Hiring a home renovation contractor is a crucial step in ensuring your home turns out how you want it to when everything is said and done. How can you be sure that you hire the right contractor for you? HFS Financial has all the tips and tricks you need to make the right decision. We will walk you through everything to look for in your contractor and how to finance everything for your important project.
Step 1: Decide Exactly What You Want Your Home Renovation Contractor to Do
The first step in any home improvement project is to decide exactly what you would like to see happen. For example, if you want to redo your bathroom, are you just repainting or will you have everything stripped down to reconfigure the entire layout? These are vastly different projects.
You will want to have specific instructions for any contractor you hire. They can help guide you through some things you might not think of, but having most things planned out will save everyone headaches in the long run. Forgetting to tell your contractor you want a light switch moved can add hundreds or even thousands of dollars to your project costs. They also may be unable to accommodate something if they don’t know about it upfront.
Sit down and make a list of any and everything you might like to have done. You can always back off if the budget looks like it will be too much. You also may be able to get more than you initially thought. Having a list to go over with your potential contractor will save you time and money.
Step 2: Find Licensed, Insured, and Bonded Home Renovation Contractors to Interview
A quick search online will pull up contractors in your area. You can also ask friends and family or neighbors about who they have used in the past. If they liked someone, you know you have a better chance of having a good experience as well.
Make sure anyone you decide to interview is licensed, insured, and bonded. If a contractor doesn’t have a license with your state, that is a big red flag. Being licensed means they will know regulations and codes to follow to keep you from coming across problems in the future, including possibly even needing to have work redone.
Your home renovation contractor should also be insured. This will protect you from being held responsible for the costs of any injuries or accidents that could happen on your property. Their insurance will cover these. We all know how quickly hospital bills and things can add up, so you could be in big financial trouble if your contractor doesn’t carry the right insurance.
Your home renovation contractor will also need to be bonded. This is done with the state, and while similar to insurance, it is slightly different. Being bonded ensures that you can get your money back if your project isn’t completed or done according to your initial agreement. The home renovation contractor pays money for the bond to ensure there is payment for the completion of the job if they are unable to finish.
Step 3: Gather Essential Documents from Your Home Renovation Contractor
Any home renovation contractor who is worth their weight will have proof of licensure, insurance, and bonding ready to go when meeting with you. You should be wary if they do not readily access this information.
You will also want to get a scope of work contract from them. This ties directly into step one. When working with contractors, it is essential to get a piece of paper stating everything that will be done with the project. This protects you from having to pay full price for an incomplete project. It also protects your contractor.
They should also provide you with a cost estimate and a schedule estimate. This gives you an idea of when to expect the project to be completed and how much you will need to pay for it. Having everyone sign off on this will help to prevent the end price from being shocking or the finish date from being unreasonable.
There are other things they may offer you, also. The more contracts and documents in place, the more protected everyone will be.
Step 4: Check References!
This step is likely the most intimidating but still essential to complete. The home renovation contractor should be able to provide you with the names of happy customers they have served. You can call these customers and ask questions. We have a blog with plenty of tips and ideas for questions to ask when you make this phone call.
You can also look at online reviews for the contractor. They should be primarily positive reviews. While every contractor will probably have some disgruntled customers, they should be small in number. Pay attention to how they respond to these customers. This will likely tell you more about the contractor than the review itself.
Step 5: Get Financing from HFS Financial to Make Your Home Renovation Dreams Come True
The final step is by far the easiest. You will likely need financing to complete the job. Home renovation contractors who do fantastic work also tend to charge accordingly. It is worth it in the long term because you know the job will be done right.
Don’t pay for your project with a credit card with crazy high interest rates or go with a home equity loan or line of credit. These run the risk of staged funding and can also come with variable rates. The rate on your loan will increase when the federal interest rate goes up, meaning you can pay unexpected amounts long term.
Instead, HFS Financial has a better option. In just 60 seconds, you can use our rate checker to see your rates for personal loans. This inquiry won’t impact your credit score either. With a personal loan through HFS Financial, you will have all of the funds you need to pay your contractor of choice, and there are never delays due to staged funding. With HFS Financial, “You Dream It, We Finance It!”