There are all kinds of reasons you might want to hire a contractor, from building-wide remodels to emergency repairs. The work they do could take a matter of hours, or a matter of months. Optimally, you’ll want to establish a network of contractors who you know and trust to work on commercial projects. When you’re in the hiring phase, there are a few things that you should keep in mind.
Check the paperwork
You’ve heard it before, but we’ll say it again: make sure your contractors are licensed, bonded, and insured. Any less could mean huge consequences for your business, especially if something goes wrong. A good contractor will offer protections against, for example, liability claims stemming from faulty workmanship.
Don’t hire your buddy who is good with their hands – hire someone with the proper certifications and insurance.
Hire a specialist
Unless you’re building something from the ground up, you’ll want to hire a specialist for every new project you have. There’s no need to hire a general contractor when you want to increase your electrical capacity or repair your sewer line – hiring a specialist means you’ll get the tools and experience you need for the job.
Get a contract before work starts
Don’t let your contractor lift a finger until you have a detailed contract. That contract should include estimates (the costs of materials, labor, etc.), the work that’s being done, what’s included, what’s excluded, any subcontractors who will be working with the contractor – that sort of thing.
This contract will offer security for both you and the contractor. Any good relationship is all about communication, and your relationship with your contractor is no different.
Get into the details
Did you find subcontractors in the contract? Talk with your contractor about exactly who those subcontractors are, what they’ll be doing on the job site, and why they’re necessary. Look into the subcontractors yourself to make sure they have a good reputation.
Do you have particular rules you need the contractor to follow, i.e. no loud noises during certain times? Spell out those rules for your contractor, and make sure they’re in the contract.
In other words, investigate anything you’re not sure about, ask questions, and spell out stipulations as clearly as possible.
Investigate their previous work
Ask for referrals, testimonials, and pictures. Don’t just look at them – get in touch with the people who have worked with this contractor before. Where applicable, go to their property and check their work. See if you can find anyone who wasn’t happy with a contractor’s work, and find out why.
You might feel like this is excessive, but it’s not – once you find a contractor who meets your stringent requirements, you might have a lifelong business relationship with them.
Get a number of quotes
Don’t just settle for looking into one contractor – get quotes from a number of different contractors, and go through the process we’ve laid out here with all of them. You’re hiring for commercial work, after all – you need to get good value out of the contracts you sign.
Hire someone you trust
At the end of the day, you’re going to have to go with your gut – if something feels off about a contractor, even if you can’t place your finger on what it is, it’s best to leave them and choose a different contractor. After all, they might be working with you for months – and months of problems or tension is something no one wants to deal with.
Looking for commercial contractors in Albuquerque? We specialize in construction and plumbing – and we’ve worked with the best. We’d love to talk to you.