How much is a reputation worth? In the words of a well-known credit card advertisement: “Priceless.” Truly, when hiring a custom remodeler or custom home builder, reputation is everything. You’ll be spending your hard-earned treasure to get what you expect to be top-notch work and impeccable service. You should hire a contractor whose reputation precedes him. People should be talking about him – positively, of course.
To find the right custom remodeler, thoroughly vet him and his business. Don’t just look him up on the Better Business Bureau website. Contractors and other businesses are constantly changing names and re-registering to cover any complaints or unresolved issues. Ask the BBB for a written statement about arbitration on the contractor’s behalf and how it was resolved. You often don’t have to look far to find a complaint about a contractor – home improvement contracting has been among the top three consumer complaint areas to the NACAA/FCA Consumer Complaint Survey for the past six years.
Check the contractor’s references. A good contractor will provide a list of a variety of customers – some recent and others from five to seven years ago. Find out how the contractor dealt with any follow-up problems. Ask about his attention to detail, his adherence to budget parameters and his respect for his customers. Hands down, the responses should be positive, without hesitation. Word of mouth should be amazingly positive. Often, these reputable contractors are not the lowest bidders for a job. They don’t cut corners and they don’t’ underbid just to get a job. They are fair and honest and know that a sterling reputation is, in fact, priceless.