A home improvement or construction project run by a general contractor is a major undertaking. That’s why you need the knowledge and professionalism of Virginia general contractors to get the job done. But the most important work the homeowner does is actually the first step. Hiring your contractor deserves all of your time and attention in order to ensure the best choice is made.
Determine What You Need
Think about your own personality, the make up of your family and the scope of your project. What type of contractor will be the best fit? Are you looking for a general contractor that specializes in home additions tailored to a particular historical period? Or will you need a full service firm that can take care of every aspect for you from the design to the finishing touches?
Whatever type of service you’re looking for and whatever size of project you had in mind, there is a general contractor in Virginia ready and willing to help you out. By knowing what you need ahead of time you can weed out those who are unable to meet your expectations.
Take the Time To Search
The best Virginia general contractors will not show up on your doorstep; you need to go out looking for them. This process involves asking your friends, family and coworkers and gathering a list of names. From that point you can begin your preliminary investigations.
Use the Internet to have a look at the portfolio of a contractor before you give him a call. If their past work seems to be in line with what you need and you can easily navigate their site to find relevant information, it’s time to give them a call. Alternatively, you can also visit their office for some initial information, but the contractor will almost always need to see the site before submitting a fair bid. Even if your site is simply an empty lot, the access, soil conditions and current level of grading will make a difference.
It’s a great idea to start with a list of questions for the potential candidates. You may be able to get this information from their website, but have them confirm the information on the phone if possible.
Some possible questions include:
- How long have you been in business?
- Can you provide current references?
- Are you a member of any builder’s associations?
- Does your staff have professional qualifications (professional engineer, plumber, electrician, etc.)?
- What are your payment terms and do you get involved in financing arrangements with the bank?
- What kind of warranties do you offer?
- How is your schedule for completion of this size of project?
You can add to the list with questions targeted at your specific project. And make a note of each contractor’s answers. This will help you more accurately compare each of the firms before they even submit a quote.
Although price will be a major point of difference between each contractor, it’s the legwork done ahead of time that will ensure you have professional, experienced Virginia general contractors quoting on your job. By knowing what you need and asking important questions you will be well on your way to making the best choice.