Remodeling your home is a task that requires a lot of planning, patience and some groundwork to be done on your part. The task is beyond just what you have planned and have designed on the blue print. A remodeling project can turn into a nightmare if you have the wrong contractor on the job. Undue delays, added costs and disappointments are often side effects of having a contractor who is not in sync with your expectations and plans for the remodeling project. Most of the times a home remodeling costs a huge investment, and hence you want to make sure that every penny spent is well worth. Since you are trusting someone else with your money, it is important that you have the right person, who will get you the best value for your money.
Here are some key steps that you should ideally abide by before you hire a contractor for your home remodeling project.
- Plan your requirements: It is your home and you will be living in it. While you may wonder where will the remodeling start from, it is not so difficult when you start planning from the basics. You are the best judge of your requirements ideally. You can custom your home remodeling needs to suit your requirements. There are a lot of home remodeling ideas you can get from various sources. So, planning would be the first step before you even look for home remodeling contractors. There would be certain things that you would like to do yourself. It is important you have that clarity as it would be a criteria for the contractor bids.
- Look for references and reviews: You don’t want to have a bad experience just like how your friend did with a particular contractor. These days online serves as an important tool to not just look for contractors offering the remodeling services, but also to gather reviews and experiences shared by other customers. Speak to your friends and neighbors and you may two or three names appearing as common. Put down these names on your shortlisted ones and make sure they are as per your requirements.
- Personally talk to the contractors: Do not fix up a contractor going by hearsay. It is important to meet them in person and talk to them. First meetings are important as they give you an idea about the temperament of the contractor to help you judge your comfort levels to work with them. During the interview stage it is important to have a clear discussion about the plans you have for the remodeling project. Give an idea about your budget to know if they are comfortable with the same or not. You don’t want surprises towards the end about this one for sure. It is also important to understand the team strength of the contractor.
- Ask the contractors for reference pictures of their work: It is always good to see visuals of the work that has been completed by the contractor. People have different standards of working. While good and bad work is extremely subjective, seeing the contractor’s work gives you an idea whether it is as per your standards. This is important to get a comfort into working with a new contractor.
- Check the licenses: It is important to ensure that the contractor you are working with is far from legal hassles and has a clean way of working. All states may not require licenses for generic contractors working on plumbing and electrical projects. Get an idea from the local building department on the permits and licenses that your contractor needs before breaking the ground. If the contractor has the licenses they will only be happy to show them to you. Certifications like lead safe are required for certain projects, as per the rules by environmental protection agency. Speak to your contractor about the same.
- Budget: Always finalize a budget for your remodeling project and make sure you discuss the same with the contractor. You want your contractor to recommend you home remodeling ideas that will be in your budget. Again, when the contractor is recommending you the materials he should keep the budget in mind before suggesting inputs.