Most people who want to renovate their homes don't do the work themselves; they hire contractors. But hiring a contractor can be a stressful process, especially with construction projects notoriously running late and over budget. How can you make your construction project as pleasurable as possible? Take this quiz to see if you know what questions you should ask your contractor before construction begins.
Who licenses contractors in the United States?
a professional organization
the federal government
What should you check about a contractor's relationship with his or her employees?
whether they are paid legally
whether they are paid daily, weekly or monthly
whether they like the contractor as a boss
Why should you check whether the contractor plans to hire subcontractors?
to ensure that you know who will be responsible if the job is not done properly
because you should pay less if subcontractors are involved
because you could hire the subcontractors yourself
What can you do to protect yourself from getting cheated by paying for work that doesn't get done?
ask all goods and service providers on your job for a lien release
get notarized contracts
What else should you find out regarding supervision of your job site?
how many other jobs the contractor is working on simultaneously
what the contractor's managerial style is
how many workers are expected for your job
In addition to the job description, payments and materials to be used, what else should you make sure is in your contract with a contractor?
a timetable and the completion date
how many people will work on the job at a time
which suppliers the contractor will purchase materials from
If you are not constantly present at the worksite, how should you handle updates and site visits?
schedule them in advance
show up unannounced at the site
determine with your contractor before the project begins how such issues will be handled
When should you sign the contract with your contractor?
as soon as the two of you agree to the job in principle
after you agree to the job description and timetable
only when all details have been worked out to your satisfaction
Who is responsible to acquire building permits and Homeowner's Association approvals?
you and the contractor together
Why should you not automatically choose the contractor who offers you the lowest price?
low prices might indicate cut corners
the low price will inevitably go up once the contract is signed
contractors who offer low prices may not be reliable