Taking on a major construction job can be intimidating and overwhelming. Hiring a general contractor will ease the burden of coordinating all the vendors and will save you money, time, and frustration. But who do you entrust with your project?
We get it. Finding the right person to partner with feels like a project in itself, but it doesn’t have to be hard. Follow these five steps to confidently select the best general contractor for the job.
- Have a plan.
Know what you want to get done. Whether you’re looking to do a new build or a renovation, outline the plans with pictures, drawings, and a list of desired work. An architect or designer can also help get your ideas in a format that is easy to share with potential contractors.
- Become familiar with and select specifications ahead of time.
The cost of a build can vary greatly based on the materials and finishes being used. Get familiar with the options available to you and make note of your top selections. Tile or hardwood floors? Brass or antique hardware? Hollow or solid doors? All these items come with a different price tag and are important to start thinking about before you ask for quotes.
- Ask for quotes.
Ask around for recommendations for contractors and start submitting your request for quotes. If you’ve done your homework (created a plan and selected preferred finishes), this should be a relatively easy and quick process. The contractors will respond with a bid for your job, which will detail the expected price of the job based on the information you provided. Review all bids carefully and don’t be afraid to ask for additional details about line items you don’t understand.
- Research your potential contractors.
Price isn’t everything. After you’ve compared your quotes, you’ll want to dig a little deeper. We highly encourage you to do as much research on your potential contractors as you need to feel comfortable with them. Ask the important questions, like if they are insured. Read their online reviews. Request to see their portfolio of similar jobs and references. Call their former clients to find out how the contractor did.
- Interview your potential contractors.
The final step before signing on the dotted line is to get familiar with your contractor. How will they communicate with you? How often will they visit the job site? Do they use any apps to keep you informed about progress? How do they prefer you communicate regarding questions and job changes? You will be spending a lot of time with your contractor. Take the time to understand each other and set expectations.
Once you’ve completed these five steps, you will be ready to pick the right person for the job!