contractor. This phase is also ideal for researching sustainable building products. By using green products, homeowners save money on heating and cooling costs, and builders can decrease construction’s carbon footprint.
2. Ask for advice. You’re not the first person to remodel your home, so don’t go through the process alone. Talk to friends, relatives, neighbors and coworkers about their remodeling experiences. In addition to collecting referrals, ask targeted questions about how those contractors communicated throughout the process and mitigated any setbacks. If you know a building inspector, ask which contractors regularly meet code requirements.
3. Research and contact businesses. Start gathering information on your referrals and local prospects by visiting their websites or making phone calls. Make sure these remodeling contractors have the required licenses, liability insurance and ability to obtain local permits for your project.
4. Set up meetings. Schedule face-to-face meetings, ask questions and make sure communication is fluid and straight-forward. How many projects does the contractor handle at one time? Are his or her past projects similar in scope to yours?
5. Ask for references. Think of this step as putting the finishing touches on your selection process. When contacting references, ask them to rate their satisfaction with the project. Did the contractor meet time and budget requirements? The best contractor is not always the cheapest. Make sure the contractor you’re considering uses long-lasting products that will stand the test of time.
6. Choose your contractor and sign a contract. With all of your research on hand, select the best contractor for you and for your project. After confirming with the contractor, sign a contract that includes a description of the work, products to be used, cost and completion dates and let the project begin.