It is crucial that the contractor is reputable and can prove to you that he will honor the promises he is making to you up front.
Client’s Three Biggest Fears
Michael C. Stone (2007)
- Will they do the job I want them to do?
- Will they do the job at a fair price?
- Will they do the job in a timely manner?
When interviewing a contractor, ask: Does the contractor…
- Oﬀer at least a 1 year written warranty?
- Respond to warranty calls immediately? What is the process for doing so?
- Have a guaranteed price using a fi xed–amount contract. Is this a 1-2 page agreement or a thorough detailed contract covering what is included, and more impor-tantly, what is NOT included in the project?
- Provide an upfront production schedule at contract signing so that you know what will happen each day throughout the duration of your project?
- Have written agreements with employees and trade contractors to ensure performance?
- Institute a Pre–Contract Meeting for each project to ensure that everyone that is involved in the production phase of the project is familiar with the details, consequently eliminating “surprises” and possible change orders?
- Have a list of outstanding references that you may contact on your own?
- Acquire permits and use licensed trade and mechanical contractors (e.g. Plumber, electrician)
- Have a license and certified staﬀ for performing RRP Lead renovation required by the EPA on all homes 1978 and older?
- Practice clear communication in a timely manner consistent with today’s technology?
- Have a license and bond as required in your city?
- Have written testimonials from past clients?
- Show clear and well–done photos of past projects?
- Possess at least 1 million dollars in liability insurance coverage and require that all trade contractors possess the same, in addition to their own workman’s compensation?
- Have a clean reputation on the internet? (i.e. Google the company name)
- Oﬀer unique and attractive designs?
- Have a detailed systems/processes to carry you through the sales–to–design–to–production phases of a project?
- Have an idea of how long the project will take to complete, and also how long the design and planning phases will take?
- Have a bid that is extremely low? Why?
- Seem trustworthy and reliable? Does he or she put you at ease?
- Communicate well with you, including listening?
- Have a plan for how he or she will respect your home and your family?
- Have their oﬃce located near you? The further away a contractor is the harder it is to properly service you and give you the attention you deserve.