There are different types of contractor licenses, depending on what construction sector the professional wants to choose. You must be 18 years of age or older and have the experience and skills necessary to perform activities related to the construction business. The economic cost is minimal, considering that obtaining the license will mean your professional success and higher income. To become a professional dwelling contractor, you must know specific fields: Wisconsin laws, building codes, and best practices. So, to facilitate your career and license approval, it is highly recommended to join the Dwelling contractor qualifier license online program.
How to find a contractor?
Adding a room, renovating the basement, or making those much-needed repairs: finding the right contractor is essential. A poorly done home improvement project can have consequences. Online advertisements cannot prove the professionalism of a dwelling contractor. Find out for yourself. Check with friends, neighbors, or co-workers who have hired such a professional. Check out a contractor’s reputation by reading ratings posted on reputable websites. Ask for written quotes from multiple firms and keep in mind that the lowest bid may not be the best option. It is also important to you that you know what the signs of a scam are.
Ø A general contractor handles all aspects of a project, including hiring and supervising subcontractors, obtaining construction or building permits, and scheduling inspections.
Ø A specialized contractor: he installs particular products or components, such as cabinets or cabinets and bathroom fixtures.
Ø An architect designs houses, additions, and major renovations or remodels – especially those projects that involve structural changes.
Ø A designer or a design/build contractor: he provides both services.
Ask for a written contract.
Contract requirements vary by state. Even if a written contract is not required in your state, ask the contractor to make and deliver a deal to you. The agreement must be clear and concise and must include all the answers regarding who, what, and when the work will be done and your project’s cost. Be careful and know the below aspects before signing a contract –
- Contractor’s name, contact number (business), and address, above all, the valid license number.
- An estimated start and end date of the works,
- The payment terms and mode for the contractor, subcontractors, and suppliers,
- See if there is an obligation to get all required permits,
- How change orders will be handled,
- A detailed list of all materials including color, model, size, and brand and product name,
- ü Information on the warranties covering materials and craft,
- What will contractor do and won’t
- All promises are made during conversations or phone calls with the contractor.
After hiring a contractor
Keep all stationery related to your project in one place. It includes – copies of the contract, change orders, all correspondence with the professionals in charge of remodeling your home, and a record of all payments. You may need them for tax purposes.
Create a spreadsheet to record all phone calls, conversations, and activities. You may also want to take photos as the job progresses. These records will be instrumental if problems arise with your project – during or when construction is completed. Do not make the final payment or sign any discharge or termination affidavit until you are satisfied with the work quality. Protect yourself by asking the contractor and each subcontractor and vendor to provide you with a release or waiver of lien on your property.
Use a completed work checklist.
Before making the last payment, verify that –
- All the works conform to the standards detailed in the contract,
- It has all the written warranties for materials and craft,
- You have documentation that the contractor paid all subcontractors and suppliers,
- The work-place was left clean, and all excess material, tools, and work equipment were removed,
- He has done a reasonable inspection and approved all completed work.
Signs of a home improvement scam
How can you determine if a contractor cannot be trusted? Match the criteria and be aware of the contractor whom you cannot trust –
- Doesn’t have a proper contractor license,
- Knock on your door offering your services or offering you discounts in exchange for you finding other customers,
- Does he pressure you to do anything?
- Accept only cash payments, ask him to pay you everything upfront, or suggest that you borrow money through a lender he recommends,
- Ask you to process the necessary building permits,
In general, primary disputes can be solved while having a faithful conversation with your contractor. Many arguments can be resolved at this level. Follow up each phone conversation with a letter sent by certified mail. Ask for an acknowledgment of receipt. That receipt is your proof that the company received your message. Keep a copy for your records. If you cannot resolve the problem with the contractor, consider seeking outside help.
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