How to Find the Best Home Exterior Contractor
Renovating the exterior of your home is definitely an exciting project to take on. While it’s tempting to imagine a successfully finished look, it’s also crucial to consider several things in getting the best exterior contractor for your project. Getting a reliable professional home exterior contractor is the key to ensure the success of your project. Therefore, it’s essential to do your research and carefully select the best candidate for improving your home exterior.
Choosing a local roofing company has its advantages. For example, if you’re around Virginia, you can choose an Alexandria home exterior contractor. That way, it’s easy to check their past work as they’ve most likely established their business and reputation in the community. Choosing local is also great in case anything comes up after job completion so that you can easily claim and check the warranty of the materials used.
Think About Your Budget
Although your budget shouldn’t necessarily be your primary consideration for choosing a contractor, it should be one thing to ponder on. To reduce the chances of spending more than you intend to, here are some tips:
- Stick only to the amount you can afford to pay. Figure out your ideal number, but also determine what the maximum would be as well so that you know how much wiggle room you can tolerate.
- Think about all things you need to pay for including installments, down payments, materials, and the project costs.
- In estimating costs, it’s better to add a little extra. This will help cover any unexpected expenses that might occur.
- Avoid paying too much upfront. The normal down payment expected from you is at least ten percent.
Inquire About Materials
Talk to a prospective contractor about the materials you intend to use. This is important because the materials that will be used to do your exterior project will affect many things including the feel, look, cost, durability, or return on investment. Whether you’re creating a garden or landscaping your backyard, it’s crucial to:
- Reflect on what’s most important for you – the purpose of the project, overall cost, or if you’re selling your home or not, etc.
- Determine the pros and cons of various materials such as fibreglass versus vinyl windows, or fibre cement versus wood siding.
- Look for a contractor that’s experienced and trained to work with your preferred materials.
Talk to Several Prospects Before Choosing
A home remodeling project can be a great investment, and as such you’ll want to make the most out of your money. Thus, it’s best to interview several contractors and compare them based on their:
Ask for Referrals
Reliable contractors that deliver well are be happy to give references because they take pride in their work. Here are some ways to check their work quality:
- Ask family, friends, or your neighbors who have worked with these prospect contractors for their recommendation.
- Check the contractor’s online portfolio.
- Ask for references you can call of clients they have worked with in the past.
- Check for reviews or ratings of the contractor.
Look for Permits, Licenses and Insurance
Home exterior contractors usually need specific types of permits and licenses to do business. Municipal requirements and laws may differ among locations, but a contractor should possess an updated and valid proof of liability and workman’s insurance.
Obtain a Contract
Home improvement projects should come with a legal contract that contains all detailed information including the following:
- Complete name, address, phone number, and license number of contractor
- Estimated timeline including start and completion dates
- Complete payment schedule including the dates and amounts due
- Detailed materials list including quantity, brand, color, sizes, etc.
- Scope and limitations of the contractor’s work as well as what the homeowner is expected to handle
- Possible conditions that will have the contract amended or canceled
As soon as work begins, it’s crucial for a homeowner to monitor each step of the remodeling project. This will ensure that work is done properly and should also be helpful in filing an insurance claim in case of problems. Here are some things you should keep:
- Change orders
- Proof of payments
- Signed copies of contract
- Correspondence with the contractor including texts, emails, phone conversations, or letters
- Pictures of the project while being done
Perform a Final Review
Before giving the final payment, ensure that you review all the work has been satisfactorily completed. Here are some questions to ask yourself before you provide final payment:
- Did the project meet the standards that you agreed upon?
- Is the job site clear of debris and already clean?
- Do you have the receipts of subcontractor and supplier payments?
- Do all workmanship and materials have warranties?
- Is the job complete?
Carefully choosing an exterior contractor is key to the success of your home improvement project. While there are many contractors who are just a call a way, it’s best that you screen your options to check for their credibility, previous work experience, skills in the material you plan to use, and any necessary permits and licenses.