If you have a major residential construction project in mind for your house here in Utah, there’s a good chance that the DIY option is off the table. Working with the right contractor can ensure that large scale work gets done on time according to exact specifications.
However, it’s vital to do your diligence before deciding who gets the job. Whether you’re hiring a general contractor or someone more specialized, such as an electrician, plumber or framing contractor for your Utah home, you’ll want to vet them before making the big decision; here’s how.
As you research your contractor, you’ll be able to come across some customer reviews which may prove helpful in determining whether or not you’ve found the right person for the job. A good place to start is on social media, or through word-of-mouth referrals.
Remember, though, that you also need to find reliable customers to give you a better picture. Otherwise, your impression of a contractor may be skewed by their skill, or lack thereof, when it comes to aggressive self-promotion across social media and other online platforms.
If you have the time, make inquiries around your local area. Building inspectors, or suppliers of materials such as lumber, can give you an idea of which contractors make use of quality materials. Find homes with features or improvements along the lines of what you have in mind, and ask the homeowner if they could refer a good contractor for that sort of job.
License and credentials
While you may be considering certain contractors due to the lower cost of services, note that sometimes the difference in pricing is due to the lack of a professional license or credentials. You may end up doing more work yourself and paying more if you bring on unlicensed contractors to do the job.
Most contractors will have their relevant license and information about previous projects available on their website. Be wary when such details are missing or not disclosed upfront. You can look up licensed contractors under the Utah Department of Commerce Division of Occupation and Professional Licensing (DOPL).
How do they work?
When you’ve narrowed down your search a little, try to find out more about a given contractor’s portfolio. Especially if you have something specific or complicated in mind, you’ll want to see if a contractor has already handled similar projects in the past.
If possible, research how they work. The contractor may have a blog or social media post, which could give you some insight on whether they subcontract certain tasks, and to whom. You might also get a better idea of their employees’ particular skill or experience level.
An employer wants to conduct interviews among prospective applicants before taking them on board, and you shouldn’t approach your home construction project any differently. Having a discussion with potential hires about your project will give you a range of bids to work with.
You can directly pose some questions you might have formulated in the course of your research into the previous aspects.
Whether you correspond with the contractor by filling out a form on their website, or talk to them over the phone or in a face-to-face meeting, you’ll probably come away with a better grasp of how they conduct themselves and deal with clients.
Professionalism doesn’t ensure a perfect hire, but it’s an indication you’re off to a good start. Keep in mind that price isn’t everything when hiring a contractor. For a big and lasting home improvement, you want to get everything right – look for excellence and experience in every way possible.