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Contractor Hiring 101: Tips, Tricks, and Red Flags to Avoid

Young couple talking to construction worker about housing design plans at construction site Hiring competent, trustworthy contractors for your property improvements and repairs can be one of the most difficult aspects of investing in Fairburn single-family rental properties. Few investors have the time or resources to hire a contractor who consistently delivers subpar results. But in actuality, there are people out there who will try to con you out of your money and then abandon you. Fortunately, finding trustworthy, fairly priced contractors is achievable if you are aware of a few straightforward methods and ideas as well as what to avoid.

Ask for Referrals

You need trustworthy contractors to complete the work if you’re a property owner. It’s a smart idea to search for industry experts you’ll want to rehire over and over again. By doing this, you can save a ton of time and money. But you need to begin with research in order to select contractors with whom you can build lasting business relationships. To get started, go seek out reputable property managers, real estate brokers, and other property owners for recommendations. Additionally, you can look up prospective contractors online. Numerous websites make an effort to aid in the screening of contractors using client reviews or even expert advice.

Ask for References

Asking for references is yet another suggestion for choosing an excellent contractor (or two). A good contractor will be pleased to give you the contact details of one or more previous clients who may offer input on their experience. Ask specific questions about the contractor’s dependability, affordability, response, and flexibility as soon as you have their name. Did they adhere to the agreed price? How did they handle your worries and changes? If you have doubts about the answers you receive, you should continue searching.

Research Your Top Picks

Before committing to a hire, it is essential to conduct a comprehensive examination of their licenses and online reviews. Consult your state’s licensing authority and local court records for your contractor’s name. You shouldn’t employ unlicensed contractors, as doing so could expose you to significant liability with your rental property. A high volume of complaints or litigation is a very negative sign. The same applies if you can’t get the contractor to pick up the phone or return your messages. Even though a few missed phone calls are not necessarily indicative of trouble, if more than twenty-four hours pass without a response, you should move on.

Several additional red flags should be observed during the bidding phase. For example, look for negative online reviews or suspiciously low prices, and if you discover them, steer clear. Additionally, it’s recommended to steer clear of any contractor who requests a sizable upfront deposit. Concerns should be made for anything above 15%. The same holds true if the contractor states that they will require an unlimited amount of time and materials, or if they make extravagant claims about how much they can accomplish within a certain time frame. It is essential to discover someone who is consistently realistic regarding project costs and completion times, in addition to someone who can work efficiently.

Focus on Quality

Once you’ve vetted a number of prospective contractors, request bids from them. The bid will indicate what you can expect to pay for the work and how each contractor calculates their rates. Although it may be tempting, you should not accept the lowest offer, particularly if it is significantly lower than the others. Extremely cheap bids may occasionally be an indication that the contractor is trying to entice you with a low price just to tack on extra costs later. They can also indicate that the contractor has no intention of obtaining the necessary work permits. At the same time, it’s crucial to avoid paying too much for your contractor’s services. Aim for the middle bid because it is likely to be the most realistic.

It can take some time at first to find the correct contractors for your investment property’s repairs and improvements. But once you know who you can trust to do the work, that part of your property management strategy can turn into a quick and easy procedure. You can save yourself time by contacting Real Property Management SuiteLife, who has established contacts throughout Fairburn. Call us at 678-552-1915 for more information today.

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