Things You Should Check Before Hiring a Builder
Selecting and hiring the right builder for your project is not easy at all. If you don’t invest time checking and considering several important things, you might end up hiring a builder who won’t be able to give justice to your project. Some of the red flags you shouldn’t ignore are – a poorly written contract, vague builder quotes, lack of references, unresolved claims, no evidence of a certificate of insurance, etc.
Are you planning on remodeling or a new project? This article got you covered with adequate information on the things to check before hiring a builder. It will help you detect the above red flags in the initial stage and hire competent builders for the task.
5 Things that Should Consider Before Hiring a Builder
1. Previous Work
No doubt, selecting the competent builder requires you to assess their past projects. If possible, consider looking into projects similar to yours. Therefore, consider asking for references from a builder. A good builder should provide such details to you.
Suppose a builder has provided the details; what will you be looking for? Check on the list of the clients they have worked with recently. Get in contact with them and enquire about how the builder managed the project’s timelines, quality, communication, estimates, etc. You can as well check other customer’s reviews from the builder’s site.
This approach will help you understand the kind of builder you’ll be dealing with and if they can deliver the project within your expectations.
A builder may provide photos of their already projects. They can as well take you on a tour of their project if the owners are willing.
2. Licensed and Insured
It’s not a surprise; you might find out that a builder is not insured. However, most of them have a certificate of insurance, and those with employees ought to have employee liability insurance. Therefore, don’t skip or fear to ask about it.
Genuine and reputable builders will prove they are insured. Some will provide it on their marketing materials or highlight it while conversing with them. Conversely, a builder who can’t provide evidence of insurance is a big red flag you must not ignore.
3. Warranty of Material Used
When hiring a builder, you expect them to deliver a durable quality project. However, projects involve different people to complete, and some problems you didn’t anticipate might happen in the future. Therefore, it’s vital to ask about their warranty.
Suppose a contractor or a builder offer warranties, then ensure they commit it in writing. Avoid such commitments in a conversation or a phone call. That will help you fix some of the problems that might occur within the validity of the warranty.
Additionally, enquire about the materials a builder will be using in your project and have manufacturers’ warranties.
A competent builder understands that they should provide their clients with a specification sheet of the materials for the project. Basically, it highlights the kind of materials to be used. As a client, you should enquire and see samples or a showcase of the materials.
Additionally, a builder should inform you of essential details such as the warranty period of particular materials.
4. Project’s Timeline
A good builder should give you a reasonable estimate of how long it will take them to complete the project after explaining all and exact details regarding your project. However, a builder giving you timelines before getting all the details is a red flag.
Generally, consider a builder who commits to genuine timelines and one who honestly explains why your project might take a particular time. Avoid those who commit to a short timeline for big projects because they are likely to under-deliver.
5. Written Quote
As a client, avoid buying the idea of rough estimates of how much your project will cost. Ask for a written quote from your builder highlighting all requirements, how much do builders cost, labor cost, etc. It will help you easily manage your finances and still understand how your money is being used.
Building projects can be expensive and requires you to have a better way of accountability. Among the questions, most people ask themselves is, “how much does a builder cost?” Builders charge different rates from $70 to $120 per hour depending on several factors such as nature of work, location, building services offered, etc. However, some builders opt to charge their services at a flat rate or per project.
Above are the key things you must check before hiring a builder. They will help you select the best and competent builders with the right skills and knowledge related to your improvement project. As a result, you’re likely to hire a builder who will deliver quality.
Also, consider meeting several builders while hiring. It gives you variety and the chance to narrow down to the best among all.
Lastly, depending on your project’s size, ensure you get a written contract covering everything you agreed. It’s an essential document that can help you recover some of your money in case the builder doesn’t deliver as agreed.