If you are a New Yorker, you probably know how difficult it is to find a competent home improvement contractor. Many people search on Google with the keyword “How to find a good contractor in NYC.” Do they succeed in finding a reliable contractor? Some do and some don’t.
In this article, I will lay down tips on how to find a good contractor in NYC. So keep reading.
Create an outline first
The reason hidden cost always pokes its ugly head is customers don’t sketch a comprehensive outline of what they expect from the contractor beforehand. Many are guilty of this. They hire a contractor without having a vision of what kind of modifications they want. As the work progresses, they feel dissatisfied with it and instruct the contractor to make changes. The contractor then charges them extra for revising the original plan. This is how the cost keeps going up.
Fraser Patterson, the CEO of a home remodeling project cost comparing site called Bolster explained the benefit of having a preplan by saying “When you have a better idea, you will be able to communicate it better. You’ll also feel more confident talking to contractors.” Poor communication leads subpar work. Want to avoid that? Then make a plan first and then hire a contractor.
Talk to professionals
Making a plan all alone sounds like a daunting task. If you haven’t done it before, I suggest you hire an interior designing agency. Hiring one may add cost to your initial estimation but it saves you from future troubles. There are two ways hiring a professional can benefit you.
- Their sketch can render what you originally envisioned. You can see how it looks and if you need any change, they can seamlessly bring it.
- You can decide whether you need a general contractor or an architect. The contractor’s work also becomes far easier when there’s a professionally created outline guiding him.
Bear in mind that many people hired contractors without professionally crafted outline of the remodeling work. They later regretted their decision. If you don’t want to be one of those people, talk to a professional today.
Be rational with money
Listen to your money. Don’t spend it unwisely. It’s best if you make a budget. Let’s say you hire an architect but the cost of hiring him exceeds your budget. This imaginary scenario is a proof that having a budget allows you to quantify how much you are spending extra.
The problem with cost calculation is chiefly due to the fact that anticipating the potential remodeling cost is always difficult. An expert remarked “Unlike almost every other purchase on the planet, there isn’t really a way to window shop to figure out your price range for renovating.” Due to this, people end up paying way more than what they originally thought they’d have to pay. The same expert offered a solution “So, the first thing you need to do is think about how much money you can put toward your renovation, because your budget will largely dictate the quality of materials you can buy and the level of labor you can afford.” Along with this, you should have realistic expectations and don’t stress the contractor too much, for changes that were never there in the original plan.
Referrals and customer feedback
To know how to find a good contractor in NYC, you first need to get an objective idea of who qualifies as a good contractor. A good contractor is one who is referred by other people, preferably by your neighbors, friends and acquaintances. If they refer you to a particular contractor, chances are that he can handle the renovation or remodeling work.
Feedback from previous customers is as important as referrals. It gives you an idea of whether the contractor is eligible for being hired. If past customers were happy with his work and professionalism, you’d be too. The timeline of the contractor’s last assignment is very important. If his last job was several years ago, you are better off not hiring him as someone who remains jobless for a significant period of time, does so for a reason.
If you are hiring someone on your own, don’t hesitate to ask them for reference. You should be straightforward when making hiring decision.
Compare quotes from contractors
While you should be straightforward, don’t be hasty. Don’t rush to hiring one. Take time. I advise you to consult at least four contractors before you hire one. NYC has no shortage of experienced and capable contractors. Ask them for their quotes and compare these quotes. However, don’t go for the one that’s offering service at a reduced cost. Make sure that he ticks other check boxes.
You can find a good contractor in NYC. But for that, you first need to run a screening process. The tips shared here helps you run this process. The one who finally gets selected will be capable enough to handle the home remodeling job for you. And you’ll find his quote affordable.