One of the biggest challenges of a home renovation is finding the right contractor. Getting the best one for your home—the true professional who shows up and delivers quality work on time and on budget—depends on doing some serious screening before the job starts, and this is one area where many homeowners fall short.
Here are seven simple tips to help you hire the right contractor for your project.
1. Get Recommendations. Talk with people you know and trust. Your real estate agent is a great resource, but also talk with family, friends, neighbours, and others who have undergone projects similar to yours.
Browse professional listings to find general contractors in your area. Check out their reviews and browse photos in their portfolios to see how their work lines up with the scope of your project. You can even message them to get a conversation going.
Are there recently completed or under-construction projects in your area? Ask the owners about their contractor and the working relationship they have with him or her.
2. Determine the contractor's specialty. Interview contractors who do the type of work you need. For example, if you want a renovation, you want a renovator, rather than a new-home builder. Look for someone who focuses on homes that are the same age and style as yours. While a contractor may have more than one specialty, you want to ensure that your renovation project aligns to a contractor’s experience and expertise.