October 2, 2022 #1 Local News, Forum, Information and Event Source for Venice Beach, California.

Critical Questions to Ask a Contractor Before They Remodel Your House

Hiring a contractor can be a terrifying venture. You’ve probably heard the horror stories. Maybe you’ve heard rumors about half-done work, things falling apart, and homes destroyed. This doesn’t create much consumer confidence when you’re looking to get work done in your home. But for every bad story there is an equally happy ending. It’s possible to hire a great contractor for your Venice remodel when you take your time and ask these critical questions.

What Kind of Insurance Do You Have?

Insurance is important. Your homeowners’ insurance isn’t going to cover their mistakes or injuries. You want to be sure they are insured not only to cover any damage done to your home, but also to cover any injuries they sustain in the process. You’ll want to make sure that their policy is high enough to pay for anything that your insurance would not cover.

Do You Have References I Can Contact?

It’s always great to hear firsthand experiences people have with a contractor. You can ask about how well they did the work. You can find out if the construction crews cleaned up after themselves. You can discover if the cost was a lot higher than expected. You’ll want to ask about things related to quality of work, timeline, and costs. Talking to references may not always be possible, which is why Networx reviews are so amazing. They are one of many online resources that share reviews of contractors with potential customers.

What Licensing Do You and Your Team Carry?

Licensing is important. You can easily check a contractor’s credentials with the California state databases to ensure they are current. You can also check for complaints against them and their company to help you decide if they are someone you want to work with. Licensing means they have met certain standards and understand how to do things the right way. While unlicensed handymen aren’t necessarily bad, there is simply no way for you to vet their abilities.

How Much Experience Do You Have With This Type of Remodel?

Whether you are adding a deck or redoing the kitchen in your Venice home, you want to know if the contractor you’re hiring has ever done that type of project before. It can make a big difference in the cost of the overall project, the quality of work, and the speed at which it gets completed. Hiring experienced contractors can save you a lot of frustration. Also, while a contractor might be great at bathrooms, if they’ve never completed a kitchen remodel, they might underestimate the time it takes to order materials so they can complete the tasks in the right order.

Do You Handle Building Permits in Venice, CA?

Hiring a contractor to do the work means you don’t need to fuss with doing the permits yourself. Endless piles of paperwork can be left to the contractors if they know what they are doing. You want to ensure the team you hire has experience with filling out the paperwork in Venice so that they know where to go, who to talk to, and what the city and county expect. Whether it’s a home remodel, or you’re hiring a contractor to help you open a new sandwich restaurant, they should be well-versed in local laws. Building permits can make or break a project.

Who Will Supervise the Project?

You’ll want to know who will be on site each day making sure the crew is getting everything done and staying on task. Another follow-up question to this one is whether they will use a crew that works directly for their company or if they will be subcontracting the work out. You want to be sure that the people they assign to complete your remodel are qualified to do it. Having the right supervisor on site can give you confidence that someone is paying attention to the little things.

How Do I File a Complaint?

Whether the crew is leaving a mess everywhere, or they aren’t showing up during the agreed upon work window, you need to know who you can talk to to correct any issues. Filing a complaint within the company is the best first place to start. When all else fails, you can contact regulatory agencies and file complaints online if they are doing subpar work or things that are risky or illegal.

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