Not all remodelers are alike, and unfortunately the remodeling industry has its fair share of shady characters. According to the Better Business Bureau, complaints against home improvement and home repair contractors are among the most common consumer complaints received. It’s not always the bad guys you need to watch out for. You need to be just as cautious of the clueless, honest guy as you would the scamming con artist.
Here are some red flag warnings you should look out for:
- High-pressure sales tactics
- “Mobile builders” with no land line
- A contractor who is unable to provide references
- Vague payment and contract terms
- A contractor who asks you to pull the necessary permits
- And doesn’t offer a warranty for his work
When selecting a remodeling company start by asking for recommendations.
Once you have a list of names, call each one to ask important licensing information, if they carry general liability/ workers comp insurance and if they warranty their work.
Narrow your list to 2 to 4 companies, meet each of them in person, and then request estimates. As you review the estimates, consider each remodelers experience, warranty, quality and accessibility.
Once you select a remodeler’s estimate, call him to request a written contract.
Read the written contract carefully. Ask questions about anything you don’t understand, and don’t hesitate to ask for changes to the contract if needed.
Carefully selecting the right remodeling company will help you feel at ease and lead to your satisfaction. Satisfied clients are many times more likely to return to their original remodeler for future projects, and to refer them to others. A professional remodeler takes pride in his work, is satisfied with a job well done, and sincerely wants you to be happy with your remodel. It’s not just good for business – a good remodeler knows it’s the right thing to do.