Top Things to Look for When Hiring a Contractor

Whether you are renovating your home or starting a new construction project, a lot goes into creating a successful outcome. Some homeowners tackle a DIY project only to find that it’s much more complicated and stressful than they imagined.

Instead of spending your evenings and weekends working on these home improvement projects, bringing in an expert contractor for assistance is worth the investment. Not only will a contractor complete the project on a faster timeline, but you can also expect higher-quality results when an expert is on the job.

Before you pick a contractor, it’s critical that you do a little bit of homework to ensure you are hiring at the right time. Follow these tips to learn more about the local contractors and available services.

Tip #1: Be Clear About What You Want

When you know what you want to achieve, then it’s easier to hire a contractor that is a good fit for the job

When you know what you want to achieve, then it’s easier to hire a contractor that is a good fit for the job. Identify a few goals and write down what you want to achieve so you can communicate these details to the contractor during your consultation.

If you don’t know your goals or how to accomplish the project, it might be helpful to start by hiring a design consultant. Once these plans are in place, you will have more clarity about the contractors that will be needed to complete the job.

Tip #2: Shop Around

Don’t hire the first contractor you find online. Instead, it’s wise to get a few estimates from different contractors. Research at least 3 contractors in the area, then reach out to these providers to schedule consultations with each of them. Some homeowners will even reach out to 5 or 6 contractors, so they have more options to choose from.

You can compare each contractor’s reputation, as well as the services they offer. Ask questions about the team and timeline. Gather as much information as possible and request an estimate for the project.

Each estimate should have a breakdown of the project, including details about materials costs, labor costs, and more. Make sure you understand the scope of work and identify any gaps that might result in add-on costs down the road. 

Remember that the lowest price isn’t always the best. Some homeowners find that “you get what you pay for.” A low-cost rate might result in lower-quality service. A high bid could be priced correctly because you receive higher quality services for the cost.

Tip #3: Ask About Work History and Experience

When investing in a big home improvement project, you want to ensure that the contractor has experience with the type of work you need. 

Keep in mind that there are differences in the contractors that you hire. Some contractors are generalists, meaning they might outsource different parts of the project. Other contractors are specialists, so they likely have more extensive experience with the specific services you need.

You want the best results, so hiring a team with years of industry experience makes sense. This hands-on experience, combined with industry certifications, results in the best results when they are on the job.

Tip #4: Contractor Professionalism and Personality

Depending on the job size, you will spend a lot of time in contact with the contractor. Make sure it is a good personality fit. You must be sure you get along with the provider and their team.

Also, consider their professionalism in the early stages of the conversation. When discussing the project and getting an estimate for the work, the level of communication can indicate what you can expect when the project is underway. 

  • Does the contractor respond to calls and messages in a timely manner? 
  • Do they show up for appointments on time? 
  • Is the team dressed professionally?
  • Are they driving company vehicles that are well-maintained?

These small details provide insight into the team’s commitment and dedication to the quality of work they provide to each client.

Tip #5: Ask for Recommendations

a Google search can be a great way to find contractors in the local areaWhen starting from scratch, a Google search can be a great way to find contractors in the local area. But it’s hard to pick from available options if you don’t have any background information about the providers.

One option is to ask friends and family for recommendations. When you know someone who has worked with the contractor in the past, you can get insights about the level of care you can expect for your project.

If you have already picked a contractor or are ready to hire, another option is to ask for reviews about this specific company. You can find online reviews on Google and on social media platforms. These messages from previous customers can shed light on the overall experience and quality of care the contractor has delivered in the past.

It can also be smart to check the Better Business Bureau to see how the contractor rates. This resource is an excellent place to look if you are wondering whether the contractor has a history of disputes with other clients or contractors.

Tip #6: Schedule an In-Person Consultation

Initially, it can be beneficial to have a phone conversation so you can determine whether it’s worth your time to schedule an in-person meeting. During the phone call, ask questions about the contractor and their services to see if it’s a good fit for what you need.

Based on the phone interview, schedule a time to meet in person for further discussion and an estimate for the project. The contractor will need to see your home or the location where the project will be completed. Additionally, this in-person meeting allows the contractor to see your blueprints or other information about the project.

Consider your communication styles and how well you get along during the consultation. 

Call for a Consultation with a Reputable Contractor

Are you looking for a local contractor who can help with your projects in Southeast Wisconsin? Better View Home Improvements is here to help! Contact us when you are ready to schedule a consultation at your convenience: (262) 415-7011.