When planning a project to upgrade your home or yard many factors are involved. Deciding on a design, figuring out what materials to use, where to purchase materials, how to install the materials, and how much you can do while staying within your budget, can be overwhelming for many homeowners. Hiring a contractor to complete the project can alleviate much of the stress involved. Contractors will not only provide the physical labor but can also assist in the design process, acquire the necessary materials for your project, and give you the best results while staying within your budget.
One of the biggest decisions you will make during your home improvement project is which contractor to choose. You can find home improvement contractors through the Internet, from friends or family, or by recommendation from a sales associate at one of the six convenient RCP Block and Brick retail locations. Before you give someone your money and let him or her into your home you want to make sure it is someone you can trust...
It is important to vet any contractor you may be looking to hire. We suggest contacting and considering the bids from at least 3 different contractors. Below are some common steps you can take in making sure you find the right contractor for your job.
Before you pull the trigger and sign a contract for work with a particular contractor, make sure you have done your due diligence and contacted and compared the bids from at LEAST three different contractors. Make sure you understand the scope of exactly what each bid covers. Does it cover demolition and hauling? What are they charging for the new materials? What are they charging for the labor? Make sure you are comparing apples to apples.
While there are contractors who do great work at affordable prices, be wary of significantly lower bids. Unless there is an obvious valid reason, like it is a smaller crew who will take longer to complete the project; it could also be a sign that, in an effort to save money, a contractor may be planning on skipping or not fully completing proper building steps (e.g. Not excavating enough soil before laying pavers; not backfilling a wall with enough gravel; not installing proper geo-stabilization materials on a retaining wall; etc.)
On the other hand, you may come across bids that are on the higher side. While there are many amazing contractors who are absolutely worth a higher price, keep your eye on bids that are significantly higher than the others. These could be an indication that the contractor is extremely busy and simply inflating the price to what they consider fair to take on another project , or they are simply overcharging. Get an explanation of costs.
Another thing to consider when hiring a contractor is the existence of sub-contractors. If the contractor you are hiring is planning on sub-contracting the job out to another company, be sure you check the California state contractor license and insurance status of any sub-contractor on the job-site, who many not be operating under the license of the contractor you are hiring. This is a very common practice common and in no way is a sign of a bad contractor.
Finally, when signing a contract with the contractor of your choice, make sure that it includes all the things agreed to by both you and the contractor. Home improvement projects can be exciting, worthwhile, and have the ability to increase the value of your home. Picking the right contractor ensures that your project runs smoothly and is completed correctly. Following these tips you can ensure a job well done and avoid costly repairs down the road.