It’s hard to find the right fit when it comes to a general contractor. You want someone who is tough enough to get the job done, but someone who can listen to what you want and come up with creative solutions. If you end up with someone not able to listen you will never end up getting what you want. On the other hand if you pick someone who isn’t tough enough to do the project who is just artistic, it will never get done. Here are my sure fire tips to finding the right contractor for you and your business.
1. Do they listen to your ideas?
Ever feel like you are never heard? You are paying to much money not to be. If they don’t listen at the beginning, they won’t listen at the end. Run for it and don’t look back!
2. Are they organized?
Have you seen many contractor trucks? Some are full of trash and stuff stacked a mile high. I’m not talking about the truck needing a wash. Every contractor could use that. I’m talking about the inside. Is it neat? This is your future. If the truck is a wreck on the inside so will your job be messy and unorganized.
3. Are they personable and friendly?
This may be the most important. If you don’t enjoy doing the project with the person your doing business with why do it? It is a shame to do business and be miserable. Do business with likable people because construction gets stressful. Things come up no one foresees . If you don’t like them it just goes bad from there.
4. Are they creative?
We all need a little value engineering. Who doesn’t want to save money? Here’s the deal. The more creative the contractor, the more money you can save. Value engineering is about thinking outside the box and coming up with great substitutions, ideas, and ways around problems. This is what separates the good from the great contractor.
5. Did you get a schedule?
I have no idea why contractors have a job without a schedule. You have to know where you are at all times with the project. If you don’t have anything to measure against you have no idea. In the end you plan to fail by failing to plan.
6. Do they have the right kind of supervision?
Do they have people on site all the time or part of the time? How much supervision does your project require? Make sure they answer these questions and get to know the project manager before the job starts if possible. The owner could be great with a cruddy employee who doesn’t do the above mentioned items.
7. Got paperwork?
One of the worst things about construction is all the paper work. I personally hate it so I hired someone to do it. A lot of people feel the same way, but during the job not having paperwork is a bad thing. How much was the change order? What are the specks on this finish or that? Millions of these questions and more go through the paperwork. As bad as it is it must be done. Do they have a tried and true method for the paperwork? What will you get at the end of the job? If you don’t get a book telling you what everything is and how to clean it and where you can order more, you need the paperwork and you’re not getting it.