For residential homeowners, there are certain things you should hear about the contractor that you’re thinking about hiring to build your new carport, shed or garage. There are so many fly-by-night contractors who simply take the money and run or don’t finish the job. The most important aspect of hiring any building contractor is to make sure their legit, but there are also some other things you should hear about them too before you sign the contract.
So, How Do You Look For Advice?
If you happen to see a neighbor who just had a garage or structure built on their property, you can ask them who they used, but you can also ask them if they ever heard of the contractor you’re thinking about? This is a great way to strike up a conversation and discover some valuable information. Your workplace can also be an excellent place to ask some questions to see if one of your coworkers has any advice on a certain contractor.
Additionally, when you’re out and about or in places like your local hardware store, you should throw the contractors name out there and see if anyone has heard of them? If they’re a trustworthy contractor with local community ties, you should hear a myriad of valuable information that can help you make your decision on whether to hire them or not.
According to the experts at Steeline Garages in Lismore, over 30 percent of building contractors do not have insurance, worker’s compensation, valid state license, and other criteria that qualify them as a professional contractor or business.
Do They Have Insurance?
This is an area that requires paying close attention to because a building contractor without insurance can cause all kinds of problems. From personal injury lawsuits to property damage, material theft, and fire, the risks fall solely on the homeowner for anything that happens during the project if the contractor is uninsured.
It’s always a good idea to physically call the insurance provider to make sure it’s an active policy because some contractors are pretty good at manipulating an expired insurance policy by utilizing white-out and new ink with current dates and numbers.
They Only Ask For a Minimal Down Payment
When a building contractor only asks for a minimum down payment? This is a good sign that they’re a trustworthy business. Sadly, there are some contractors who ask for ridiculous amounts upfront like for 50 percent or more for the job. They usually have an ulterior motive, and this is usually a red flag.
Excessive down payments should be scrutinized. In the world of residential construction, a standard contract should read about 1/3rd down, 1/3rd due at midway, and the final 1/3rd due upon completion, which includes both materials and labor.
They Show Up and Finish On Time
When you hear that a building contractor shows up and completes the job on time within budget, this is some good advice and sign of a reputable business. A building contractor who is tardy day after day not only adds irritation and inconvenience to the project, but it’s also a sign of things to come.
There’s also a good chance that your project won’t be completed in time or if it is? The quality of work will suffer due to the contractor who’s rushing to finish it in time. Contractors like Steeline Garages who show up on time and provide quality work are a prime example of what you should be hearing when you’re looking for advice.
Do They Offer a Warranty?
Believe it or not, fly-by-night contractors do not offer warranties, and if they do? It’s all smoke and mirrors to get the job and money. It’s important to note, not all fly-by-night contractors simply take the money and run. As a matter of fact, there are some who will do a good job; however, when repairs or products fail, all you get is their voicemail with no return call. They don’t offer valid warranties.
Building a garage, shed or carport is an investment, and you certainly don’t expect it to last forever, but if the material fails within the first five years, you want a contractor who offers warranties on material and labor while fixing it for free. The amounts and limits can vary for both, and they should be outlined in your contract.
When you hear things such as how the contractor offers both material and labor warranties with their services? That’s the kind of advice you want to hear.
Is The Crew Friendly and Respectful?
Having a work crew on your property means there will be some social interactions between the workers and yourself or your family, so it’s very important to have a friendly and respectful crew at your residence during your project. When you get advice about a trustworthy contractor who has respectful and courteous workers, this is a good sign that you can trust them on your property and inside your home.
It’s also important to hire a contractor who respects your landscape and takes measures to protect it. It’s not uncommon for a lot of homeowners to become good friends with some of the contractors they come across and use them extensively for future home improvement projects. A friendly and respectful contractor is key and solid advice.
Is There Any More Advice?
One of the biggest mistakes that homeowners make is not checking the contractor’s references, licenses, and insurance. Most reputable building contractors should be able to furnish at least three references on demand if not more as well as provide real-working phone numbers that can be verified to previous customers and insurance companies.
Not calling references and checking other credentials can be a costly mistake. It only takes a few minutes to verify the numbers and talk to the reference. If you get three to four positive calls in a row,their credentials check out, and they meet the above criteria? That’s the best advice you’re going to hear about professional carports, sheds, and garage builders.