Choosing a contractor for your home renovation project is an important step and a great choice. The client-contractor relationship is an important one, and you have the power to start it off on the right foot. If this is the first time you will be working with a contractor, or if you’re looking for ways to improve the experience, take the following tips into consideration. Whether you’re considering installing solar, replacing windows, repairing your roof or getting a new HVAC, these tips will ensure a smooth process for everyone involved!
Be Clear With Expectations
Be as clear as you can with your contractor and make sure you’re on the same page. It will be very helpful to have a good idea of what your budget is ahead of time and what timeline you’re looking for and then make sure that the budget and timeline are feasible when talking the project over with the contractor. Communicate your goals for the project and any concerns you have early on and the whole process will go a lot smoother and get you to the ‘complete’ phase much faster!
Be Prepared and Well-Researched for your Interview
Prepare your questions before the appointment so you can give a thorough interview at the same time that they come to gather information for the estimate. Get to know your Pro to ensure you feel confident working with him or her. Here are some essential questions to ask to get you started! It may also be beneficial to put together a collection of pictures and ideas that will give the potential contractor an idea of what your end goal is!
Be Available for the Estimate
When a contractor prepares an estimate for you, they spend time calculating the number of workers your contractor will need to hire, the cost of materials, and the project’s timeline. Being available to hear their estimate is an easy way to ensure your relationship starts well. While they may give you a ballpark estimate on site, they generally will crunch numbers off site and get back to you with a final estimate. Answer that call and ask any questions that have come up for you along the way. It’s important to write down each of the estimates you receive. Use this worksheet as a way to stay organized and compare each estimate you receive.
Be Punctual to Appointments
Just as you want your contractors to arrive on time, they hope for the same with their clients. Contractors’ time is valuable, as is your own. Being on time shows respect and facilitates your project being completed on time.
Prepare Your Home
Depending on your project, you may need to clear the room before the appointment. Your contractor will appreciate that you took that initiative, freeing their time to focus on putting together an accurate estimate for the project instead of moving fragile items out of harm’s way.
Trusting your contractor is the foundation for a good client-contractor relationship and will benefit you in the long run if you decide to hire them. After you have checked their reviews and confirmed their certifications, trust that they know what they are doing and take a step back. Showing you have faith and giving them space to survey the area will help them put together the most accurate estimate.
Of course, be sure to ask questions if anything is confusing to you during the process. This will also give you a feel for their communication skills when it comes to the work they will be doing.