5 Red Flags to Look For Before Hiring a Remodeling Contractor

Be Aware of the Signs of Potential Problems

Your roots are in Kansas City. Your home is the spot where you’ve grown your biggest investments, emotionally and financially.

When you take on remodeling jobs to increase your house’s value or to put your own personal touch on it, it’s enormously reassuring to rely on the support and experience of a qualified contractor to get the project done right.  

Unfortunately, not all working contractors are qualified to do the job. When you’re looking at potential contractors, here are some red flags that should warn you to choose someone else.

1. Unwilling to Commit or Put Things in Writing

If the contractor in question is reluctant to commit to a timeline or budget or even to put any commitments in writing, you should walk away.

Those are signs that the contractor is inexperienced and isn’t able to properly estimate the time or money needed to get a job done. In choosing them, you run the risk of going over budget or misjudging a project timeline, which can have other implications.

It’s also possible that the contractor is juggling multiple jobs and can’t say for sure what the scheduling might be. That means that you won’t necessarily be the contractor’s priority.

2. Large Down Payment

It’s normal for contractors to ask for a deposit when starting a job, but it’s also normal to work out a mutually agreed upon payment schedule over the duration of the project. If the contractor wants a sizeable down payment at the outset, this could signal that he’s got cash flow problems, which could become your problem too.

3. Bad Reviews

It’s common knowledge that consumers consult reviews before doing just about anything. It’s not unusual to see a bad review here and there for different products and services (after all, every person has different tastes and expectations).

However, if you see repeated comments and complaints about similar issues, especially concerning budget, work hours, professionalism, or adhering to timeline, don’t hire the contractor.

It’s a good idea to check with the local Better Business Bureau as well.

4. No Permits

If your contractor doesn’t have a history of using permits, that is a problem. Doing permitted work not only ensures the quality of the job, but it also ensures that it meets the necessary safety and structural criteria. Permits protect you and the contractor, so if your contractor doesn’t use permits, walk away.

You could be responsible for extra costs and fines or even be liable for damages down the road.  

5. Always Late

A contractor who doesn’t respect your schedule and shows up late all the time isn’t committed to finishing the job on time. Similarly, they aren’t showing respect for you or your home.

Remember, you and your home deserve to be treated with respect and dignity. Do your due diligence when looking for a contractor.