You probably dream about your ideal home now and then, like a lot of people do. You’ve most likely got all the details worked out, from how you’ll landscape your garden to what light fixtures you’ll install on your bathrooms. So it’d be quite a shame and disappointment if none of those details made its way into the actual house.
The contractor is the person that’s supposed to take your vision and make it a reality. That’s why you’ve got to make sure the one you hire is experienced, skilled and reliable. You also need to be able to communicate effectively with him/her. Otherwise, quite a few things might get lost in translation and you won’t end up with your dream home.
If you’ve never hired a contractor before, don’t worry. We’ve compiled some tips that’ll help you find the perfect professional to bring your dream to life.
Ask For Recommendations
If you know a few people who’ve built their own homes in the North Shore area, then the first thing you can do is ask whether they can vouch for the contractors they’ve hired. If they give glowing reviews about their experience with a particular professional, then go ahead and add that person to the list of potential candidates. Soon, you’ll have a few good leads to check out.
You might also want to ask a few building inspectors in your area. Building inspectors are constantly in touch with builders and will most likely give you some good recommendations.
Even if a contractor comes highly recommended, you’d still want to interview them personally. This way you can confirm whether they’re the right pick for your particular project. You can conduct interviews over the phone but we think it’s better to meet them face-to-face.
Here are a couple of questions that you may want ask potential candidates:
- How long have you been doing this?
- Have you taken on similar projects before?
- Can you provide a list of your previous clients?
- How many other projects have you taken on at the moment?
Follow Up On References
If a potential contractor has given you a list of their previous clients, we highly recommend that you call them. Ask them about their own experiences with the contractor: were they easy to work with, did they get things done on time, did they do a satisfactory job…etc. If you can, perhaps arrange for you to go visit one of these houses so you can determine the contractor’s skill level for yourself.
One thing you don’t want to do is overpay. Hence we recommend that you request quotations from as many professionals as you can so that you can deduce what can be considered a fair price.
The best way to prevent yourself from being taken advantage of is to draw up a thorough contract. You may want to specify:
- The total cost and how the payments are going to be made.
- Start and completion dates
- List of materials to be used
- The responsibilities and obligations of each party
- A requirement to obtain a lien release…etc.
You need to hire the right contractor if you want to build your dream home exactly as you envision it. By following our five tips, you’ll be able to do just that.