The decision to undertake an improvement project at your home may necessitate the need to retain the services of a contractor. There are a number of steps you need to consider taking in advance of hiring a contractor for a home improvement project. One of these steps is interviewing a prospective home improvement contractor.
When it comes to preparing to interview a home improvement contractor, there are a number of questions to bear in mind. Indeed, there are some essentially queries that you must make of a prospective home improvement contractor.
How long have you been in business?
Experience certainly matters when it comes to a home improvement contractor. A primary question that you want to explore during an interview with a home improvement contractor is about length of time in the industry and other experience related matters.
Part of this line of inquiry needs to focus on how long a contractor has been operating the existing enterprise. You will also want to find out about prior companies and roles a contractor has been involved with in the past.
Do you specialize in any types of home improvement projects?
One specific type of questioning about insurance you will want to pursue involves different types of home improvement projects a contractor has undertaken. In the final analysis, you want to be certain that you select a home improvement contractor that has experience with the specific type of work you would like undertaken at your residence.
Can you verify your insurance and whether you are bonded?
Hopefully, nothing will go awry when it comes to your home improvement project. Nonetheless, as part of an interview with a home improvement contractor, you will want to ask questions about the contractor and the team being bonded and properly insured.
You really will want to take the questioning on these issues a step further. You will want to ask for proof of appropriate insurance and bond or bonds. A contractor should be able to provide you proof of insurance and bonding with ease.
How do you screen subcontractors and employees?
As you have been involved in a process of fully screening a prospective contractor, you will also want to understand what due diligence a contractor employs when it comes to subcontractors and employees and other team members. For example, when it comes to workers who will be on site for your project, you will want to inquire about what specifically has been done in way of background checks for this individuals.
Can you provide the names of references?
A truly important aspect of due diligence when it comes to engaging the services of a home improvement contractor is obtaining references from that contractor. During an interview with a prospective contractor, take the time to ask about references. Obtain names and contact information for references that you can contact about a contractor’s services.
Of course, you will want to obtain the names and contact information for prior clients of a contractor. In addition, consider obtaining the names and contract information for contractors as well as vendors that a contractor has dealt with regularly in the past.
What type of payment structure do you typically follow?
The payment structure associated with a home improvement process is crucial. An initial interview with a prospective contract is an ideal time to start the process of how payments will be undertaken during the course of a home improvement project. F example, what milestones does a contractor have in mind in regard for payment triggers.
By discussing payment milestones associated with your planned project during an initial interview, you will place yourself in a better position to plan accordingly and to ensure that what a contractor envisions in this regard will work for you.
What type of contract do you anticipate using?
A contract for a home improvement project must be in writing. It must be a detailed, specific contract that sets forth the obligations and rights of both parties.
During an initial interview with a contract, questioning a contractor about what is anticipated in regard to a contract is a necessary move. By opening the doors to a discussion of the contents of a written contract for a home improvement project, you will be in the best position to ensure that a suitable, appropriate agreement ends up being crafted for your endeavor.
By using these tips to prepare for a home improvement contractor interview, you will ensure that you glean all the information you need. You will be in the best possible position to make an educated decision in hiring a home improvement contractor.
Jessica Kane writes for Advance Online, a leading provider of web-based OSHA. DOT. and HAZWOPER training.