Here at ASD, our well-informed clients are our best clients. Read on to learn what questions to ask when hiring a remodeling contractor.
It’s incredibly important to hire the right contractor. You’re putting your family home in the hands of another person. Of course, not everything goes perfectly with every renovation. But the more informed you are the easier it is to get the job done right.
Luckily, if you hire the right contractor, your project will move along smoothly. Unfortunately, hiring the wrong professional can mean personal and financial catastrophe. Renovations are challenging enough. Add shoddy labor and unethical business practices and you’ve got a recipe for disaster. Being in this business for decades, we’ve heard the worst of these remodeling horror stories. Whether it’s unethical contractors, sketchy family members, or poorly done work, you don’t want your remodeling job to cause trouble.
To avoid a renovation horror story, you’ll need to hire a well-known company. Go with someone that’s trusted in your community and does quality work. Make sure your remodeling pro knows what he’s doing.
Below is our list of 5 questions to ask before you hire a remodeling contractor.
1. Are you licensed and insured?
Anything less than a resounding “Yes!” is unacceptable. Make sure to ask for copies of their insurance cards and business license.
Make sure they have workman’s comp insurance too. If they don’t, you’ll be on the hook for any personal injuries that happen during your remodeling project. If someone gets hurt on the job you don’t want to risk your personal assets. It’s your home we’re talking about.
And don’t take a contractor’s word for it. Look up their insurance companies yourself. Verify the contractor you’re considering is the one insured under the given policies. Double-check that they’re licensed in your state.
Go the extra mile and look for complaints with the BBB (Better Business Bureau).
Or read their client reviews on Yelp, Angie's List or Houzz. It’s an easy way to spot a lemon.
2. What's your estimated price and timeframe for this project?
Both the cost and the time to complete a project are important. They give you insight into the contractor’s operation.
If the contractor says he can do it cheaply and tomorrow, that’s enough to raise your eyebrow. That said, if you can’t get on his calendar until next year and it’s triple your budget? Well, they’re telling you they don’t want the project. Time to move on.
You need to find a remodeler who can get the work done right, on time, and on budget.
3. How many jobs do you complete per day?
At ASD we only schedule one kitchen per day. And, sometimes, it takes two days to finish the installation. Any quality kitchen install takes 1-2 days. When you want a job done right, it’s important to hire someone who doesn’t cut corners.
4. Who will be my point of contact?
The person who comes to your house and gives you an estimate won’t always be the one supervising the job site. Some companies have entire sales teams that provide their in-home estimates. But the salespeople never actually go to the jobs.
5. What's the process for change orders?
Even the best-planned remodeling project is likely to have a change or two along the way. Sometimes structural issues come up after you’ve already started the job. A product is back-ordered. Severe weather causes delivery issues.
If anything like that happens, changes need to be made to the schedule, budget, or materials. Professional contractors will communicate these issues to you directly. You’ll be made aware of them through a written document called a “change order”. It’s an amendment to the original contract that details prices, timelines, and scope of work. You should not only sign off on the original contract but any change orders as well.
Make sure you know who you need to reach out to in case of any questions or concerns. Remember to ask how to contact that point person.
Try to avoid “yes” or “no” questions. They’re too easy to answer. Instead of asking your contractor “Do you install granite?” ask “Which material do you suggest for this kitchen?” It gives them the chance to show their design expertise--or lack of it.
Want to get started?
When you’re interviewing remodeling kitchen & bath contractors, ask about more than price. You need to know about the company’s quality standards, design savvy, insurance, time frames, and management structure.
Ready to schedule your kitchen and bath remodel with Artistic Stone Design? Contact us to discuss your renovation plans today. We service the areas of Portland, OR and Seattle, WA. Remember, At ASD we always offer free estimates.
If you’ve been thinking about updating your home, or remodeling your kitchen and bath, the time is now. In this post, you’ll learn:
Why is remodeling important?
People have many different motivations for renovating their homes.
One of the most common reasons people remodel is to suit their lifestyle. It could be you have an outdated 1980s kitchen, and you’d like to live in the present moment. Maybe the previous owners were empty nesters with no dining space.
As the current owner, you'd love to gather the kids around an island for dinner.
Another incentive for remodeling is preparing your home for the market. Today’s buyers are demanding Pinterest-worthy spaces at every price point. A home with a renovated kitchen usually sells faster and for more money than one with a dated aesthetic.
Whatever your reason, summer is the season! There’s no better time to complete your kitchen and bath renovation. Read on to find out more about the advantages of remodeling in the sunny months ahead.
#1 - Finish your project in a week (or even less)
Refacing your cabinets is another way to makeover either your kitchen or bath fast. Instead of buying brand new cabinets, you can save big money just by refacing them. Switch out the doors and paint color for an instant, budget-friendly update. Kitchen cabinet refacing keeps costs down and allows for a quicker turnaround than installing new.
If you’ve been dreaming of a luxurious, mosaic tile shower that feels like a day spa, you’ll be happy to know that too is a project that can be finished in just a few days.
#2 - A summer remodel is easy for meal planning
Let’s face it. Being without an oven, sink, or stove can be one of the most annoying parts of the renovation process.
But, if you choose to remodel during the summer months, it’s grilling season. Fire up the grill, dine on the patio, and you won’t be wasting money on dining out while your kitchen gets its makeover.
It’s one of the easiest ways to lower your stress during remodeling.
#3 - You'll be able to hire the best contractors
When you’re choosing a kitchen and bath contractor, you’ll find designers, installers, and subcontractors are booked solid on large projects in the spring and fall. Generally, contractors are less busy in the summer months.
If you choose to remodel your kitchen or bath during the summer, you’ll have your pick among the best crews without having to wait for months to get on their schedule.
#4 - The kids are out of school
#5 - Opening the windows is not an issue
For any major kitchen or bath renovation, proper ventilation is key. No one wants construction dust and odors lingering once the crew is done for the day. Since it’s warmer and dryer in the summer months, you can air out your home without letting in cold, snow, or rain.
#6 - You're prepared for hosting duties
Too embarrassed to host Thanksgiving dinner?
You’ll be completely done with your renovation well before guests arrive.
You won’t need to panic when fall sneaks up on you.
#7 - You have the benefit of natural light
During those bright and sunny summer days, you can see clearly. Clear vision is helpful when choosing paint colors, stone, and hardware.
Summer is a great time to tackle indoor home improvement projects, such as a kitchen or bath remodel.
Ready to Get Started?
Are you ready to schedule your summer kitchen and bath remodel with ASD?
Contact us to discuss your renovation plans today. We service the areas of Portland, Vancouver, Seattle, and Tacoma. At ASD we offer free estimates.
Alex is a passionate owner of ASD that cares for his clients and their projects. He believes that building a great ASD team that also expresses that same passion and attention to detail create long-lasting relationships with our customers.