How Do I Hire A Contractor?

How Do I Hire A Contractor?
When building a new home, hiring a contractor is one of the most important steps in beginning the process. Your general contractor will work side by side with you to raise your dream house from the ground up. That is why finding and acquiring a contractor that is reputable, reliable, transparent, and licensed is of the utmost importance.

How Do I Find a Contractor To Hire?

The amount of information that comes up in a quick search online can be overwhelming. A good practice when seeking a contractor would be to turn to trusted friends or members of your community. Word-of-mouth references often yield successful contractor findings as you are able to hear firsthand the experiences of someone you trust.

Thumbtack is a comprehensive resource to search for a contractor online. You can find a general contractor or subcontractors for the various services needed for building a home.

How Do I Vet a Contractor?

Properly vetting and screening contractors is an essential part to hiring someone you trust to play an integral role in your home building process. Since building a home is a large undertaking and investment, you want to be sure that the team you assemble around it is rock-solid.

The best place to start is simply by picking up the phone and calling contractors you are interested in. Below are some questions to ask in the initial phone call:

  • How long have you been in business?
  • How many houses have you built and on average how many do you build a year?
  • Are you insured and licensed?
  • What is the project timeline?
  • How do you regularly communicate with customers? Do you provide regular updates via email/phone?
  • How will you protect the building site?
  • Asking to see suggestions (photos) of built projects

After you have narrowed down three final candidates, it is a good practice to set up a face-to-face meeting. Since you will be working with your contractor for an extended period of time, sitting down with them will give you a better feel as to if your working relationship will work in the long run.

Additionally, when meeting with your final candidates, you will want to obtain highly-detailed bids from each of them based on your blueprint. The bids should detail all material lists and labor costs. It is not uncommon for certain contractors to provide vague bids with general costs. It is highly recommended that you avoid this kind of contractor at all costs and seek to pursue a candidate with a very thorough bid.

Lastly, you will want to verify your final candidate’s credentials, licensures, and verify if there are any complaints against them. A good place to seek this information out is the Better Business Bureau.

How Do I Work With My Contractor Once Hired?

Before beginning the build process, you will want to be sure that every detail of the process is in writing. Having a well-formed paper trail benefits both you and your contractor.
If something needs to be changed during the build process, request the contractor provide you with change orders in writing. This can specify the description of the change and the fixed price.

Open and honest communication is the foundation of a successful contractor-client relationship. As the homeowner, you will want to diligently watch your build site as things progress. That way, you can identify problems as they arise and communicate them with your contractor before the project gets too far along. Having the contractor’s number and permission to contact them at any time is key for clear communication.

Contact FRANK today to discuss plans for your dream home. With a solid, accurate, and structurally sound FRANK blueprint in hand, reputable contractors will be eager to take on your home building project.

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