Tips for Choosing a Home Remodeling Contractor

When it comes to home improvement projects, you may find that many of them are not “do it yourself”. If it’s time for a remodel of any room in your home, it may be in your best interest to leave it to a professional who knows just what it takes to deliver high quality results. Choosing a contractor to remodel your home is a big decision and should not be taken lightly. After all, who you hire could have a huge impact on the outcome of your project.

Choosing a Contractor

As you begin your remodeling contractor search, here are some important things for you to keep in mind.

Learn More: Reasons People Renovate Now

Experience

choosing a contractor - rustic modern bathroom remodel

The kind of project you’re wanting done can play a huge role in which contractor you choose. For example, if you’re making changes to your bathroom, you don’t want to hire a contractor that doesn’t have experience in bathroom renovations. Whether you’re changing the look of one room or doing a major overhaul of your home, it’s best to find a contractor who has experience and expertise in many different types of remodeling projects. Ideally, you want someone who can do it all. It’s also important to consider things like how long they’ve been in business and how many projects they’ve done that are similar to yours.

Project Details

choosing a contractor - people in design center looking at bathroom tile

Be sure you know exactly what you want to have done. Be specific about what you expect the finished project to look like. Think about the materials you want to use and how much money you have in your budget. Are you willing to bend on certain things if you need to? What elements are of top priority? Letting the contractors you’re talking to know these things up front can give you an idea of whether or not they’ll be able to give you what you want.

Many contracting companies have a showroom or design center where they showcase their materials and design styles to prospective clients. If the option is available to you, take advantage of it. Not only will this help you narrow down your decisions, but it will help bring your contractor clarity as well.  

Learn More: The Benefits of Going to a Design Showroom

Visit Our Showroom

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Interviews

choosing a contractor - game and entertainment room in attic

Choosing a contractor to remodel your home, is something that should be taken very seriously. After all, this is the quality of your home we’re talking about. You’re paying whoever you hire a good amount of money for their services. You should expect the best work, and they should be able to deliver it. As a general rule of thumb, it’s wise to interview at least three contractors for your job before you make a decision. Use that time to get to know the contractor. Try to get a feel for their work ethics, priorities, and overall dedication to their work. Don’t be shy when it comes to asking questions. It’s better to be thorough now than regretful later. The answers you get could end up being the deciding factor between one contractor and another.

Insurance

Before you hire a contractor, check with your insurance agent to see what is covered by your homeowner’s policy regarding home repairs and remodeling. Make sure that the contractors you’re interviewing have insurance, as well, and that that insurance has adequate coverage for your projects. Checking this out ahead of time can help save you a huge headache later on down the renovation road.

Previous Work

choosing a contractor - renovated kitchen before and after photo

Before choosing a contractor, take some time to look at the work they have done previously. They should have a portfolio with photos of recent jobs that show their overall quality of work. Take a look at their before and after photos to see if you like their style. If you know someone who has used them before, talk to them about their experience. How well did they communicate with them? How were their employees? Is the work they provided on their project of high quality? Are they happy with the results? This is a great way to get a better idea of how they work with their employees and with their customers. And remember, if you don’t like what you see, move on. You want the contractor you choose to be able to provide the results you’re looking for.

Licenses and Certifications

Home remodeling contractors, and even subcontractors, should be licensed. Before you hire anyone, check the requirements for your state. If a contractor isn’t licensed to do a job that you’re looking to have done, you may want to consider going with someone else. That way you can rest assured that your contractor has everything they need to legally start and finish the job.

References and Complaints

choosing a contractor - metal staircase in remodeled home

Before you start your search, ask friends and family members if they have any contractors they would recommend. Talk to them about their own experiences with them, as well as why they did or did not like them. Take some time to do your research and read online reviews. Keep in mind, however, that these alone should not have the final say in your decision. After all, one bad review from a disgruntled client does not mean the contractor or the company as a whole is not worth hiring.

Once They’re Hired

After choosing a contractor to trust with your home renovations, the next step is ensuring that your project is managed and completed well. Here are a few things for you to keep in mind.

Contract Details

choosing a contractor - stone and brick outdoor living space

It’s much easier to have details written out in your contract than to have disagreements in the middle of the project. Before any work begins, make sure your contract includes:

  • What work is to be done
  • Bids and costs
  • Subcontractor information
  • Deadlines
  • Payments
  • Material details

Any changes that are made to the project should be written up in detail and signed. You can even write your own addendum showing the changes – whether it be materials, cost or finish date.

You may think common sense should dictate the outcome of certain things. To be safe, however, no detail should be left uncovered. When finalizing your contract, include basic ground rules such as what bathroom the workers will use and what amount of cleanup will be done at the end of each work day.

choosing a contractor - remodeled kitchen

Be Reasonable

Even the best of contractors can’t foresee what problems may arise during a major or even minor renovation. Therefore, be prepared for the possibility that the job may end up costing a bit more than the original amount agreed upon. Some of this is unavoidable. Keep an open line of communication between yourself and your contractor to help avoid any unwanted surprises.

Payment

Most contracts require partial payment of the job up front or half-way through the project. Do not pay the total cost until the work is fully completed. Not only does the job need to be finished, but you need to be completely satisfied with the work before final payment is made. To help pay for your remodeling project, check to see if your contractor’s company offers the option of financing.

Learn More: Why You Should Finance a Home Remodel

Why DFW Improved?

choosing a contractor - DFW Improved team photo

Choosing a contractor doesn’t have to be stressful. At DFW Improved, we specialize in bringing high-quality work to our clients’ homes. We are dedicated to the visions and dreams they have for their space, and are always eager to deliver the best results possible. Our motto is to always leave it better than we found it, and that is exactly what we do. We do everything from start to finish, from the initial consultation to the final walkthrough. When you hire a DFW Improved contractor, you are getting a professional who understands the entire project and the process that goes along with it. We believe that your home deserves to be the best version of itself for you and your family. Whether you’re looking to remodel your kitchen or do a complete room addition, we can help make your dreams a reality.

Learn More: Why DFW Improved?

All In All

There are a lot of details to work out before you hire a contractor for your next remodeling project. You, of course, want the highest quality work with the best service in order to achieve the renovation of your dreams. Any home remodeling project is a big and important investment. Not only can it make living in your home more enjoyable, but it can also bring a significant increase in its value. This makes it even more important to find a contractor that is the right fit for you and your project. When choosing a contractor, you want to ensure you get the best available; someone who is dedicated to their work and determined to bring your home remodeling visions to life.

Don't Miss a Thing

Download our free Home Remodeling Contractor Interview Worksheet to help you stay on course during your next contractor interview!