Are you ready to update, repair, or add on to your home? If you’re investing a large sum of money into your biggest asset, you’ll want to make sure you’re putting your trust in the right home improvement contractor. If you want to be the most educated consumer, follow these tips for checking references and reviews. Picking the lowest-bidding home improvement contractor without any research could be cause for major regret in the future. Here’s how to check references and reviews before hiring a home improvement contractor.
Research Reviews on Multiple Sites
The first and most obvious thing to do is to check out a home improvement business on review websites. Facebook, Google Reviews, and Yelp are great places to start. One or two negative reviews could be taken with a grain of salt, but a pattern of poor reviews could direct you to cross that business off your list. Additionally, a simple Google search can tell you if there have ever been any lawsuits associated with that company.
Ask for References
The best way to get a sense of how a business operates is to speak directly to a former client. If the home improvement contractor is reputable, they should have no problem giving you a list of references. When you call them, have a list of questions ready, such as: “Did this contractor have good communication?” “Did they stay on schedule and within your budget?” “Were you happy with the quality of work?” or “Would you use them again in the future?”
Another way to get personal references is by posting a question on your neighborhood Facebook page or other neighborhood networking app, asking if anyone has used that company before.
Check on License, Insurance, and Bonding
Contractors should be licensed by the appropriate entity in their state. Licensed contractors are incentivized to follow building codes, pull permits, and produce quality work. If they violate the licensing entity’s standards, they could have their license revoked.
If a home improvement contractor carries liability and workers’ compensation insurance, it will protect them and you in the event of an accident in your home or on your property. If they don’t have these insurances, you could be required to pay for damage to your property or the medical bills of a worker injured on your property.
To be “bonded” means that the business has a surety bond. This extra layer of protection is there in case the company can’t finish the job for some reason, or they otherwise break the terms of your contract. The surety bond would step in to pay for another contractor to come and finish or re-do the project.
Unfortunately, you can’t assume that every home improvement contractor is licensed, insured, and bonded. But, fortunately, it’s easy to ask the company for proof. It’s a good idea to ask if their subcontractors are licensed and insured as well (e.g., plumbers, electricians, masons, etc.).
Leave Your Home Improvement Project Financing to the Experts
With all these reviews and references to worry about, you’ll be thankful that HFS Financial can take care of connecting you with the perfect home improvement loan. All you have to do is fill out our 60-second application. Within 24 business hours you will be contacted by one of our home improvement loan experts. The benefit of going with HFS Financial is that your project will be 100% fully funded up front. Remember, when it comes to home improvement projects, at HFS Financial, “You Dream It, We Finance It!”