With any serious home renovation project, there’s only so far that DIY efforts can take you. At some point, you’re going to need to hire a specialist contractor, be it to rewire the electrics, fit the plumbing or repair the roof. But choosing the right firm to take on the job can be daunting. Choose wrongly, and you could be in for a nightmare of shoddy work, unexpected delays, and legal issues. Choosing a trustworthy firm or tradesman who will complete the work to your specifications, timescales, and budget will save you a lot of stress and money. Here’s how to find a professional who will enhance your project:
Listen to Your Instincts
Okay, so you aren’t an expert in the field that your potential contractor operates in. But from meeting someone, you can get an impression from their behavior and the questions they ask, as to whether you can trust them. The amount of faith you’ll be putting in this individual is huge – they will be working in your home, potentially around your family, often unsupervised.
They will be making costly and major alterations to the fabric of your home. And you will be relying on them to be honest, translating their technical knowledge of any issues into terms that you can understand. So if a contractor tingles your ‘Spidey-sense’, it’s okay to walk away. Often non-verbal cues can give us more of a picture of a person that our logical minds understand – and far better to walk away now than risk something going wrong.
Pick A Project Specialist
It’s a good idea to choose a firm or individual with a track record of experience in a specific area that your job occupies. It may be quite a niche problem, and it will help if they have already tackled similar work in the past. Don’t be afraid to ask for examples, or even to see examples of previous jobs they have done to get an idea of the quality of the finish.
It’s also a great idea to make sure that if any specialist equipment is required – from a pile driver for underpinning foundations to a gas flow meter – they have ready access to or know the best place to get hold of. A good remodeler will know how to anticipate the requirements and potential problems with any job – and that only comes through relevant experience and specialist training.
Put A Strong Contract in Place
Before any work can begin, make sure you have outlined and agreed on a detailed contract, specifying what needs to be delivered. It should cover costs, the specifications of materials required, approximate start and finish dates for the work and a complete set of plans with written details.
Don’t leave a big margin for error – there can never be too much detail when it comes to a contract. The contract spells everything out for both of you and sets expectations on both sides. If something should go wrong, it also gives you a solid basis with little wiggle room. Any decent contractor will welcome the clarity this gives.