We have all heard the horror stories of a bad contractor. The latest I heard was a family that hired a general contractor to build their dream home. They gave him thousands (!!) of dollars up front. They weren’t currently living near the building site so it wasn’t something they came to check up on, they just took his word for the things that were getting done. BIG MISTAKE. Eventually they came several months later to check on the project…And they came to learn they were totally ripped off. The contractor had not pulled any permits, the framing had been done- and nothing was square. And of course the contractor was no where to be found and he had screwed them out of nearly their whole budget for the house. They had nothing but a frame to show for all the money they had given him. I felt total heartbreak hearing my friend tell me this of this family who’s home was being built behind her.
There are several ways to ensure nothing like this ever happens to you. 1) talk to your friends. Ask them who they have used. 2) if you hire someone you just looked up, ask for several references. 3) Always check up on them. Yes you have hired a general contractor to do this for you, but when it comes down to it, it’s your house and it’s your money. You have to take some responsibility.
In today’s world we go to the Internet for everything. And shopping for a contractor on the Internet is now a possibility. There are several sites that can help you with this. If you don’t have knowledge of the industry or any recommendations from anyone, these sites can be really helpful.
One I recently stumbled upon was SmartReno. Here’s what peaked my interest about this site/company:
- They find the contractor for you, based on your metro area and the project description you’ve submitted.
- They gather the bids for you from several contractors so that you can compare
- if you have a complaint or dispute with one of their contractors, they will serve as the mediator and help resolve the issue- huge stress relief you aren’t alone!
The contractors are only on here if approved by SmartReno, if the contractor is not fulfilling projects and/or getting several complaints, SmartReno won’t refer them.
So how do you work this service into your budget? You don’t, because it’s free.
I’m all about the one stop shopping. And I like that you can search for anything from a masonry to landscaping to a general contractor on this site. There is a lot of peace of mind in the fact that the contractor is held accountable by this company. This site is certainly worth looking into if you are having trouble finding a contractor to do a project or simply need more options to compare prices. You can never do too much research when looking for a contractor to do a project on your home. And this site does the search for you!
Now I’m off to get my GC (Kyle!) to get some work done. Otherwise I will have lots of complaints to submit.