On the search for a qualified home renovation company? With dozens to choose from it can be hard to know where to begin. Use these red flags as guidelines for what to avoid as you begin your search.
1. No physical office
There is a lot of paperwork that goes along with being in the home renovation business, if you’re doing your job well, that is. With permits to file and invoices to process, most qualified and experienced contractors will have a physical office where the administrative and bookkeeping work gets done. Be suspicious of a home renovation company that doesn’t have a physical office.
2. No written guarantees
This is a non-negotiable. Never under any circumstance should you do business with a contractor who does not use written contracts and formal guarantees. Not only is it a sign of inexperience and lack of professionalism, but without a written contract there’s no way to know who will be held accountable if something goes wrong with your renovation. Never put down money or let work get underway without a written contract that you’ve read carefully and has been signed by both parties.
3. Lack of experience
Sure, hiring a contractor for his first job is sure to get you a great rate, but at the end of the day is it worth it? Hiring an inexperienced contractor may save you money in the short run, but will likely cost more over time when things need to be redone. Always find out how much relevant experience a contractor has before signing on the dotted line. The word “relevant” is important here. Building an outdoor deck and gutting a bathroom are two entirely different jobs that don’t require all the same knowledge or skills.
4. No client reviews
Most all contractors these days can be found online, and the reputable ones have customer reviews and client testimonials. If this isn’t the case, consider it a red flag, but ask for references as an alternative. Whatever you do, don’t start business with a contractor unless you’ve taken the time to find out what former clients have to say.
5. Poor communication
Communication is invaluable when it comes to working with a home renovation company. Consider it a bad sign if it takes more than a day or two for someone to return your initial request for a quote. The most professional companies will have an office staff that takes care of customer communication even when contractors are swamped with work.
Finding a Qualified Home Renovation Company
As with most services, your best bet in finding a qualified and reliable home renovation company is through the personal recommendation of someone you trust. If you’re in the market for home renovations, ask around with friends and family who have recently had work done to their homes. If this doesn’t turn up any prospects you are excited about, check out online reviews. In this day and age, any respectable contracting company will have online reviews that are easily accessible.
It’s in your best interest not to rush into hiring a contractor. The right one is out there, and it’s worth taking the time to find it.