What should you look for when researching home renovation companies?

One of the most difficult aspects of having a home renovated is finding the right contractor for the job. There are many home renovation companies out there and not all of them are equal. It’s best to work with one company for the planning, designing, management, and labour. That way, the entire project will be organized.

You’ve probably heard horror stories of horrible contractors before. In order to prevent your own horror story from happening, you need to know what to look for in home renovation companies:

Basement Construction

  • As mentioned above, it’s best to work with one company that offers all of the services you need instead of hiring multiple people from different sources. However, you’ll still want to find out about a company’s hiring practices to make sure that only qualified and reliable contractors with experience working on your type of home will be taking care of the renovation.
  • Look over portfolios carefully. Do you like the styles of the homes? Does the interior design look like something you would like for your home? Does the company stick with certain type(s) of homes or is there diversity?
  • You can ask around, although keep in mind that you should still do your own research. Even if your neighbour swears that a renovator did an amazing job on their bathroom, that particular renovator might not be qualified to handle your own project. Go online and read about that renovator as well as others to find out if they would be ideal for you.
  • Make a list of everything you want before seeing estimates. Try to be as specific as possible with your plans, but leave room for flexibility. If you’re not sure which materials you want, the designer should give you some ideas.
  • Always look at credentials when researching home renovation companies. All of the contractors working for a company should have required licenses. Only work with a company that offers liability insurance for clients. You should be given a guarantee that there will be no hidden fees.
  • Poor communication is a deal-breaker. The company you work with should maintain a permanent phone number, address, email address, etc. They should be patient with you and willing to answer all of your questions. Send out a test email or make a test phone call. How long do you have to wait until somebody responds? Do they seem friendly and willing to answer all of your questions?
  • Don’t work with a contractor until you get all of the details in writing, from the payment schedule to a clause about how disputes will be resolved. Look over the document carefully. Scrutinize every sentence. It should be fair for BOTH sides. Be reasonable and understand that unexpected expenses may occur. Even the best renovation companies can’t foresee everything that might happen. Verify your insurance coverage as well. Get a copy of the renovation company’s insurance policy. Know what is covered by your contractor’s business insurance and your own homeowners insurance.

When doing research, check out the social media profiles of the home renovation companies you are interested in (Twitter, Facebook, Google+, etc.) You will also want to check out reviews and ratings to find out what others are saying.