Choosing a Contractor
Choosing a home remodeling contractor is not always as simple as picking the lowest cost bid for the job. Often times, the lowest cost bid ends up being the most expensive. The old saying “you get what you pay for” carries a lot of meaning in the remodeling business. It is equally important to do some homework during the selection process of finding the right contractor for your project. While a lot of this seems to be common sense, we see more common mistakes than sense. Therefore, it is very important to address the following questions when choosing a contractor for your remodeling project:
Is the contractor willing to sit down and help you do an apples-to-apples comparison of estimates from different contractors?
Often times apples-to-apples comparisons are difficult for you as a homeowner to do since no two contractors prepare their estimates the same. At Todd Construction, we are more than happy to sit down with you to go over and compare our estimate to any of our competitors, AT NO CHARGE.
Does the contractor come highly recommended from his/her references?
We usually give out a list of at least 8 references for you to call on. While references are helpful, we like to take it a step further by inviting you to visit any of our completed projects. This gives you the opportunity to see our work first hand rather than rely on pictures to assess our workmanship. We willingly offer this because our work sells itself.
Is the contractor adequately insured, licensed, and registered with the state of Iowa?
This question is paramount in ensuring you are working with a qualified contractor as well as protecting yourself as a homeowner. Even though we have never had to file a claim, we have a $2 million liability policy and have been a registered contractor with the state of Iowa since the inception of our business. We will be more than happy to provide our certificate of insurance, as well as contractor registration card.
Is the contractor’s trade partners adequately insured and licensed in their trade?
Equally important, all of the trade partners we use on our jobs are fully insured and licensed. Again, we would be happy to provide you with their certificates of insurance and information needed to check on their state licensure.
What level of quality does the contractor use for their materials/products?
At Todd Construction, we are very particular on the quality of materials and products we use on any of our jobs. Our philosophy is; any material or product we would not use in our own home, we would not use in yours. We would be more than happy to share with you the brands of products we use and where we purchase them.
How does the contractor deal with changes that may occur as the job progresses?
We welcome any changes that may occur during the construction of your project. Our goal is to ensure that when we are finished with your project it is not only done to your satisfaction, but also meets the needs of your family.
Is the estimator or person you initially meet with, the one who will be on the job everyday?
This is a very important consideration, as this helps ensure what’s discussed and promised is followed through. I assure you when visiting with me, as the owner of Todd Construction, you are talking to the person that is on the job every day. On days I have a trade partner on the job, I am usually either on the job or make a point to stop by the job to check on progress and accuracy.
Will the contractor follow up on your needs and concerns after the job is completed?
Most of our jobs are from repeat business or referrals. Therefore, it is very important that we not only gain your trust to do your current project, but that you are more than willing to consider us for future projects and give us a good referral after the work is completed. Consequently, we like to make it a point to address any needs or concerns you may have after the job is done.
How many jobs does the contractor have going on at any one time?
Often times, contractors have so many projects going on at once, that it is impossible to effectively manage all the jobs at the same time. This results in a loss of communication, mistakes, poor quality, and a prolonged project.