50 Contractor Interview Questions

6 responses

  1. Rachel
    January 20, 2015

    "May I please inspect the inside of your truck or car? "

    Have you seen "clients from hell"? I'd be ending the meeting right there and then if anyone ever asked me a question that presumptuous and ridiculous. It would indicate only that you have micro-managerial tendencies that would be intolerable in any reasonable client. You should only ask such a truly stupid question if you really want to damage your reputation when prospective contractors describe their experience of meeting you to their peers. A meeting isn't an interrogation or an opportunity for you to get away with acting like an ass. Remember that if you ever want anyone reasonable to work for you.

    • Tim Carter
      January 21, 2015

      Rachel, I have to disagree. It's not about micro-managing. It's about doing your due diligence. That question is very simple. If the inside of a contractor's truck looks like a LANDFILL, how do you think he'll treat the inside of your home? If the inside of his truck is pretty clean - and I know MANY CONTRACTORS who have very clean truck interiors - how do you think he'll care for your most expensive possession?

      I worked for micro managers. In fact, it's the reason I started AsktheBuilder.com. But my twenty years of doing AsktheBuilder.com and my syndicated newspaper column has proven that TENS OFTHOUSANDS of homeowners should have asked that question of their contractors. Why? I get to do autopsies each day when homeowners come to me telling me how SLOPPY, DISGUSTING, FILTHY their houses are because they made the MISTAKE of choosing contractors that have very bad habits about cleanliness and respect of property.

      You go ahead and end that meeting in the future. But ask yourself the question Clint Eastwood poses to the bank robber at the beginning of Dirty Harry. "Do you feel lucky? Well do ya punk?" That customer you walk away from could be your ten-million-dollar customer - the one that CONNECTS you to many other of his/her friends who's collective contracts on all the work adds up to MORE THAN ANY OTHER REFERRAL.

      I was LUCKY enough in my career to have one of these Golden Customers. I'm glad I didn't walk out of the meeting because HE DID ASK ME A SERIES OF TOUGH QUESTIONS that fortunately I had all the right answers for. I wish you the best in your future gambling encounters.

      • Angel
        March 9, 2016

        I am with Rachel

      • Jessica
        April 28, 2016

        I'm with Rachel too. This is a creepily invasive list.

  2. Sue
    May 25, 2016

    I am 100% in agreement with Tim Carter. I have had this exact experience and it is so true that if the contractor has a sloppy - not old - vehicle they are sure to treat your home as such. If they are reputable then they get it and won't have any problem answering your difficult questions. I have owned my current home for 28 years and have remodeled several times, either by choice or necesiity (earthquake and upkeep). Each time I've learned what to watch out for, particularly when work is abundant and contractors crawl out of the woodwork. Don't underestimate your instincts, it not only will cost you in aggravation, but costly repairs and possible litigation - been there too.

  3. Amy
    October 19, 2016

    I should have asked to see his vehicle first because the contractors who are building our house leaves it filthy. I cant tell you how many times my husband and I come out to the house to pick up trash, pick up debris, sweep, etc... And yes, we have complained to the builder but we just hear "its part of the construction process." If I has walked through one of their homes during construction, and saw how they kept it...I would have second thoughts. So, I do agree with Tim.

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