Renovation Red Flags – Watch Out for These Renovation No-No’s
CBC News in New Brunswick recently explored how home owners could best protect themselves when embarking upon new renovation adventures. Not all contractors are alike – and this is where having a Realtor® you can trust is a god-send.
Its often forgotten, but your Realtor® can provide you so much more value than just their assistance in buying or selling your home. Working in this profession allows them to rub elbows daily with hundreds of contractors, handymen, and other service professionals. Stay in the game long enough and you start to learn who has a reputation for outstanding service and value, and who you should avoid.
When things go wrong in a home renovation, you’re not just out time and the convince of a clutter free house, it can end up costing you thousands of dollars in repairs to have the work completed correctly.
Always source quotes from multiple locations. If you find a professional or firm you would prefer to do business with (based on additional research, we’ll get to that soon!), ask them if there is room to negotiate their fees to align with their competitor’s pricing. Remember that if the pricing seems to good to be true, it likely is.
DO YOUR HOMEWORK
Before hiring a contractor or other service professional, take the time to research them. Read their website, find google reviews, check out their rating with the Better Business Bureau. Pay attention to the negative comments out there. Every business will have its critics – so remember to take these with a grain of salt. But if the same problem types of problems or complaints are mentioned across various platforms it’s a good indicator to keep looking.
Make sure that they are registered with the province, provide a warranty for the work completed, and carry liability insurance.
Ask them for referrals – and make the calls to follow up. A little bit of work on your end ahead of time can save you pain down the road. Don’t just ask for referrals from recent work, but also projects from the last 2-3 years. These clients will be able to tell you how their work stands the test of time.
GET IT IN WRITING
Once you’ve chosen who you’re going to be working with get the details of the agreement in writing – this will give you a basis to fall back on should standards and timelines fail to be adhered to.
If all this sounds like a lot of work, don’t fall victim of the DIY fix. According to the National Association of Realtors, a recent survey reported homeowners hoped to save at least 60% in costs by foregoing the assistance of a professional. Of those, a third admit to having to hire a professional after the fact to redo the work. Professional tradesmen do outstanding work – we’re simply reminding you that to make the most of your dollar, a little bit of work upfront can save you tears down the road.
Remember to trust your gut. If it seems fishy … that’s because it just might be.
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