How to Select a General Contractor Selecting a general contractor is a big commitment. They will be the leader to ensure that your hopes and dreams for your building are met. Not only do you want someone to make the building of your dreams, but you also need someone that will do it in a timely and cost efficient manner. Is this an impossible task? No, but you will need to do your homework. In order to make a good choice, you need to put in the time and effort to ensure you get a winner. Below are some tips to help you find a great general contractor that you can trust.
Ask for Referrals You can’t underestimate the referral of someone you trust. Do you know someone who recently underwent a building project in Utah area? Ask them which general contractor they chose and why; also, don’t forget to ask who else they looked at, but didn’t select and why. These questions could not only lead you to your general contractor, but also save you time and effort to avoid investigating a contractor that should be avoided. If you don’t know anyone personally who has undergone a building project, consider visiting local home improvement store. Ask employees what contractors frequent the store, buy quality materials, and pay their bills on time. Be sure to visit multiple stores in various locations. Most general contractors will work with a wide area of major cities. For example a general contractor based in Salt Lake City could be found working as far as Spanish Fork, Utah, or even further.
Pick up the Phone Once you have a working list of potential contractors, be sure to conduct phone interviews to determine the best match for your project. Asking thoughtful questions will help you gain an understanding of the general contractor’s availability, reliability, and attention they will be able to give to your project.
It’s Time to Meet Once you’ve narrowed your list down to a couple contractors in the greater Salt Lake City area, it’s time to meet them. The contractor you choose will be on site for hours at a time—you should be comfortable with that person.
Look at the Facts Now is the time to call up or visit previous clients to determine how pleased they are with the final product. It may also be a good idea to visit a current job site in the greater Salt Lake City area to get an idea of what a “work in progress” looks like for each contractor.
Make Plans and Get a Bid With your list narrowed down even more, it’s time to focus on your project. Call those on the top of your list to get a bid on your project.
Payment Schedule Finding out how the general contractor wants to be paid can also be telling. If they want half upfront, they could be suffering from financial problems. Look for a payment schedule that allows you to voice your opinion throughout the process. For large projects, a schedule usually starts with 10 percent at contract signing, and various payments of percentages less than 25 percent evenly spaced over the duration of the project.
Choose Wisely The guiding principle should be who you feel most comfortable with. If you let price be your guide, instead of who you feel comfortable with, you may feel uneasy and could lead to even greater problems.
Put it in Writing Don’t pay any money or let them get started on the project until a contract has been finalized.