How to Trust Your Contractor: A Guide for Establishing Trust

Bob Lutz - DBS' Contractor and Remodeling Consultant

Remodeling your home can be a stressful undertaking, but learning how to trust your contractor can be even more challenging. From horror stories to no-shows, contractors have earned an unfavorable reputation, causing many homeowners to be hesitant about the remodeling process. However, there is hope! Good contractors do exist and learning how to trust them can be a straightforward process as long as you’re well equipped with the right information! By utilizing this guide below, you’ll be one step closer to finding the right contractor who can earn your trust!

Reviews, Reputation, & References – When you decide you’re finally ready to remodel your home, you’ll be excited about your new venture. But that excitement can quickly wear off when it comes to researching the right contractor. You’ll want to bear in mind the 3 R’s: Reviews, Reputation & References. First, read through their reviews; as many as you can find—read them all! From Google reviews to Yelp! and Houzz, be sure to read them all thoroughly. No two home remodels are the same, just like no two experiences are the same!

Next, do your research on their reputation. A good rule of thumb is to take note of their years in business and/or their years of experience. Additionally, having read through their reviews, you may pick-up on a common thread, such as clean, professional, or organized. Lastly, don’t be afraid to ask for references! Most reputable contractors will not hesitate to provide prospective clients with references—be sure to ask about recent references, too!

Interview – Once you’ve done your research, you’ll want to start interviewing contractors. We say interview, interview, interview—then interview some more! Don’t just interview three! Interview as many contractors as it takes until you’re happy and feel comfortable with them. Remember, if you’re not keen on them initially, you probably won’t be too happy with them throughout the duration of your project.

Visit our Education page to download the Top 10 Questions to Ask Your Contractor

License and Insurance – This one is simple, ask your contractor if they are licensed and fully insured. If they can’t provide you with proof, run!

Experience – When learning how to trust your contractor, being aware of their experience is important. Experience not only goes hand-in-hand with reputation but also greatly impacts your project. Just because they have framing experience doesn’t mean they have tiling experience. And, tiling experience, doesn’t always equate to having plumbing experience either. Be specific about gauging a potential contractor’s experience. Ask not only if they have experience in your project type, but how much experience they have with key areas of your remodel, such as tile, electrical, or installation. The last thing you’ll want to be is contractor’s guinea pig!

Communication – Throughout the construction industry does communication come up short. For many contractors, this is their pitfall. When establishing trust with your contractor, communicate and over-communicate with them. Want to know a surefire way to tell if a contractor is a good communicator? When you call them, do they answer? Further, do they return your call and, how long does it take for them to get back to you? Again, if you’re having to leave message after message, and email after email, chances are their communication isn’t up to par. Poor communication is a good indicator of a red flag. When communication fails, your project can be subject to mistakes & errors, which can get costly fast!

Be mindful of communication during the interview process, too! Remember, they aren’t just your potential contractor—you are also their potential customer! They should want to talk with you; provide you with as much information as possible, and eventually be hired for the job! If it seems like you’re pulling teeth trying to get information from them, you may want to be hesitant about moving forward!

Cheapest Isn’t Always Best – Lastly, hiring the cheapest contractor isn’t always best. For most homeowners, their home is their largest financial investment. So, you’ll not only want to feel confident in your contractor’s work but feel confident in your investment, too. Be leery of the cheapest bid, as it can be a good indicator of cheap material and/or poor craftsmanship. Remember, you get what you pay for!

Home remodeling can be invasive, but when you have the right contractor by your side, it can be far less troublesome. Establishing trust is vital, as trust goes a long way, especially in the construction industry! You not only want to trust your contractor for their craftsmanship, but you want to trust them as a guest in your home, too.

After 35 years in business, DBS has worked hard to maintain our reputation of cleanliness, politeness, and most importantly, trust! It’s an honor that we are not only proud to uphold but strive to maintain on every project we get the privilege of working on.

Want to learn more? Contact Us!