Homeownership comes with a lot of responsibility and unique tasks you may have never completed before. You can’t go wrong by hiring a general contractor to help with home improvement projects like remodeling or repairing damage from a storm.
When hiring an 8A general contractor, it’s important to make sure they provide top-notch customer service. Ask questions about their expertise, quality of work, and customer service history. It’s also important to check that they produce high-quality results that meet your expectations. Checking reviews from previous customers can give you peace of mind knowing that other people have had positive experiences with the contractor.
By knowing what to look for and asking the right questions, you can be sure that you’ll get the best quality work for your home construction project.
10 Things to Look For in a Contractor
An 8A general contractor is a contractor who is certified as 8A by the Small Business Administration. This certification means that the contractor has met specific requirements in terms of management, staff, and finances.
Hiring an experienced 8A general contractor is a great way to make sure your home improvement project runs smoothly. Asking these given key questions will help you find the right contractor for your needs.
1. Licensing and Certification
If you’re on the hunt for a contractor, be sure to choose one who is licensed in your state. This means they’ve met the qualifications required by the state government.
In addition, if you’re planning to sell your home in the future, having work done by an unlicensed contractor could complicate things since their work isn’t usually recognized during real estate transactions.
Most states’ Department of Labor websites have lists of licensed contractors available; for example, here’s where you can find Maryland license holders.
2. Quality of Work
An 8A general contractor should be held to the highest standards of craftsmanship and quality in order to stay certified by their governing body.
Ask for pictures and reviews from clients that attest to the contractor’s attention to detail and high-quality workmanship.
Ask your potential 8A contractor questions about their experience to ensure they are capable of handling your project. Some important inquiries include:
How long the business has been running, the monthly number of projects taken on, and if there are any references from past clients. It never hurts to ask for additional reassurance in the form of reviews and portfolio examples from other previous customers.
This way, you can get an accurate idea of not only their level of skill but also what working with them will be like.
4. Insurance and Bonding
Look for an 8A general contractor that carries proper insurance and bonding so that you are protected should something go wrong during the project. This will also ensure that your contractor is financially responsible if any injury or damage occurs on the job.
5. References and a Positive Reputation
If a company has positive customer reviews and references, it’s likely that they have done extensive work and their customers were satisfied with the results. Be cautious of companies who have “too perfect” of a reputation, though.
For example, if they claim to have a 100% satisfaction rate, this could be suspicious and mean that their reviews are not from real customers.
6. Steady and Trained Staff and Crew
Always feel free to inquire about how long a business has been established or how long an employee has worked for the corporation. A lengthy work history can illustrate that the company is well-trusted by both customers and employees alike. Furthermore, it’s important to ask about what kind of licenses or specialized training the company or individual possesses.
7. Turnaround Time
The time it takes for a company to complete your project is also reflective of the quality of work you can expect. If the timeline is too short, that may be an indication that the company prioritizes speed over quality.
And if the completion date seems much different from what other contractors are saying, that could be cause for concern. Keep in mind that during busier seasons (like after severe weather events), the turn-around time for a standard asphalt roof replacement could take up to 4 weeks.
Many people believe that the price is the most important factor to consider when looking for a contractor, but this isn’t always the case. You don’t want to choose the cheapest or most expensive option — usually, a middle-of-the-road choice is best.
When contractors’ prices seem too good to be true, they often are. In addition, it’s crucial to make sure you’re comparing “apples to apples” when assessing pricing quotes; otherwise, you could end up inadvertently paying more than necessary. For example, using different manufacturers’ shingles will affect costs in varying ways.
9. Material Suppliers
Checking in with a contractor’s material suppliers is an excellent way to get peace of mind about hiring them. If the company has built good relationships and gets frequent orders from its suppliers, it’s likely they’re reliable and will be easy to work with.
An experienced 8A general contractor should have excellent communication skills. They should be willing to answer questions and explain the process every step of the way. Make sure you feel comfortable talking to the contractor before hiring them for the job.
Want to Work With an Experienced 8A-Contractor?
If you’re in need of a reliable 8A general contractor for your next project, look no further than Valet Works. Our team of experienced and licensed contractors have the skills and expertise to handle any job — big or small. We guarantee quality workmanship, fast turnaround times, and competitive pricing. Contact us today to get started!