Fall doesn’t just mean a new look for you, it can also mean you want a new look for your Connecticut home! Often times the most difficult part about starting a home improvement project is finding the right contractor for the job. You have to find someone that shares your vision, at the right price, and then you have to make sure you feel comfortable welcoming them into your home! Make sure you do your research before hiring a contractor, asking friends and family can be the best way to make sure you’re making the right choice. No recommendation for a good contractor in your area? Yahoo has some red flags you should watch out for when choosing a contractor.
- No references: If your contractor can’t provide you with references the only excuse would be that they are a new company with not a lot of work under their belt. Other than that, it usually means exactly what you think: none of their clients are willing to recommend them.
- No listed address: While this may just mean that your contractor is working from home, it’s a good idea to do some research or ask them directly if you cannot find an address. If a contractor doesn’t want to disclose his address he may be trying to stay under the radar a bit too much which may make you question his legitimacy.
- No permits: So your contractor is telling you he won’t need any permits to build, repair, or remodel. Maybe that’s the case with a small job or maybe that means there isn’t a professional tradesman on the job. Permits help make sure everything is of code and can better ensure your home insurance coverage. How so? If you don’t have a permit and damage occurs to the newly re-done area, your insurance may refuse to cover it.
- They show up at your doorstep: While it seems like that would be a dream come true if you’re looking to have work done, it’s not recommended. Many believe this means they are looking for work (why don’t they have jobs lined up thanks to recommendations?) and they are looking for a quick job with quick cash. It’s important to remember this isn’t always true; some companies do this to meet local community members face to face and get their name out there.
- No Insurance: Someone slips on the job and hurts themselves and you have to pay. There’s one way to avoid this from happening, make sure your contractor has business insurance. Ask your contractor to have their insurance agency send you something directly, proving they have insurance.
- Full Payment Up Front Requested: Does it sound right that you would pay for something before it was finished? We don’t think so either go with your gut on this one. While up-front costs may vary, most companies will use a payment in thirds option (some up front, some during, and some paid after).
- No Written Contract: The proposal or contract is crucial to making sure you and the contractor are on the same page. It allows him to detail the job and let you know the terms and conditions up front. Make sure all items needed and labor are included, that way if anything is added you will have to sign off on it.
Overwhelmed? Let’s call it prepared! It’s important for your contractor to meet the standards necessary for you to trust the company and the work that will be done on your home. Before any project evaluate not just the price they are giving you, but recommendations and the practices they use. It may also be a good idea to talk with your agent about your Connecticut Homeowners Insurance so that you know what kind of coverage you have and how the addition/renovation could affect your policy. Call your agent if you have questions!-->