Do a Google search for contractors and your city, and you’ll come with thousands of listings. But buyer beware – just because someone calls himself or herself a contractor, doesn’t mean that he or she is a true professional .In order to choose the right contractor for a project, you need to get as much information as possible about the contractor before hiring them. Treat the process the same way you would buying a home or shopping for the best mortgage – you want to find out all the details you can since renovations and construction are big ticket items.
A major consideration for hiring a contractor should be if they are licensed or not. There are several reasons why a homeowner should go with a licensed contractor over a contractor who has no licenses. Contractors are licensed by the province where they live, and they become licensed by completing a number of training and continuing education courses as mandated by their particular province. By going through the licensing process, licensed contractors show they are invested in their industry and care about their customers. Licensed contractors are up to date on the latest codes which ensure safe workmanship.
A further consideration is what type of insurance your contractor carries. Often contractors will carry insurance, mainly liability (in the case of damage to a client’s property) and workers’ compensation (in case one of their employees ever gets injured on the job). It’s important to note that most homeowner’s insurance policies will not cover accidents or errors that happen due to the negligence of a construction company or someone working on a homeowner’s house. Always ask about your contractor’s insurance coverage as well as check with your own home insurance company to ensure you have adequate coverage.
Something else to think about is whether or not you want to employ individual licensed contractors yourself or hire a general contractor who will deal with all of the other licensed trades on your behalf. General contractors can often save you money on your project because they have a network of specialized trades that they work with regularly such as welders, framers plumbers and electricians. This means that you as a homeowner will have to hire fewer contractors. Doing your homework ahead of time will help save you stress and money, and ensure that you get the job done to your satisfaction.