A HomePro Match Guide
Major renovation projects can be stressful, but finding the right contractor can ease a lot of the pressure. Whether you are repairing, revamping, or adding to a space in your home, the perfect contractor will work within your needs, timeline, and budget to deliver your desired results.
At HomePro Match, we specialize in connecting homeowners with contractors. Part of this means equipping homeowners with the right tools to make the most informed decisions. Read on to learn more about what to look for in a contractor, which questions to ask, and any red flags to keep an eye on.
5 Steps to Finding the Right Contractor for Your Home Project
- Create your project.
- Identify your needs and expectations for the timeline and budget of your project. The better you can answer these questions, the easier it will be to find the right match.
- Do your research.
- This one's important since you're trusting someone to enter your home. Once you've narrowed down your search to a few options, start digging into reviews, testimonials, previous work, online presence, and any other information you can find.
- Be mindful of response time.
- Pay attention to how a contractor behaves in your early interactions, as this will be the framework for communication throughout your entire project.
- Compare multiple bids or estimates.
- Remember that the lowest price may not always be the best choice. Factor in what you learned during the research stage, and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
- Get the quote in writing.
- You’ll need a written record of the materials, budget, and timeline that your contractor is proposing. Without a contract, you may not be protected against changes to these terms.
Four Questions to Ask a Contractor
HomePro Match is here to equip homeowners with the tools they need to make informed decisions, including the right questions to ask potential contractors.
Each of the questions listed below will help shape the professional relationship, so don’t be shy when you’re searching for answers. These answers, along with your research from phase one, will be critical factors in your decision-making process.
- Is your company insured?
- Verify your contractor’s insurance and workers’ compensation. This is also a good time to check in on your own homeowner’s insurance so you know exactly what it covers.
- Are you in good standing with the trade associations and BBB?
- These relationships are important when it comes to selecting a contractor. You can verify memberships on the BBB website or any trade association’s website.
- What is your record/complaint resolution?
- Complaints happen and so should speedy resolution. If the contractor has unresolved complaints, take these into consideration.
- Do you provide lien waivers when working with subcontractors?
- If your contractor does not pay their subcontractors, it may cause an issue down the road. Make sure that your contractor provides lien waivers and be sure to get them before you make your final payment.
Contractor Red Flags
Today more than ever, it’s crucial for homeowners to pay attention to red flags. If something a contractor does or says doesn’t sit right, trust your instincts. HomePro Match has outlined some warning signs to be aware of, like if your contractor is:
- Pressuring you to sign.
- If you feel pressured to make a decision, it may be a warning that a contractor will be difficult to work with. You shouldn’t feel uncomfortable, rushed, or ignored at any point during the planning stages.
- Wants to skip the permitting stage:
- Permits, just like contracts, are key. If a contractor wants to skip permits or start work without them, beware.
- Tries to use leftover materials:
- Materials can be expensive but if a contractor wants to use leftover materials, it’s a sign that they may cut more than just costs. Your contract should outline the costs of all new materials and labor.
- Asks for all of the money upfront:
- Standard contracts ask for 10% upfront. The remaining payments will be paid on a schedule drawn up in the contract. A contractor asking for more than that may be trying to front-load the contract. Don’t make any final payments until you’ve cleared all work and gotten all lien waivers.
We hope this helps you feel more prepared to select the perfect contractor for your home project. Feel free to download and print our info-graphic for a hand-held reminder of what you should be looking for, what questions you should be asking, and any red flags to be aware of in your process.