When it’s time to hire a contractor, either because of storm damage or the age of your home or business, finding the best contractor for your project can be intimidating. Here are six steps for narrowing your search and picking the best:
1. Make a List
The first step is to ask friends and family for recommendations for a qualified contractor. One easy way to do this is to write a Facebook post asking your friend list or any local online groups for suggestions. You will be surprised how quickly the recommendations – with contact information – will pour in.
2. Background Check
Check with your Better Business Bureau for complaints. While a few resolved disputes can be expected, large numbers of complaints are a red flag. Save yourself time and headaches by crossing those businesses off your list.
Narrow your list further by calling your contractors. First impressions count so check out how they answer the phone and how quickly they get back to you after leaving a message. This speaks volumes and will be the standard during the project. Ask if they handle projects of your size, if they can provide a list of financial references and previous clients, and how many projects they have going at a given time. A good contractor will be ready for these questions and should be able to answer them without hesitation.
4. Meet For Estimates
Your list should be down to a handful, so now is the time to meet for estimates. Each contractor should be able to answer your questions and provide a list of references. Also see how the face-to-face interaction feels. You will be spending a moderate amount of time with this company, so make sure you feel comfortable.
5. Call References
Check references by phone and ask how these projects went. You can even ask to see the projects. When customers are thrilled, they will want to show off their finished project.
Your list should be down to just two or three contractors. Price might be the biggest factor at this point, but make sure you throw out any low-ball bid. This contractor might be cutting corners. The bottom line is choosing who you feel comfortable with and who you are confident can do the best job.