Contractors are the worst.
No, really, just the worst.
Never showing up on time, taking your money and disappearing for days or weeks at a time, telling YOU what YOU want in your home, and God forbid they answer their phone or respond to a text. Why even bother paying your cell phone bill, Mr. Contractor? Just go throw your money in the Boise River.
While the shoe doesn't fit every contractor, the industry is famous for this kind of lack of professional rigor for a reason-- there are simply a lot of terrible contractors out there. Guys who are actually pretty good at pouring concrete, framing houses, or (insert trade here) often do not also possess the kind of business acumen that translates into well run projects characterized by strong communication and timely execution. Or that come in on-budget.
So, how do you avoid getting into business with a sub-standard contractor that could spell disaster for your project and possibly even put you and your bank account at risk?
Here are a few good rules of thumb:
1. Put Your Contractor to the Test
Always ask a contractor to get back to you by a certain time. Schedule a meeting for a few days out. Send them a few texts or give them a call, then wait for them to return them. A good contractor will be responsive, show up on time, and/or get back to you pretty quickly. Remember, if they aren't working very hard to get your business, how hard will they work once they have your money and a signature on a contract?
2. Look Up their Credentials
Are they licensed? Do they have insurance? Are their workers payroll employees or 1099 contractors?
All of these things matter.
A legit contractor with payroll employees will have more insurance premiums than they care to think about. In the State of Idaho, there are at least four different kinds of insurance a legit contractor needs to have to make sure everyone (themselves, employees, and customers) are protected.
An unlicensed guy paying his employees in cash will not be insured. Guess who is on the hook if a worker breaks a leg or falls off a roof during the course of a project? A serious accident during the course of project handled by an unqualified contractor can bankrupt a homeowner.
3. Do Your Research
In the Internet Age, it should not be very difficult to find information about potential contractors. Check out their website, ask for references, see if are Better Business Bureau accredited, look on Homeadvisor to see if they are rated.
Quality contractors will have a footprint, in some way, shape, or form.
4. You Get What You Pay For
Being a high quality contractor is not cheap. You have insurance, taxes, marketing, and payroll expenses to worry about. There are vendors and quality subcontractors that have to be paid in a timely manner. Contractors that skimp on these things also cut corners on the materials and techniques they use to complete projects.
It can be easy to be seduced by a low bid, but oftentimes those bids end up costing a whole lot more than the median or high bid. Contractors with lowball bids often disappear partway through projects, do shoddy work, or start asking for more money somewhere along the line.
The bottom line is that the construction business is a very disjointed business. A lot of mom & pop-style businesses that are run by guys that all do things differently. There really isn't aren't uniform standards, nor is there a lot of recourse for people that have been burnt by bad contractors.
Boise Concrete and Construction prides itself in being one of the valley's highest quality contractors. Offering excellent products backed by high quality customer service, top-notch ratings, and all the insurance one can imagine.
Call us today to set up your free estimate.