Your home is one of the most expensive investments you’re going to make, so it makes sense to pick the right people to build it. From the architect, engineer, contractor, and designer, all these people play an essential role in building your dream home. With so many professionals to deal with, you have to choose the one who won’t put your resources to waste. Sadly, the construction industry is not spared from criminal activities involving service providers who charge high fees only to produce botched work.
The most overlooked yet critical part of a home construction project is the type of contractor you plan to hire. In their desperation to get their project started, many are tempted to hire a contractor or construction firm at short notice. But rushing the selection process can leave devastating effects on your home construction. Ideally, homeowners have to study the contractor’s licenses, academic background, construction experience, and previous projects before they can fully arrive at a decision. Some construction professionals even have to take a CSCS test—CSCS stands for Construction Skills Certification Scheme—to guarantee they have proper knowledge and training.
Given the many considerations of hiring a contractor, it’s crucial to identify the warning signs and red flags of a terrible contractor. After all, the last thing you want is to waste your time, money, and effort on someone who will give you nothing but headaches. With that in mind, here are the signs you’re hiring a bad contractor.
Lack of license, insurance, and registration
The first thing you should look for when hiring a contractor is to ask for their license. They should be able to present legal licenses or documented proof to handle construction work.
Never conduct a financial transaction or sign a written agreement if the contract did not provide their complete credentials. If they keep on stating excuses or avoiding inquiries about their legitimacy, it might be a warning sign that you’re dealing with a fake contractor.
Contractors are referred to as such simply because they enter a legal agreement to perform a construction job while meeting the demands specified in the agreement. If the contract forces you to start the project without drafting a contract or making a formal deal, it’s a sure sign they will bring nothing but trouble.
Construction agreements vary greatly, depending on the unit, time, materials, cost price, and lump sum. They’re also legally binding documents, so if a contractor or client violates any clause in the agreement, the affected party has the right to file a legal action.
Whether the construction project is for public, private, or commercial purposes, a contract is always a must-have.
Questionably low rates
Don’t just work with a contractor just because they have a cheaper quote than everyone else. More often, a cheap service charge means they can’t provide quality work according to construction standards. It’s also likely that they’re running a business around loopholes to evade legal restrictions.
The important rule is not to compromise quality work with affordability. But it doesn’t mean you need to hire a contractor who charges expensively; plenty of experienced contractors out there offer competitive prices.
Use the internet to search for skilled contractors around your area. For every contractor, make sure to ask for a complete quotation of their services. This will serve as your reference when comparing prices. Remember, a cheap contracting service may seem cost-effective in the beginning, but you’ll eventually spend more if they leave a lot of project issues once they’re done.
Makes excuses regularly
Communication is important when working with a construction professional. While contractors are very busy people, they should make time to coordinate with their clients to keep them updated about construction developments. With almost everyone owning a smartphone, it’s not an excuse for the lack of communication.
Contractors who keep making excuses are dangerous people to work with. An experienced contractor knows the importance of responsibility and accountability for their actions. If they keep disappearing during the most important times, then you’re likely dealing with a bad contractor.
The worst case you’ll encounter is hiring a contractor who never finishes the job after you have paid them in full. Although you have the power to sue the contractor, you’ll never gain back the resources and money they wasted.
Before hiring a contractor, do your research and know that not all contractors are honest and qualified. Some are out there pretending to be skilled contractors for the sake of taking their client’s money. Don’t be just another statistic. Remember our discussion above to ensure you meet the right professional for your construction project.