Residential Contractor Series – Initial Contact

Oct 12, 2009

So you have made the big decision to have a home improvement project done on your home and have narrowed your contractor search down to one or two. Now you are wondering ‘What can I expect from this process? What steps are involved and how do I know if everything is going correctly?”

When you initially contact a contractor they will want to do an in-home consultation to survey your project. This process will take at least an hour, depending on the size of the job and how many things they will need to evaluate. It is very helpful, if not necessary that all homeowners be present during this time so decisions can be made quickly and collectively. Otherwise, not having all parties there can delay your project and could cause problems down the road with miscommunications.

How do you know you are dealing with a company that is professional enough to earn your business and complete the project to your satisfaction? Once you have narrowed your search take the time to really review the work they have done in the past. Call the references and ask if they completed the project on the timeline stated. Ask if the estimate matched the final price, and if not, why. Ask if they have called the contractor for warranty work and how they handled the call. Ask if they cleaned up their work daily, and how the area looked when they left after the completion of the project. If the reference allows it, closely inspect the work. Is it the quality you would expect for your home? Diligence may take a little time but may save thousands of dollars later in time.

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Tabitha Bundenthal
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Cheryl Raine
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