5 Tips for Hiring Home Maintenance Pros
If you don’t have the expertise or time to handle these tasks, hiring a professional can help you stay on top of things. Here are quick tips on how to hire a contractor or service professional from Katherine Hutt, director of communications with the U.S. Better Business Bureau.
1.) Ask friends and family for references. After you have some names to work with, look the providers up on BBB.org to check their rating for complaints against the business. The more research you do, the more questions you’ll know to ask — especially if online reviewers have called out specific issues, Hutt says.
2.) Make sure you read bids and contracts thoroughly. Don’t let anyone pressure you to sign on the spot. If you don’t understand something, ask for clarification. The bigger the project, the more important it is to take time to review contracts (or have your lawyer do it).
3.) Know the difference between an estimate and a contract. Provide a spec sheet of what services or products you want so you can compare bids. When it’s time to put things in writing, request a contract that details the provider’s warranties, payment schedule, line item list of each service being performed, and a timeline of completion.
4.) Don’t pay for projects upfront. This is especially true of major remodeling projects. Hutt recommends that you structure payments in three parts: one-third upfront (as a deposit), one-third halfway through, and the final one-third after completion.
5.) Protect yourself from subcontractors and suppliers. Add a clause in your contract requiring the contractor to pay all subcontractors and suppliers prior to final payment. Otherwise, those companies or individuals may come after you (the homeowner) for payment and put a lien on your house, Hutt warns.
If you need assistance finding a home maintenance pro, please contact the Nate Martinez Team and we’ll be happy to provide you a referral from our recommended vendor list.
Nate Martinez, RE/MAX Professionals
Connect with us on YouTube
Connect with us on Facebook
Connect with us on Twitter
Connect with us on Instagram