Your home should be a retreat from the hectic world outside. As your life changes, your home needs change as well. When it’s time to remodel your home, finding a quality contractor near you is your first step. There are a few simple things you can do to make certain you choose a qualified professional to handle your remodeling project.

Get Local Referrals

Your neighbors, friends, co-workers, and family can provide invaluable information about the best, and worst, contractors in your area. If you don’t know many people in the area, you could check online for customer reviews. Start with the contractor’s website and move on to independent review websites for a look at the average customer experience.

Check the Credentials

Professional contractors must have certain credentials. You should find out about the contractor’s qualifications before you sign a contract. For something as important as your home, only a qualified professional will do.

Start by checking the contractor’s website. You should find a listing of any state and local licenses held, along with any accommodations from professional associations. Check for any specific certifications they hold. You should be able to learn a lot about each contractor by going online or calling the office.

Also, you should make certain that your contractor is fully insured. That way, you will be protected if there is an accident during the work.

Ask for References

Once you narrow your search to the professional contractors, ask each one for local references. When you speak to former customers, be sure to ask some basic questions. You will want to know how well the contractor performed on the job. Key questions include the timeliness of the project, how well the budget was followed, did they like the results, and would you have preferred something had been done differently?

It’s crucial that you do all you can to find out about the quality of work a contractor is able to provide. That way, you won’t be surprised by this later.

Experience

Your home is probably your most valuable property. You deserve an experienced contractor guiding your remodeling job. There are some lessons that can only be learned on the job. These lessons take time. The more years of experience your contractor has, the more situations they have seen during a project. An experienced contractor will be able to handle any circumstance that occurs during a remodel, where one that is new to the work will likely be at a loss.

Your contractor should have a permanent address, a business phone, cell phone, email address, and fax number, so you can reach them easily.

Tell Them You Need It in Writing

After you choose your contractor, take the time to check the contract and all other documents very closely. Make sure you understand everything that is stipulated in the contract. If you don’t, ask to have it explained until you do.

Among the things that should be included are a price bid, payment schedule, specific info about the work itself, site plan, schedule of main construction tasks, and an express limited warranty. You should have a change-order clause included, along with a clause regarding resolution of any disputes. There should be a written list for close-out and a waiver of lien.

With a little research, you can make sure that you hire a qualified contractor that can give you the high-quality remodel you deserve.