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<- Home Improvement Basics

Choosing the Right Contractor

Choosing the right contractor is similar to choosing a dentist, doctor, or any specialized profession - make a mistake in your choice and it may cost you dearly. There are a number of ways to qualify a contractor and make sure you have the right professional for the right job. Follow our guide below to hire a trusted, reliable, and experienced contractor.

  • Research Your Project Needs - The internet makes it so easy to research virtually any topic nowadays. If you need a window replaced, a water heater installed, roof repaired, or any other home improvement project simply go to Google and type your project and add "research". You will be given a wealth of information about your project and be able to learn how and why you should continue with the project. Knowing more about your project needs beforehand will help in your conversations with the project. You will also be familiar with some of the home improvement terms that the contractor will most likely use.

  • Read Reviews on the Contractor - There are a number of free services such as and Google Reviews that will provide start ratings for many contractors in your area. Read the reviews on the contractors and you will get a much better idea of how the contractor performed for other customers. In addition, never hire a contractor that is not licensed and insured in your state.

  • Ask for a Portfolio and References - Many good contractors are very proud of their work and keep pictures of the before and after of projects they have performed. Ask if they have pictures. Also, ask for references, names, and numbers of previous customers. A great contractor will be happy to give you references and show you highlights of their previous work.

  • Obtain an Itemized Quote - First off, quotes should always be free. If someone is trying to charge you for going out to your house to estimate a quote then tell them you are not interested in paying for a quote and move on to the next contractor. Once a quote is provided, ask for a breakdown of the cost of materials and the cost of labor so you know exactly what you are paying for. Get quotes from a handful of contractors this way and compare labor costs for the best deal.

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