4-Step Guide to Hiring the Right Contractor
1) Get clear about what it is that you need done. I recommend writing down or making a list of exactly what you want to be accomplished in your home or business before you look around for someone to complete it. If you are clear about the vision you want created or the need that you want filled, then it will be much easier for you to hire the appropriate contractor. This may seem like an obvious thing to do, but most people hire first and then they get clear on their needs but the problem is that not all contractors are the same! If you are clear on what you need before you hire, then you can hire the more appropriate person to do the job!
2) Ask around. Odds are, someone that you know and trust has used some sort of contractor before. From electricians to construction contractors, a recommendation from a friend that has used a contractor is often times more helpful than a Google search. You can ask your friends much more than you can ask Google. Contractors are also extremely flattered when they come to find out that they were referred to you by a client of theirs.
3) Meet in person. This is important. First impressions really do matter and it is crucial that you feel good about the person that you will be paying to do a service in your home or business. Someone may have an impressive website, but it doesn't at all reflect their personality or quality of work. You wouldn't hire a lawyer or an accountant without first speaking with them. Do not be fooled by today's technology of creating appointments via email, website or even text message to avoid having to speak or meet the person on the other end... Most contractors offer free surveys so take advantage of that time to meet the contractor, even if you are already sure of what you need and how much it will cost. Getting in touch with a contractor will also eliminate those who refuse to answer the phone and those who will not return your call! You want to choose someone who is on time (because they respect your time), someone who appears to be clean and organized (because they will treat your project in the same respect) and someone who is knowledgeable and understands exactly what you are looking to complete.
4) Have an appreciation for value. If you are looking to hire some sort of contractor, it usually means that you have a need that you yourself cannot fill or do not have the time to fill; You are ultimately looking for someone else to fill the need that you have. Today's world has unfortunately lost the culture of specialization and the appreciation for the skills that someone else has that you do not. Don't be afraid to spend the money that is necessary to hiring someone of value. They cost that much more because they are worth that much more. If you are looking to take the cheaper route, you have to keep in mind that you often times get what you pay for! Of course, stick within your budget and do what you can afford. But, try to be prepared for a little bit of sticker shock when you find out just how much even the smallest projects can cost. Remember that you are receiving something of value in return!