A Qualified Contractor is Key
How to find one for your home and the many benefits
Finding a qualified contractor is the key to getting the work done well and in a timely fashion. When hiring a contractor, there are a few steps you can take to make sure you are getting the best company/individual for the job. Whether you are remodeling your home or fixing up a rental property, consider the importance of hiring a qualified contractor based on the following steps.
Steps to find a qualified contractor
Step 1- Do the research
When hiring a contractor to work on your home or rental property, make sure to take the time to do some research. Read reviews and testimonials to create a list of potential contractors in your area. If the company has negative reviews, make sure to read them and better understand the concerns of the client. Dig deeper to make sure the complaint is valid and use your best discretion to decide if that contract is a good fit. We all understand that it is easy for a past customer to pass judgement quickly and write a bad review BUT every bad review comes with some element of truth. Also be aware of companies that have no reviews. The rule of thumb is to go with a company that has several reviews where most of the reviews are positive.
Oak City Properties Helpful Hint: Think about asking friends, relatives, and co-workers if they have a recommendation or have worked with a contractor they trust.
Step 2- Contact the Individual/Company and ask for references
Yes, references! This may seem like a lot of work for a contractor, but it is important to ask for references from a former client(s) that can validate the individual’s work. A qualified contractor should be able to direct you to previous clients who are happy with their work and can vouch for their work. If they can not provide those references, there are bigger issues at play.
Step 3- Ask for Credentials and Certifications
We know this process is starting to sound like a job interview, but that is exactly the steps needed to screen a qualified contractor. When asking and seeking out credentials, the first place to look is on the company website. Look for items such as:
- -Required state and local licenses
- -Professional associations
- -Education and past experience
- -Required testing and qualifying tests
- -Fully licensed and insured
- -Better Business Bureau Records
If you are having trouble finding the necessary credentials and criteria, don’t be afraid to ask. If the company cannot provide the documents and proper information, think about moving down your list to the next choice.
Step 4- Meet with the Contractors
Once you have made the initial contact and have gathered all of the information you need. Consider meeting with 2-3 contractors to discuss your project (even if you have a favorite contender). When meeting with the contractors, have a list of questions ready and an idea of what work you want to be done on your home. Ask questions such as:
- -What are the payment terms?
- -How do they handle the work? Do they outsource any of the project elements?
- -Who will you be working with during the project? (project manager, owner, foreman?)
- -What is the timeframe to get the work done?
- -What happens if they run into a problem?
- -How do they communicate with their customers during the project?
- -Have they completed any projects in the past, similar to yours?
Step 5- Make your selection
In theory, you have researched, read reviews, contacted past customers, identified credentials, and met with the contractor. Great Job! Now, it is time to pick the best contractor for your project and budget. Make sure to pick someone you would like to work with on both a personal and professional level. The contractor needs to be a good fit for both you and the project.
Benefits of finding a qualified contractor
Finding a qualified contractor will help you in the long run. From a financial point of view, you want to make sure you are hiring a company that will do quality work at a fair price. From a personal point of view, you need to make sure the individual is the best fit for both the project and your needs. There are also other benefits to finding a qualified contractor such as:
- They have the necessary professional training to get the job done right
- They have a good reputation, credentials, and reviews to earn your trust and the trust of others
- They have processes in place (communication, project managers, billing terms, contracts) so that the project will run smoothly and efficiently
- They are insured and licensed so that concerns during a project are minimal
Want to read more helpful blogs about home maintenance and upkeep?
Take a look at the following blogs:
Need help selling, buying, or managing your rental home?
At Oak City Properties, we are a full-service property management company and provide services to help investors, homeowners, and landlords. With over 25 years of experience, we provide 5 Star Service for our clients, whether you are buying a home, selling a home, or in need of someone to manage a rental property. Want to learn more about what we do? Visit our website at http://oakcityproperties.com/ or call us at (919) 232-9222.