There are many, many different trade magazines. Virtually each aspect of building and remodeling has its own. For example, there are ones that cover just concrete, brick, heating and cooling, roofing, tile, etc. There simply are not enough hours in the day to read all of them!
The following contractor questions may make a few of you uncomfortable. You may gulp at trying to ask them. Well, before you give up, I want you to close your eyes and imagine $5,000, $10,000 or $25,000 of your money just vanishing in thin air. If you hire the wrong contractor for your job, this is a distinct possibility. I know, because I get numerous e-mails each week from people who have been cheated by bad contractors.
Homeowners across the nation are victimized each and every day by builders and remodelers who really don't know what they are doing. These builders and remodelers are often referred to as non-professionals. While that is true, very few people that I have come into contact with have ever discussed the root of the problem. Unfortunately, many problems occur long after the contractor is gone.
Probably the most frequent question I am asked is "How do I spot a professional builder or remodeler?" When selecting a contractor, ask questions. A professional will not dodge a question. He or she will answer each and every one. The anxiety that you are feeling should diminish with each answer. If not, something is wrong. The answers that a professional will offer should help to make you feel more comfortable.
Jobsites are different with each contractor. Some are neat and very safe while others are not. New home builders need to walk through their job site often. Read my tips on what to look for about how your home is being built. If you don't like something, talk to your contractor right away.
New home builders won't scare you off if you consider adding the right provisions in your contract. Specifications will keep your contractor from bullying you into accepting his poor workmanship. Contract law attorneys can help with the contract and save you from stress.
Quality construction seems to be, in some cases, what the customer is willing to accept. Not all contractors do quality work. Some are not as skillful as others. And some building materials will not withstand poor workmanship. New home construction customers should work hard to find a contractor that will perform quality work.
Construction bids can be confusing if you are comparing one to another. Sometimes one contractor is listing different things than the other. Sometimes you have trouble getting construction bids from a contractor at all. And, why is the price so high? Is it all profit?
Planning your material shipment will require working with your contractor to determine how long each job takes. Schedules are the only way to keep work delays to a minimum. Having a good set of drawings will help. Talk to each supplier to find out how long each item takes to deliver. Then check up on the orders. Charting your project is the only way to keep sane.