6 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Contractor

Are you planning to build an extension, remodel your bathroom or bedroom, undergo a loft conversion? If you are planning on doing work to increase your home’s value, it can be a must to bring in residential contractors that know what they are doing to help you through the process.

The majority of home renovations and property restorations can be a costly and time-consuming project, and so it is important that you trust the contractors that you hire. You will be seeing a lot of them and you want to ensure that you can put the success of the project in their hands. So there are several questions you need to ask your contractors before hiring them.

What Experience Do You Have?

Ask your contractor how long they have been in business and if they have worked on similar projects to what you want. The more projects they’ve worked on that are similar to yours, the more likely it is that they have better knowledge than a business that has just started out. This isn’t always the case, however by gauging information about the contractor’s experience it will help you to see what they have accomplished in the past and if you like the work and results they have achieved.

How Long Will This Project Take?

Your contractor should be capable of providing you with a rough timeline of how long the project will take. Further, they should include potential obstacles that might slow down the process or get in the way of the project being completed and how long for.

Often it can be a warning sign when a contractor provides an exact timeline with little information about the project. Find a contractor that is open and honest with you about how long the project will take and if it is going to take longer than expected, make sure that they can take you through exactly why it would take this long.

Do You Have Insurance?

A construction site can be a dangerous place, not just for the people who are living or working in the area, but also for those who may be walking by. It is UK Law that all contractors should have public liability insurance. If the contractors have employees, it is also a lawful obligation that they have employer’s liability insurance also.

Ask your contractors to let you see their insurance certificates. If your contractors aren’t willing to provide substantial proof, don’t move further in working with them as this could mean that they don’t have the correct insurance to cover you and your home if anything were to happen.

Who Will Be Working on The Project?

Not only is it nice to know who will be on your property each day, but it is important that you have a relationship with the project manager and workers so that you can voice any concerns or changes you may have.

Are the workers trained and what experience do they have? Are they subcontractors? Hiring subcontractors could be a sign that the contractors know they need an extra set of hands and are taking your project seriously by thinking it fully through.

Make sure that the people who will be working on your project are people you don’t mind being in your house every day.

How Will I Pay For These Services?

When contractors become pushy and ask for upfront payments, it is usually a bad sign. Those that are confident in the work they are doing and that the results will be as agreed won’t ask for a cash payment before any work has taken place. It is normal for a contractor to ask for a small percentage deposit but anything more than 10% could be a red flag.

It is important to ask the contractors how much money is due and when it is due. It is even more so important to get this put down in writing for future reference.

What Sort of Building Permissions Do I Need?

If your contractor knows what they are doing, they should have the expertise to tell you whether or not you will need any building permissions such as planning permission, approval from the building regulations or compliance with the Party Wall Act.

Check with the council to see that the permissions obtained by the contractor have gone through and ask them if they will charge you for this service.

Final Thoughts

Finding a good local contractor can be hard, especially one that you trust. Get in touch with us here at Form Construction to work transparently and cohesively with a contractor you can trust on your next project.