How to Find a Reliable Contractor for Home Improvements and Repairs

How to Find a Reliable Contractor for Home Improvements and Repairs

If you have a home improvement project on deck, a reliable contractor is essential unless you go the do-it-yourself route. Since not all contractors are created equal, and countless professionals claim they do a good job, finding the right contractor can be challenging.

Before you move forward with a home improvement loan and get your project started, follow these steps to find a reliable contractor.

Use reputable sources

There’s a good chance your friends and family have used contractors for various home improvement projects in the past. Don’t be afraid to ask them about their experiences with various professionals. You can also check out reputable online sources and social media outlets to read customer reviews.

Interview multiple contractors

Interviewing several contractors is time-consuming, but doing so is important. An interview will give you a sense of each professional’s personality and strengths. You’ll find that each contractor will likely have their own timeline, approach, and expertise. Multiple interviews will make narrowing down your choices and finding the right one easier.

Ask for references

If you find a few contractors that pique your interest, ask them for references from previous customers. Call or email each reference and get the scoop about their experience. Most people will answer your questions honestly, and those conversations may ease some of your confusion or concerns.

Check licenses

The most reputable contractors are the ones who have the appropriate training and licenses. You can usually check a prospective contractor’s license online on your state’s official website. You’ll likely need to enter their name or business name. Be cautious about working with unlicensed professionals, as they may lack the skills to leave you with the great results you deserve.

Ask about subcontractors

While some contractors have their own team of professionals, others subcontract all or most of their work. Make sure you ask your contractor who will be completing their work. Remember that subcontracting plumbing or electrical is completely normal, but too many subcontractors could lead to issues with quality.

Get a formal estimate.

Don’t agree to use a contractor until you see an estimate of the project’s cost. Asking for bids from every professional you interview can make it easier to compare the options and decide. Remember that the contractor who quotes you the cheapest price isn’t always the best.

Discuss payments

Once you decide on a contractor, it’s time to talk about how you’ll pay for the project. It’s typical for contractors to request a percentage of the total project cost upfront before they begin. They’ll collect the remaining balance when they complete the work. It’s also important to discuss the form of payment you’ll be using to complete the project and the payment frequency.

The Bottom Line

The contractor you choose can make or break your home improvement project. That’s why it’s important to do your research and shop around. Best of luck in your search for the perfect professional.