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Choosing a general contractor is a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be.  By finding the right general contractor you can avoid many of the common problems some people run into, before they occur.  Do your homework and you can save time, money, and headaches.


Pick a Well Established General Contractor

If a general contractor has been in business for a long time, it’s a good sign of credibility.  Reach out to him or her on several occasions to chat and get a feel for how easy they are to reach.  If your general contractor is always letting the phone go to voice-mail, it might be an indication to take your business elsewhere.  Maintaining proper communication is vital for the completion of any project.  If you feel at all hesitant about asking for more details, you should take this as a sign that this contractor just isn’t for you.


Make Sure to Get an Exact Quote

When dealing with general contractors, you want to find someone who can give you a reliable and definitive price for the project at hand.  Did your general contractor give you an average price, or price per square foot?  These types of quotes are very general and end up causing issues later on in the project, when unexpected costs arise.  Make sure your quote is detailed, with expenses for both materials and labor.  Also be sure to get an estimated time of completion, so that a timeline can be establish and enforced.  What good is having a set price if it takes over a year to get the job done?


Make sure all pricing is for the same specification

When shopping around, it’s always tempting to go with the lower price.  Remember though, that pricing varies among contractors, and for various reasons.  When a general contractor decides to price your project make sure he quotes it the same way that his competition does.  If detailed drawings, and descriptions are absent, he might be hiding a cost until later on.  Tacking on additional costs upon the jobs completion doesn’t exactly equate to having comparable pricing.  Find out final costs upfront and make sure they are for the exact same things.

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