Responsiveness, a detailed quotation, and adherence to a proposed work schedule are three key expectations that you should have when you hire a home improvement contractor. A contractor’s failure to provide any of these three items is a red flag that you should not ignore. Below is a detailed look at each of these expectations and why all three of them are important to consider as you evaluate potential contractors.
The Importance of a Detailed Quotation
A quotation serves as a roadmap for the completion of your home improvement project. As you meet with potential contractors, it is critical that you receive a detailed quotation that outlines the costs, labor, and time associated with your project. You should expect your quotation to include the following pieces of information:
- The projected cost of your project, including labor and materials
- An estimated time frame or proposed schedule for completion of the project
- Any stipulations (for instance, the inability to work on weekends)
- Special equipment required for the project, and any additional costs associated with this equipment
- An expiration date for the pricing referenced in the quotation
Resist the urge to accept a verbal quotation in person or over the telephone, as you will have nothing in writing to fall back on if a discrepancy arises between you and your contractor. As you evaluate quotes, remember to build in a little extra time for unexpected delays or obstacles that may arise during your project.
Why Responsiveness is a Critical Expectation
Responsiveness is crucial to your satisfaction with a contractor. Specifically, your contractor should strive to respond to your telephone calls and questions as quickly as possible. Below are some key ways for contractors to demonstrate their responsiveness:
- Send quotations on or before the date they are promised to the customer
- Arrive on time or early for meetings with you
- Make every effort to respond to texts and phone calls within an hour
- Check and respond to e-mail at least once each day
A good way to evaluate responsiveness is to request references from each potential contractor and contact those references. Ask specific questions about the contractor’s level of responsiveness and whether concerns were addressed quickly.
How Adherence to a Proposed Schedule Benefits Both You and Your Contractor
After your home improvement project is underway, a contractor should make every effort to avoid running behind schedule. If any unexpected delays arise, a contractor should notify you immediately. By striving to be efficient and by following the proposed timeline referenced in your quotation, a contractor solidifies his or her reliability as a contractor. Additionally, both you and the contractor are able to move forward with business as planned.
Selecting the Best Contractor to Complete Your Project
The contractor that you choose should possess the experience, professionalism, and license required to successfully complete your project. Contractors with over a decade of industry experience are typically the best choices because they have accumulated the tools and resources required to exceed your expectations on every project. Be sure to request references from each contractor you consider to ensure that you select a contractor who will deliver the outstanding results that you deserve for your home improvement.