Let’s be honest for one second… most homeowners have either heard or have their own contractor horror stories. From issues ranging from crummy craftsmanship, to unlicensed companies, there are a number of problems that can arise on the jobsite that the homeowner can ultimately be left responsible and paying the price for.
Whether you’re looking for a painter, gutter installer, or a drywaller, the competition and amount of businesses to choose from in any urban area, such as Portland, can be overwhelming. With resources like Yelp, Home Advisor, Thumbtack, and every contractor claiming to be the best in their industry, it’s easy to glaze over during your search.
And any service-providing company should be performing high-quality, top-notch work. These are all traits that should be a given and not necessarily a perk. So how can you make sure you hire the right professional for your project? There are so many useful tools to help homeowners find and make a decision on the right company for their project. We’ve broken down a few of those options, providing you with enough knowledge to find the perfect contractor for your project.
If a company states that they are licensed, bonded, and insured that means that they have the required licenses to run their business, proper insurance, and have additional coverage through a bond. From the business side, these are all items essential to run a functional and safe business. Should any extreme damage happen to a home while a contractor is working, an employee gets injured, or a claim is made against them due to the quality of their work, the insurance and bond can help cover these costs.
This also protects you, as the homeowner, and ensures that you are hiring a reputable contractor that has practices in place in case any large issues arise during or after your project such as non-completion of a project, the business failing to take care of their own financials, or an employee getting hurt on your property.
All contracting companies in the state of Oregon are required to have a valid CCB license. Before agreeing to hire a contractor, it is always best to go to the CCB website to confirm their license number and ensure that they are, in fact, licensed. You can also see if any complaints have been made against them in the past 10 years. In an oversaturated market of contracting companies, the CCB acts as a control office for all issues pertaining contractor work. It is always best to hire someone with a valid CCB license which can act as a sort of insurance on your project. Homeowners can file a complaint to the CCB if a project goes south, allowing the CCB to step in and help solve any and all issues between customer and contractor.
In the age of technology it’s safe to say that when a homeowner is looking for a contractor their first step is either Google or Yelp. These are, of course, amazing resources for finding licensed and top-notch contractors within your area, but it’s important to check any and all reviews and cross reference across multiple sites. Take the time to read their reviews: what are the common trends you see with each company? What are the negative reviews saying?
Google and Yelp are by far the top go-to’s for internet searches, but also take the time to look at websites such as Houzz, Angie’s List, and Better Business Bureau. Another great resource is asking your closest neighbors on the NextDoor app. What’s a better referral than one from those who are nearest to you?
We cannot stress enough that the contracting world is an oversaturated market. There are plenty of painters, roofers, gutter installers, etc. in metropolitan areas. Unfortunately, there are also plenty of contractors who do not provide the work they say they will. Whether that’s under performance and a low-quality finished project, or in the worst-case scenario, a situation where they collect your deposit and you never hear from them again. It is always a best practice to do your homework when looking to hire a contractor. Read the reviews, ask your neighbors and friends, and get at minimum of three estimates to cross reference the scope of work.
Have any questions regarding finding the right contractor for your project? Please let us know! Home projects can be a huge headache, but it doesn’t have to be. Do the homework when searching for the right contractor so that when the project wraps up you can enjoy the quality-craftsmanship without the extra hassle.
Have a paint or color question you would like answered? Please send your question to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will do our best to try and answer it in an upcoming blog post.