7 Factors to Consider When Hiring Construction Companies

portrait of a male building contractor with hard hat

Are you considering building a home or commercial building or adding an extra feature to your existing dwelling? 

You're not alone. During 2020 the number of Google searches relating to home improvements has doubled when compared to last year.

However, unless you're a DIY pro, it's best not to go it alone with these types of advanced construction projects. It's far safer to hire an experienced construction company for major building alterations. 

These are the main considerations when you're looking at hiring construction companies for your home improvement projects. 

1. Hire a Local Contractor

Hiring local's the right thing to do, but it also makes things a lot easier. A local contractor's familiar with the weather conditions, building codes, and other quirks of your neighborhood.

You also won't have to pay any extra hidden costs for travel and transportation when your construction professional's based nearby. 

When you hire locals, it's also easier to check whether they're licensed to operate in your area, see examples of their work around town, and chat with some of their previous clients.

2. Research References and Reviews

Some construction companies are very forthcoming with this information, for example, Witte Construction has both customer and employee reviews on their website. Other construction professionals might not be as eager to share their information.

That doesn't mean they're a bad company, it's just a little more work for you. You can look at websites like the Better Business Bureau for reviews and ratings or ask around your neighborhood for references. 

Don't let one or two negative reports put you off. What's important is that the contractor responded to and resolved the issue to everyone's satisfaction.

3. Check the Paperwork

Licenses and reviews aren't the only things you need to investigate.

Every contractor should have a legitimate workers' compensation program in place as well as legally-compliant occupational health and safety measures. If there's an incident on your property, you could be liable. 

Nowadays, it's especially important to take note of any extra sanitization and social-distancing protocols the contractor has in place.

If you can't find this information from other sources, ask the contractor to provide you with it. 

4. Consider Experience and Skills When Hiring Construction Companies

Managing a construction project is a highly complex process that requires a wide skill set. Numerous things can go wrong in the process. These types of hassles can cause delays and danger to your family and pets. 

For these reasons, make sure you consider only contractors who have many years of experience with construction. They'll know how to deal with these hiccups and keep things rolling along smoothly. 

Find out what types of construction projects the company specializes in and if they've completed any jobs similar to yours before. A company that specializes in commercial construction might not make a good fit for your residential project and vice versa. 

Often contractors may have a gallery of past projects on their website, so you can form an idea about their standards of workmanship. 

6. Arrange an Interview With the Construction Manager

Once you've narrowed down your list of possible construction companies to the cream of the crop in your area, it's time to get in touch. 

Call up the various companies and ask for a meeting. It's important to get an idea of their service levels and attitude towards customers before you consider working with them. 

Right from the outset, you should consider finer details like:

  • Did they answer the phone promptly or call you back right away?
  • Was the telephone operator courteous and attentive?
  • Were they eager to meet with you and discuss your project in detail?

When you get to talk to your contractor, ask them about all the above issues so you can check your information against what they tell you (sometimes online information's outdated).

It's also essential to find out who'll be working on your project. If they'll be using sub-contractors to complete your work, it's a good idea to meet with them too. 

If you're happy with the company's service, attitude, and credentials, you can ask them to provide you with a quotation for the job at hand. 

The best contractors will ask to visit your premises and see your plans before they offer to provide an estimate of costs. 

7. Compare Construction Companies Costs

Comparing construction fees is the final and most important step before you sign up with a construction professional. 

Go through each line item and question anything that you don't understand and be sure to ask about incidental or extra costs that you could incur throughout the project.

Remember to ask about what happens in the event rain delays your construction as well as their payment terms. While it's standard practice for smaller companies to ask for a deposit upfront to cover their materials, you should never pay any contractor in full before they've completed your job. 

Don't simply accept the cheapest price. Often a more expensive estimate may include extras like better quality materials, guarantees, or after-sales service and repairs. 

A clear understanding of what you're paying for is the best way to avoid miscommunications and disappointment when it comes to construction projects. 

Do You Have More Questions?

Hiring construction companies may not be something you do every day, but you'll be glad you read this article when you need to. 

Perhaps you'll end up building your dream home one day, or consider doing alterations to your existing one. Either way, now you're prepared to find the best construction company for your needs. 

Keep browsing our website for more tips on how to do things safely and cost-effectively in every area of your life. 


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