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How-to-Choose-a-Contractor-for-Your-Home-Improvement-Project by pfinancecr


One of the most important decisions you'll make when doing improvements
to your home is selecting the contractor to do the work. Although he might
not be the least expensive bidder, a good contractor can save you thousands
of dollars on your project.

Beware of these types of contractors:

1. The disappearing contractor. If you choose unwisely, you might end up
   with a contractor that starts the job, does a little work, and then
   disappears with your money and never comes back to complete the job.
   Word of mouth recommendations are the best way to avoid getting
   involved with a vanishing contractor.

2. The contractor who hires unskilled labor. Another unsavory tactic used by
   bad contractors is hiring cheap, unskilled labor to do the work on your
   home. Unfortunately, the result can be disastrous. Not only will you have
   lost your money that you paid the contractor for the work, but you'll have
   to hire a second contractor to come in and repair the damage.

   • This expense can be easily avoided if you hire a reputable contractor
     in the first place. Although the more skilled contractor's rate will be
     higher, it can save you thousands of dollars to hire him from the start.

3. The thief. Theft of your personal property in your home can be a concern
   if you use a disreputable contractor or if he hires unsavory characters to
   do the work.

             Call the local
     Better Business Bureau office.                          Educate yourself.

  Inquire about any contractors you're        Know what type of specialists you'll need,
 interested in employing to ensure they       such as plumber, electrician, or carpenter,
have no pending, unresolved complaints                   to get the job done.
              against them.

                                                         Obtain written estimates.

   Meet with prospective contractors.           Ensure you get written, itemized lists of
                                               the estimated costs for the materials and
 You want to get a "feel" for contractors     labor to complete your home improvement
    you might be working with over              project. If you think something is priced
         several weeks' time.                  too high, inquire about it. Avoid agreeing
                                                     only on verbal statements your
                                                             contractor makes.

          Consider all aspects of
     getting your project completed.
                                                 Sign an agreed-upon contract with
                                              payments spread out at project milestones.
   Does the contractor have the right
credentials and certifications for the job?
   Are the estimated costs within your            If the estimate meets your needs, you've
                                                    gained positive information about the
budget? Did you gain positive information             contractor and his credentials are
    about the contractor and are you
         comfortable with him?                         what you want, it's time to sign.

           Ask your friends.                                 Check with your
                                                         local contracting board.
 The best way to find a competent
 professional is to ask your friends,             Obtain a list of licensed contractors
  family members and co-workers                   in your area. If someone is licensed,
which contractors they've had a good                 they've at least jumped through
          experience with.                             the hoops to get a reputable
                                                             business going.

It's important to find out what you can about any contractor you're
considering doing business with. Checking the better business bureau in
your area for any complaints on the contractor you're considering can alert
you to any unstable business practices.

Following these additional tips can help you choose a contractor that can
save you money and do a beautiful job on your project:

Choosing a contractor for your home improvement project requires some
research and due diligence on your part, however, when you follow these
action steps, you'll save money and be pleased with the reno!

Curtis Rose is an experienced professional with extensive experience in all
aspects of personal finance. Curtis writes and publishes articles, courses,
guides and special reports on his personal finance blog. Sign up for his
monthly personal finance newsletter and receives tons of free information
that you can use to help you reach financial freedom.


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