Experts Advise Homeowners to get Multiple Estimates for Contract Work
With the steep decline in home purchases since 2008, naturally the home remodeling and repair industry has taken a similarly devastating blow. Today, shoddy work and pinch-a-penny contractors are a dime a dozen, as a traditionally stable industry tries to cling tooth and nail, hoping to hold on until the Recession subsides.
There simply isn’t enough work to go around: so good workers do cheap work quickly to move on to the next job, and untrained/ unlicensed contractors offer their services at even lower prices, eventually leaving homeowners with more worries than solutions. For these reasons home improvement experts across the country are advising homeowners to get at least three estimates on any project before you select a contractor to do the work.
Here are a few more tips to keep in mind when searching for the right contractor to do the work on your home:
1) Home improvements are not a product or commodity. The cheapest offer is probably not the one you want to go with. Bad work can actually reduce the value of your home, and obviously cost at least double to repair.
2) Trust your instincts. Certainly nepotism breeds inefficiency – or worse – but the person you welcome into your home and trust with your most valuable investment, your home, should be someone you can communicate with well, who you trust around your children, who has a reputation of quality service – again, scouring the bargain basement for deals is often more trouble than it's worth.
3) Ask questions! Again, your home is your most valuable investment, a professional contractor understands this and will give you all the time you need to make your decision. The contractor should also be eager to hear your input and collaborate on the project with you. Again, it is YOUR home. Anyone who shows up with a contract in hand, or doesn’t seem particularly interested in what you have to say or spending time discussing your project, will probably do ho-hum work and leave you with less than what you asked for.
Shopping for a contractor is like shopping for a car, house, or mortgage. These are major investments that require careful consideration, and comparison between multiple options. Ask local friends, go down to your local government and ask for resources, of even check with the Better Business Bureau or Angie’s List online. Protect your investment and get the most out of your home by carefully considering multiple contractors before signing a contract for a home renovation project.