April 6, 2023
After all the planning, now it’s finally time to pick your Home remodeling contractor in Chicagoland. It’s not an easy thing to give someone the authority to tear down your beautiful house. That’s why we have to analyze the contractor’s ability to rebuild to get the desired finish outcome.
If it is a basic thing to remodel like wall paint in your bedroom that can be even by you. If your house requires major remodeling then hiring a home improvement contractor is the way to go. How can you analyze the contractor’s ability to tell if it’s the right choice for handling your project?
Choosing a remodeling contractor in Chicagoland is just like hiring a new employee. So you don’t just go and hire the first applicant or the cheapest one. If you’re considering this, then we would suggest you stop. It’s best to narrow down the list of best candidates depending upon these traits: a portfolio of previous work, licensing, referrals, credibility, and competitive bid. We would suggest discussing your project plan with the potential candidate. Ask questions to see if he can provide useful insights to get maximum efficiency and cost-effectiveness. This way you will be able to analyze the commitment and experience of the contractor.
Anyhow, don’t just start dialing to get to the potential contractor. Simple things will make your quest easier and help you land the dream contractor to avoid disastrous outcomes at the finishing of the project.
Step #1: Get Recommendations About Remodeling Contractors in Chicagoland:
Ask your family or friends. Look around if someone you know has hired remodeling contractor in Chicagoland recently. The best way is to approach them to ask about their contractor. This will help you to gather important leads, and who knows you may get useful insights for your remodeling plan as well. Family, friends, and neighbors can be a great resource for these recommendations. Always prefer asking that person who you trust.
Don’t finalize yet. Keep your options open. The first thing you should do is create an 8-12 local contractors list who you think will make the work done efficiently. So your list should start by asking recommendations from those people around you who recently remodeled their house.
Step # 2: Read Reviews & Do Online Research About Remodeling Contractors in Chicagoland:
After you’ve gathered initial recommendations, it’s time to dig up the internet about your potential selection.
• Google “Type of Service + Your Area” to find potential contractors.
• Check out on google online business directories if your potential contractor is listed there. Read reviews.
• Check their online profile. I.e. Social Media, Google Reviews, etc.
To review what people are saying about their services? You can always ask their internet followers/reviewers about them.
Successful contractors have this one trait which makes them stand out from others. Like they make it easy to get in touch with them. You can access their portfolio, services, and reviews on their social media page, website, or customer service. So be cautious if you don’t find this information about some contractors online because they may be hiding something. So your list may have shrunk down a little bit at this moment.
Step # 3: Interview Remodeling Contractor from Chicagoland On the Phone:
After shrinking down your list, it’s time to do more in-depth research and get more intensive about reviews of your remaining options.
Update your list with contractors’ phone numbers and get in touch with them directly. Let them know about your remodeling project and ask them a few questions. Take 10-15 minutes to conduct this research, they would gladly help you. Don’t overdo it because you may appear an intruder resulting in wasting more time.
During your phone conversation, you can ask questions about their previous experience especially related to your remodeling project. It’s better to jot down the questions before getting on the call. This kind of question will get you enough information in your initial quest:
• How long have you been offering remodeling services?
• How many projects have you done so far?
• What makes you different from other contractors in this area?
• Will you be available during the time I want to carry out my remodeling project?
• How do you handle the legal process regarding contracts of your potential jobs?
All of these questions are important and they will help you decide about your contractor. Also, pay attention to the one who actually listens to what you say. It’s the hardest trait to find in contractors. Give more focus on the last questions to avoid future bitter clashes.
Step # 4: Licensing & Certifications:
One other to refine your list is to ask your contractors about licensing and certifications. It depends on the project what kind of certifications or licensing you to need from a contractor. Plus, legal requirements are different in every state. So the best way is to call the licensing department of your community to ask for the specific licensing requirements to carry out your project.
After making sure, contractors have the authorized licenses and certifications, also find out if anyone on your list has liability insurance in case they will damage your house.
The contractor itself and its workers should be covered by worker’s compensation. That’s why it’s important to check copies of insurance policies and make sure they are up to date. Don’t even try to consider who doesn’t have these necessary documents. If they are missing some credentials or hesitant to provide certain legal certifications, it’s best to cross them off your list.
Step # 5: Compare Portfolios & References:
The next step is to compare portfolios. You don’t want to prefer someone who only has done kitchen remodeling projects. That candidate may not be ideal for your bathroom remodeling. It’s true, a creative home improvement contractor can handle different kinds of projects well. Still, it’s better to go with that one who has done specialized projects. For example, if you’re thinking of decorating the entryway with a detailed mosaic, then it’s better to hire that contractor who does this kind of projects well. That’s why comparing portfolios is important. They will tell you a lot about contractors’ ability to carry out certain activities.
Gather portfolios from each contractor on your list, at least, containing last year’s projects. Portfolio can be in different forms i.e. physical one, or they may direct you to a website or online platform where they’ve gathered all the information with images. The most awesome thing, one can do is to provide, before, during, and after completion images. Plus, getting pictures of blueprints, or sketches will most certainly add more value to your decision-making approach.
Home Remodeling Contractors Only Include Their Best Work in Their Portfolios
One thing to be careful about is, meaning, if their best work is not enough to satisfy you then their average work will most certainly not. So ask contractors to add at least 10 references/previous customers with their contact details in the portfolio. Get in contact with these customers and ask them about the contractor’s ability to carry out required activities. Visit their home if you can, that will save you a lot of headaches in the future. Ask about these things from that homeowner about these home contractor’s abilities:
• Staying On Schedule
• Site Cleaning Measures
• Honest Communication
• Initial Bidding & Final Cost
Some things you can notice on your own while talking to previous customers. Like if they seem a bit hesitant about providing the information then it means their experience was not that great. If they had a wonderful experience then you’ll automatically notice via their body language. They’ll talk mostly positively about the contractor.
Step # 6: Get Bids & Hire a remodeling contractor from Chicagoland:
Now, you’ve crossed most of the options from your list. That’s a good thing. The next and final defining step will be the price of the project you can get from remaining contractors. After going through all the steps carefully, you can ask potential contractors to submit the estimated cost of the project (aka bid). A bid will be the sum of types of materials, labor cost, wastage consideration, and some profit for the contractor to offer its services. Your total project price will depend on the type of remodeling you looking for.
Ask a top-three selection of yours for submitting the price. Please don’t make the mistake by going with a low price bid. Yes, you can consider it but don’t compromise on the ability of the contractor. Besides the total price of the project can also differ because of the preference of the contractor to use a different type of materials.
For example, one contractor who prefers to use ready to assemble woodwork while the other one makes the wood items by hand. There will be a huge difference between the pricing and quality of these two approaches. So it is your place to decide what kind of final outcome you prefer. Consider the overall project while selecting the contractor.
After deciding on the bid, the remodeling contractor will draw a proposal containing, timelines, materials, cost, and miscellaneous things. After reviewing and accepting the proposal, the contractor will start the work according to decided timelines.
Let’s conclude this, don’t look for perfection. A missing thing in the portfolio may not mean a flaw in the contractor’s ability to deliver work. So also consider your gut feeling in the process as well.