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BBB Tip: Hiring construction and remodeling services you can trust

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  There are many motivations for taking on a remodeling project – improving curb appeal, adding new features to a room, updating your interior, etc. Before starting construction or remodeling, homeowners must consider carefully who should work in their home; find Better Business Bureau (BBB)–rated remodeling companies near you athttps://www.bbb.org/near-me/remodeling. There are also some specific things to consider before work begins:

  • Plan your project from start to finish. Talk to friends or family members who have remodeling work you like. Find pictures of what you like to show the contractor what you want. If you leave any decisions up to the contractor, ensure you put budget and material requirements in the contract. Be clear about who is responsible for ordering materials and when they need to do it. Remember that delivery and construction times might affect your schedule; decide when workers may be in your home and where they should store any materials and equipment when they are not there.
  • Figure out your entire budget. Don’t forget things like eating out more than usual if you are doing a kitchen remodel or hotel expenses if you have to move out of your home during any work. Expect to have a little extra money in the budget to cover any unexpected expenses, especially when working on an older home. Decide if you need to split the project into phases based on how the budget is shaping up. If the contractor arranges to finance the remodeling work, be sure you understand all aspects of the terms, especially if you are taking out a second mortgage on your home or a home equity line as security. You might want to ask about putting an arbitration clause into your contract in case of any dispute between you and your contractor. Get all changes in writing before work continues.
  • Inspect prior work. When you talk to potential contractors, ask them for examples of work they have done that is similar to what you want. Find out if it is possible to contact previous clients and inspect the work that was done for them. You will also want to ask the client if the project was finished on time, if they were satisfied with the work and if any unexpected costs were added during the project. Ask and check to see if the contractor is licensed and bonded in your city and state to perform the work. Be sure to check out their BBB profile for reviews and licensing information.
  • Approve architectural plans. If your project requires plans from an architect, ensure you are involved in discussions with them and approve any plans before work begins.
  • Research permits. Talk to your remodeling contractor about permits and do independent research to determine what is required. Make sure the remodeler will be able to obtain permits before starting the work.

  Learn more about hiring a reliable and trustworthy contractor. See all of our home improvement tips on BBB.org/HomeHQ. Always do business with contractors that adhere to BBB Standards for Trust. If you own a business, get accredited.

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