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Engineer Teamwork Meeting, Drawing working on blueprint meeting for project working with partner on model building and engineering tools in working site, Construction and structure concept

How to Hire a General Contractor

To plan your next big home project, you need to consider a few details:

  • Budget,
  • Timeline, and
  • The contractors who can help you

    Finding the right fit, however, is not an easy task. Since hiring a general contractor requires so much research and preparation, people can feel overwhelmed, intimidated, or just plain frustrated. 

    identify your need

    It might be a good idea to look for a contractor who specializes in your field if you have a small or specific project such as cabinetry. A general contractor may not be necessary if your construction project or home remodel does not require structural changes however, the approval of structural changes for substantial projects may require a structural engineer.

    Research Local Contractors

    After you have determined what type of contractor you need, do some research. Get referrals from friends and colleagues and search online for local contractors as well. Look for professional, current websites and online reviews. 

    Here are some important questions to ask:

    • When will they be able to begin the work?
    • Does the contractor have a license? Are they insured, and if so, what types of coverage do they have?
    • Have they completed similar work in the past?
    • Will they provide you with a detailed contract once you have both agreed to the terms of the project?
    • Do they have a list of references to contact? 

    Select a Qualified General Contractor

    Select general contractors who are professional and respectful, answered all your questions satisfactorily, and appeared excited to work with you on your home building project. Request an in-person meeting to discuss the building project in further detail. This is your opportunity to ask more specific questions about your project and discuss it in greater detail.

    Finalize a contract

    A contractor’s price and payment should be negotiated once you’ve selected one. Prices are unlikely to change much, but you will have to negotiate payment plans and budget for contingencies. Each contractor will have a different expectation of a down payment. Payments should be contingent on the timely and quality completion of the contract 

    Before any work begins, get everything in writing and draw up a contract. Your contract needs to be explicitly detailed down to the finest points.

    Your home may be the biggest investment you ever make. Put in the necessary research and time to find the right general contractor for your home renovation or remodeling project.

    Jones & DeMille Engineering

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