Remodeling seems to be an inborn tendency. Frequently it seems that the urge gets delayed until the homeowner starts thinking about selling. “Why didn’t I get around to doing this earlier?” Regardless of whether you are doing the work for your own purposes or to prepare for sale, though, you still need to make the wisest use of your money.
Owning a home is a big business. If you are not cautious, you could over-invest. A project might be for just a single room, a patio or porch, or the entire house. No matter what size the project is, getting a quality contractor is key to getting a good job accomplished at a fair price. There are, however, some pitfalls that you have to be aware of.
The Federal Trade Commission says that homeowners should watch out for the tricks of so-called contractors, architects, and designers. The FTC lists these signals that your contractor might be running a con:
* Just happens to have extra material from another job
* Wants full payment up front
* Insists on the need for a quick decision
* Offers a discounted price for referring customers
* Requires cash
* Has to ask you to apply for the necessary building permits
Any of those could be a sign that you should walk away. Sometimes these con artists will try to get you to borrow the money for the job through a company that they just happen to know. At its worst, a loan scam could literally put you out of house and home.
There are several key steps that you have to take to avoid being taken advantage of. Interview your potential contractors carefully. Ask about the length of time they have been in business, their license details, and insurance. Check with your building office to find out about permit laws. These steps are just like the normal steps you usually take for any important purchase or transaction.
Another very important thing to do is to ask for recent business references. Not only should you get a list, but you should follow up. Ask them about the quality of the work and service.
Payment terms must be clear before the job is started. In some localities there are limits on how much higher the final cost can be in relation to the estimated amount. Check into the laws where your work will be done. As a final consideration, don’t pay until completion of the work.
Article presented by the Colorado real estate specialists at Automated Homefinder.