Remember: you don’t need to hire the first contractor you meet. Your home improvement deserves an experienced hand, and finding the right contractor might require you to shop around a bit. We recommend spending time researching beforehand. So consider the type of contractor you need, then ask a few different contractors for bids.
You’ll be working closely with your contractor for the duration of your remodel—make sure you pair up with a team you can comfortably communicate with about your project needs so you can enjoy a stress-free renovation.
Great contractors earn great reviews, so use referrals to your advantage. Who better to recommend a contractor than a homeowner who has recently been through the renovation process? Use your social network to gather recommendations. Start with family, friends, and colleagues who have completed a renovation or remodel in the past year. Would they recommend their contractor?
You can also expand your search to local real estate agents, building inspectors, and suppliers, as they often work side-by-side with local contractors and may be able to recommend those that meet code requirements.
Your home renovation might require specialized attention. Subcontractors have particular areas of expertise; they may focus on one type of home improvement project, or only work on certain styles of homes.
While general contractors oversee the entire construction process, specialty contractors are responsible for the completion of one specific job. Examples of specialty contractors include lighting, plumbing, heating and cooling, roofing, and painting professionals.
Remember to ask for proof of credentials. General contractors and subcontractors should have a license, although the type of license required can differ depending on location. Taking the time to verify their credentials can help ensure the workmanship will be up to your standards.