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Take care when selecting a contractor

by Spectrum Design+Build

Are you considering an addition or home renovation? If so, it's important to do your research before selecting a contractor. Of course we hope your choice is Spectrum Design + Build in Maryland, but if you're considering someone else keep these points in mind.

References. Any good remodeling or renovation firm will have client references. Speaking directly to other people in the surrounding communities will help you very quickly get a good feel for your service provider. If a firm can't quickly give you client references, run, run away...

Post-project reviews. Like references, good firms take the time to poll their customers after a project. They want to make sure the client was satisfied. Be sure to ask your service provider if they have conducted any post-project service interviews. If they have, chances are you can review these and immediately know the kind of firm you are dealing with.

Outsourcing. Ask if they outsource different aspects of their jobs. It's great to have a firm come in with all the bells and whistles, but in the current economy, that's not practical. When different people from various sub-companies are showing up on your doorstep every week, suddenly things can go haywire. Make sure the contractor you chose has a plan on how he will use subs on your project, and make sure he shares it with you, and you're in agreement with his plan. Be sure to go with a firm who promises a unified front, otherwise, you simply have no idea who you are dealing with, and that's no fun.

Work in town. Make sure you select a firm that has considerable depth and breadth when working in your town. Knowing the appropriate town policies and procedures can shorten project timelines and ensure project success.

Locally based. Working with a locally based firm means that work doesn't depend on the morning commute. Renovation and remodeling projects are inconvenient, and leveraging the efficiencies a local firm has to offer means workdays that start early, materials come from local providers, and weekly meetings take place in person. This is key.

The legal stuff. Make absolute sure the contractor you chose is licensed and insured. Have a contract and a Mechanics' Lien release.

There are many other things a homeowner can and should do when selecting a contractor, but these are the minimum a homeowner should accept. Calling Spectrum Design + Build will bring these, as well as other protections, to our Clients and homeowners.


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