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#397833 - 08/29/07 09:05 PM Guidelines for hiring contractors
carrfamilynj Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/21/03
Posts: 2576
Loc: South Jersey Woods
Can this be a sticky?

1. Ask for a list of current references-AND CHECK THEM THOROUGHLY!

2. Check www.bbb.com for any complaints filed against them.

3. Verify that they are properly licensed in your jurisdiction by calling the appropriate governing board.

4. Ask for proof of liability insurance, and call the insurance company to confirm!

5. Ask for citizenship status on their employees that will be working on your house-this will scare off most!

Anyone else care to add to the list?

#397834 - 08/29/07 10:00 PM Re: Guidelines for hiring contractors [Re: carrfamilynj]
espresso Offline

Registered: 08/14/07
Posts: 83
Great list!

Also, get completion dates in writing as well as which quality materials will be used.
If a fish wants to be a fish stick when it grows up it must have good posture!

#397835 - 08/29/07 10:13 PM Re: Guidelines for hiring contractors [Re: espresso]
morrisdancer Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/27/05
Posts: 9200
Loc: Michigan
Excellent! Also get product and labor warranties in writing

Thanks, Chris and Ernie!

#397836 - 08/30/07 08:31 AM Re: Guidelines for hiring contractors [Re: morrisdancer]
bljack Offline
Super Handyman

Registered: 07/12/04
Posts: 1906
Loc: Central Jersey
As an addendum to #4, I cannot stress enough to ask for proof of workers comp for each person on the job, and call to verify.

Nothing beats a visit to a work in progress visit either.

#397837 - 08/30/07 11:21 AM Re: Guidelines for hiring contractors [Re: carrfamilynj]
FranS Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/21/02
Posts: 44792
don't forget lien waivers.
�When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser.� Socrates

#397838 - 09/01/07 04:20 PM Re: Guidelines for hiring contractors [Re: FranS]
Dave_J Offline

Registered: 08/22/02
Posts: 267
Loc: north dakota
how about dont pay a dime until the material is on site or the work is done. If your contractors business is so poor he cannot buy or charge the material at the supplyhouse it may be time to shop for another contractor.
this message is coming from sunny and warm north dakota

#397839 - 09/03/07 08:43 AM Re: Guidelines for hiring contractors [Re: Dave_J]
mjswindows Offline

Registered: 07/24/05
Posts: 108
Loc: Massachusetts
Dont pay a dime until the work is done. Contractors should get 1/2 down to cover himself, in case when the job is done and the homeowner dosent pay. Yes it does happen.
Keep the rubber side down!!!!!

#397840 - 09/03/07 10:51 AM Re: Guidelines for hiring contractors [Re: carrfamilynj]
Wouldheart10 Offline

Registered: 01/07/07
Posts: 7010
Let's say a down payment has been made of half the job price. If nothing ever happens, the contractor is guilty of fraud. If he shows up even for one day with a pile of fence wood and a gang of illegals, then you are haggling over the quality of the "work". Different game, harder for you to win. You have to get it all in writing, start, complete, holdback. And a good clause to include even if it it cosmetic is that the work must be done to good professional trade standards., That at least lets you invite the opinions of other established contractors who can tell the judge that your guy sucked.
contumacious but neither pusillanimous nor truculent

#397841 - 09/03/07 11:32 PM Re: Guidelines for hiring contractors [Re: carrfamilynj]
geraldreds Offline

Registered: 04/12/05
Posts: 355
How about an itemized list of work to be done with corresponding list of materials and total cost for each item.

I had a local contractor do some kitchen remodeling for me. Had excellent references and lived in the neighborhood. He had about 10 separate items to be done, but gave me a price for the entire job. Work was excellent, but he got held-up finishing the job due to some product not being available (that I was to provide), he said that he would have to move on to a big job, but would come back in the next week or so, and finish-up..."about a day-plus to complete." Said, he would cost out the remaining work,and I could pay him for the work done, less the work pending.

He came up with $300 for the pending work...I paid him, less this amount. Needless to say, it has been a month now, and he hasn't come back. On checking with other contractors to get the pending work done, as a contingency, they almost laugh at the $300...closer to $1,000. My faith still remains the work will be done, because he left his tools for the work, and I have been told being "timely" is not one of his assets. But, as one individual told me, $300 is pocket change with the demands for good contractors today...once they move on to another job...they would probably welcome you telling them to come get their tools and take a hike...

My point is that, even though the fault of not having the product was mine, and I could understand he had to move on to another job, rather than wait...I should have held back sufficient funds to have another contractor complete the job, or at least what he stated in an itemized bid before he started...not what he said the cost was in the above scenario, at the end of the job.


#397842 - 09/10/07 08:11 AM Re: Guidelines for hiring contractors [Re: FranS]
Able_Dog Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 53901
Loc: Huntsville AL

don't forget lien waivers.

How do you get a lien waiver when you HIRE a contractor?

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