When selecting a contractor for your next Home Improvement project, there are many things you should keep in mind before making your decision.
You’re finally ready to get that brand new kitchen or to build that bedroom addition. This is something that you have been thinking about and planning for a long time. There are usually many contractors to choose from, all with varying degrees of ability and history. The first step is to find a contractor that fits the project you are doing. There are always “specialists” that claim to be the best Kitchen Remodeler or the Bathroom Professional, but talking to contractors gives you much more insight on what their abilities are and projects that they have done in the past.
You’ve started making calls and asking for quotes. Now that you have called the contractor, did someone answer the phone? If you left a message, did they call you back or did you have to call multiple times? There are many stories that I hear where customers call the contractor numerous times, but never hear back. Others finally get a contractor to take a look at the project, but never receive an estimate for the work. Some people say, “Well, that is just how contractors are.” Not true. Business 101 is important no matter what field you are in. Customer service starts at the first phone call. If you are not taken care of on day one, how do you think the rest of the relationship will go as the project is underway?
It is important to get at least three estimates for the project you are looking to have done. Although you will hopefully get three different prices, the main reason for getting three estimates is to get to know three different contractors, how they approach customer service and the project at hand. This is also a great time to get ideas for the project where you can implement various ideas into the final project layout. Of course you have your vision of the final product, but professional contractors have seen many variations of remodeling projects, so it is important to keep an open mind.
At this point, you have all of your estimates in hand. I never recommend going with the lowest price solely because it is the lowest. The potential cost involved for fixing what the lowest bidder did will undoubtedly cost you way more in the long run. On the same token, I do not recommend going with the highest price assuming that you will get the best service. I would suggest doing some homework and making sure that the price is realistic. The internet is a great way to check the authenticity of the estimate. There are many blogs where other homeowners share their experiences and costs for the project. Keep in mind, prices change based on geographical location so make sure that you are comparing apples for apples.
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