If you plan on renovating any of your investment deals, it’s critical that you have a good contractor on your team who can get the work done on time and under budget.
Nothing will kill a profitable deal faster than going over your budget on repair costs. It will eat into your profits and can quickly cause you to lose money on your deal; therefore it is of the utmost importance that you have the right contractor on your team.
Here are 14 Killer questions to ask your contractor:
1.) Are you licensed and bonded?
Make sure that your contractor has all the appropriate business and professional licenses that’s needed in your jurisdiction and also make sure that he is insured and bonded. If you plan on doing any major renovations, you definitely want to have a licensed contractor do the work.
2.) What similar projects like this have you worked on?
The bottom line is that everybody can’t do everything; so if you’re talking to a contractor that specializes in renovating kitchens, don’t ask them to build you a deck. You want to deal with contractors within their specialty. Also make sure to get two or three references and call them up to see what type of work the contractor has done in the past.
3.) What will be the typical workflow for this project?
You want to know the details of the project workflow, such as the number of people who will be working on the project. Obviously the more people that’s going to be working on the project, the faster it can get completed. What day will the contractor arrive on the site? At what time will they arrive at the property and when will they leave for the day? Will the contractor that you hire actually be on-site doing the work or will they show up throughout the day to oversee the work that’s being done by their staff? All of these things pertain to the workflow of the project and need to be addressed in advance.
4.) What is your timeline for completion?
You want to know how much lead time the contractor needs to schedule and complete your project once you’ve actually hired him to do the work. You should also confirm whether there would be any penalties involved if the contractor fails to complete the project on time. If there aren’t any penalties, you should attempt to negotiate a reduction in price for every day that the contractor is late completing the project.
5.) What is your level of experience?
Ask about all the pertinent details that pertain to the contractor’s experience, such as how long he has been performing his trade, the average number of projects he completes and how long he has been in business.
6.) Do You Warranty Your Work?
It’s important to hire someone who actually guarantees their work because if there’s an issue for any reason you need to be reassured that the contractor will return to the site to fix the work that they’ve done.
7.) Can You Give Me an Itemized Bid?
Ask your contractor if they can itemize their bid. You should avoid bottom-line bids and instead have the contractor itemize the project on a line-item basis for each component of the project such as, the cost of demolition, trash haul-off, carpentry, kitchen and bathroom renovations, etc.