You've made the exciting decision to remodel your home. After thinking about it for some time you're ready to make the next move and bring in the professionals. Before you go out and hire a home remodeling contractor though you'll want to know for sure you're hiring on a team that works with you, understands what you're looking for, and will work with you to ensure the project is completed as you'd like. To do this there are a number of factors to consider remodeling, and if this is your first go-around with such a project you'll need to know what to look for in a contractor. To help, here are a few tricks of the trade to make it easier during your search for a home contractor.
What Are the Factors to Consider When Choosing a Contractor?
When looking for contractors there are a number of factors you'll want to keep in mind. First, go through the contractor's listed portfolio. This will show off the projects they are most proud of. Their website will also highlight the kind of services they specialize in and what kind of certifications they have. All of this should paint a picture of whether or not they will be a good fit for your needs.
Should you identify several contractors that do specialize in what you're interested in you'll then want to ask them for references. The references should help fill in the gaps and address questions you might have that the contractor is not able to answer. Some questions to consider include whether the contractor stayed within budget if they were on schedule if they treated the former clients and their property with respect and if the former customer would recommend them.
Of course, you'll also want to look at the cost. While you shouldn't just go with the cheapest or most expensive contractor (just because they are the most expensive doesn't mean they are the best), you need to make sure the project can be completed within your established budget.
It’s impossible to avoid a few regrets in life, but your remodeling contractor choice doesn’t have to be one of them. Keeping these factors in mind when you meet with renovators can help you ensure that you don’t spend the next 10 years wishing you’d made a different decision.
How long has the remodeling company been in business? Longevity isn’t a guarantee of quality, but it’s a good indicator. Companies that aren’t well run or don’t have the expertise necessary to perform complicated renovations usually don’t stay in business long. It’s also important to ask if the contractor has ever tackled the type of renovation you need.
Are you happy with what you see in the contractor’s portfolio? Completed projects showcase the scope of your renovator’s skills. Photographs should show close-ups in addition to a wide view of the completed space. If you don’t like what you see, it’s time to move on to the next remodeling contractor on your list.
It doesn’t make sense to skimp on renovations after spending thousands of dollars to buy your home. Yet, plenty of homeowners choose the contractor who offers the lowest price. Unfortunately, keeping costs low may mean that the company uses lower-quality materials or hires less-qualified carpenters. Although you certainly won’t want to overpay for your renovations, it’s important to consider what you’ll get for your money.
Ask renovators to provide detailed estimates that specify the type or brand of products and appliances that will be used and clearly break down cost of supplies, permits, labor, taxes and other fees.
4. Reviews and References
Remodeling websites are designed to inspire confidence. Although a talented web designer can make any business look impressive, photographs can be deceiving sometimes. Reviews and references from homeowners offer important information about the design/build process, project quality, professionalism and communication. Before you make a final decision, ask contractors for a list of references. Ask homeowners on the list these questions:
- Why did you choose the contractor?
- What type of work did the company perform?
- Were you satisfied with the final results?
- Do you experience any problems during the remodel? How were they handled?
- How did you communicate with the remodeler?
- How long did the project take?
- Would you choose the contractor for another project?
Is the company well known in the area? Businesses that have strong ties to the area are usually very concerned about their reputation. They’re not going to cut corners or do anything to compromise the quality of their projects.
6. Your Gut Feeling
People often overlook warning signs and convince themselves that they’re imagining things. Yet, subtle signs can often provide valuable information that can help you make a decision. If you don’t feel comfortable with the contractor or don’t feel that you’re receiving clear, understandable answers to your questions, it may be a good idea to reexamine your choice before you sign a contract.
Is your home outdated, too small, or lacking in the features and amenities you want? A renovation can update your home and give you the space you need. Contact us to discuss your remodeling needs.
What Three Basic Factors Should be Considered Before Starting a Remodeling Project?
You don't want to just into any home renovation project. This is a major investment in your time and resources, so you'll need to consider a handful of factors.
First, how long do you intend on remaining in the home? If you see yourself moving in the next several years it might be best to just fix up the small issues within the property and save the rest for a down payment or moving expenses. However, if you have no plans on moving any time soon then a home renovation will let you take full advantage of the return on investment.
Speaking of ROI, this is the next factor you should consider. Different renovation and remodeling projects have different returns on the money you put into the projects. Some projects, like installing new windows, roofing, and siding, can bring you the best bang for your buck. Depending on the neighborhood you live in adding a new bathroom and bedroom in the basement might be more valuable than renovating the kitchen. This is something important to keep in mind.
Third, you'll need to establish a budget. Renovation projects can quickly balloon if you're not careful. Thankfully, it is generally possible to tweak a renovation project to help bring it back down to cost (especially when it comes to bathrooms and kitchens). So have an established budget before moving forward with any remodel.
How Do I Choose A Home Contractor in Pittsburgh?
You'll want to keep the factors to consider when choosing a contractor in mind, as well as the three key factors you need to address before starting a home renovation project. All of this will go a long way in helping you choose a home contractor. However, on top of all this, you'll want to listen to your gut.
It's amazing how often your gut is right about nearly everything. If you are feeling uneasy then you should look elsewhere. So, do your research and narrow your search down to two or three contractors. From there, if the remaining contractors are close, and you're not sure which to go with, listen to your gut. Your gut will almost never let you down as long as you are open to what it has to say.
We're Here For You
There is a right contractor for every project. You just need to find them. We pride ourselves on offering a robust array of services to ensure every project we take on is done right. To find out if we'd make an excellent match give us a call. We'll go over what you're looking for and, if for whatever reason, it's not something we specialize in, we'll help connect you with a contractor that does. But chances are, we'll be able to do anything and everything you're interested in. The best way to determine this is to contact us at your earliest convenience.