The decision to remodel your home might require serious amounts of money, time, and energy from you; therefore, you want this done correctly the first time.
Needless to say, major remodeling plans are in no way suitable to be DIY pursuits, which is why hiring a reliable general contractor is a must.
This blog will help you do just that!
Stages of Hiring a General Remodeling Contractor in Encino, CA.
1. Planning Stage
There are a million things to consider before beginning a home remodel.
The most important of these is the planning stage because it is here that you’ll define your goals for the project.
We suggest sitting down with paper and pencil and sketching out what you want to accomplish before getting an estimate from a contractor.
Here are some of the main things that you will need to consider during the planning stage:
How much money do you want or need to spend on your remodel? You must devise a financial plan before you begin so that you don’t get carried away and go over budget during the process.
A budget will keep you disciplined in the remodeling process and not be swayed by every new idea that comes up.
It will also prevent the regret of having overspent once the entire project is finished.
When do you want your remodeling done? It’s essential to create a timeline for your project so that all parties involved know what is expected and when it is expected by.
If there is no set deadline for completion, nobody will feel any urgency about getting the job done quickly.
Determining the timing is also crucial because you want to stay away from months of heavy rain, for example, as these elements will add some friction to the project.
While these factors are obviously beyond your control, living in Encino for several years will have given you some wisdom about which months are perfect for the project, weather-wise.
You will then need to decide what kinds of materials you will need or want in your project.
Do you want wood, carpet, tile, stone, or marble? Do you have the budget to afford these items?
For example, if you are looking to remodel a bedroom and living room, you will most likely need some wood and carpeting.
If you are looking to do a kitchen or bathroom renovation, then you will probably need marble or stone tiles.
Research these options and figure out which ones you like and are within your budget.
Do not be intimidated by the planning stage because once you hire a contractor, these plans will still be refined by them with respect to their professional opinion.
A contractor can help you with everything from creating a realistic budget to choosing the suitable building materials for the job.
However, your personal planning is still essential so you can clearly communicate what you want upfront and save yourself from too many modifications mid-project.
2. Scouting Stage
Once you’re satisfied with the clarity of your plan, it’s time to look for a general contractor to refine and, of course, execute that plan.
Here are the options you can try.
Ask your friends and family
The fact of the matter is, that people around you have gone through a home remodeling at least once.
Think of the people you know whose houses you admire and give them a call.
In today’s hyper-connected world, however, it’s very possible to get fantastic suggestions from mere acquaintances.
Consider making a “crowd-sourcing” post on social media so you can get referrals from both the people close to you and those that aren’t so much.
This is also efficient because most contractors have a social media presence too, and people can just link them to you, allowing for a quick evaluation.
Seek recommendations from neighbors
Like your family and friends, most of your neighbors have completed a home renovation job at some point in their lives, so they may have valuable suggestions.
Furthermore, paying a visit to your neighbors allows you to see their newly remodeled houses and speak to them about the experience.
This is a great way to bond with them, too.
Ask hardware store owners
Consider asking your local home improvement stores for referrals to reputable remodeling contractors in your area.
Many of these business owners have a list of companies available for hire in your community, especially if their business has been around for a while.
Check online listings
If you fail to find recommendations from the options above, let’s look at the obvious choice: online listings.
A quick Google search will pull up dozens of home improvement contractors in the area, each with their own website and literature.
The ads that appear at the top of your screen are known as pay-per-click ads.
These advertisers pay Google every time someone clicks on their ad and visit their website.
3. Screening Stage
At this point, you probably managed to put together a list of some worthy candidates for a remodeling contractor and you now have to screen them.
Read online reviews
After finding contractors through listings or referrals, the next step is to review their online literature.
Also, make an effort to locate some third-party evaluations and testimonials because you might find a wide range of feedback from former clients eager to vouch for a contractor’s work or warn others about his incapacity.
Conduct phone interviews
Once you’ve arrived at a list of prospects, it’s a good idea to phone each of them and ask them the following questions:
- Are they willing to take on projects of your size?
- Can they provide financial references from banks or suppliers?
- Can they present a list of previous clients?
- How many other projects are they currently working on?
- How long have they worked with their employees and subcontractors as a team?
These questions will give you an excellent impression of the company’s availability, dependability, the amount of attention they can devote to your project, and the ease of completing the task.
Ask them to come to your home
Ask them to check out your property so they can give you a professional estimate of how much it will cost. This is an SOP for most companies anyway.
- Make sure they’re licensed, bonded, and insured. A license shows that they have completed the required coursework and passed a test on building codes in your area. Bonding protects consumers against theft or damage by a contractor, while liability insurance protects consumers against accidents on their property.
- Ask for references from past customers who have had similar projects done, such as bathroom or kitchen remodels.
- Check their references carefully before hiring them. When choosing from a selection of contractors, look for evidence that they have experience with project management. The last thing you need is for your plans to be delayed or ruined because the team was lacking in this area.
Get multiple bids
You should get several bids and make sure you understand all the costs of your project.
This will help ensure that there are no surprises when it’s time to pay the bill.
A good contractor will walk you through the bidding process and explain why specific parts of the project cost what they do.
Beware of those who are not willing to thoroughly discuss the details of the job before the bid is written up.
Finding a reliable general contractor in Encino, CA- Conclusion
Overall, the good news is that finding a general home remodeling contractor in Encino doesn’t have to be a complicated process.
With the stages we’ve outlined for you above, you should be well on your way to getting the results that you want for your remodeling pursuit.