Ask your potential contractor for references from their last five project owners, in chronological order. This list may or may not include names on the reference list in Step 1. Call the project owners on this list if they were not on the first list. Ask them the same series of questions presented in Step 1. Why, you ask? Because you are trying to uncover any potential issues with past projects, and who better to comment on a contractor’s performance than their last five project Owners. If these new references were not completely content, perhaps your contractor’s ability to satisfy recently diminished. You should consider moving on if this is the case.
Construction is very much a “what have you done for me lately” industry. Dozens of factors affect a contractors ability to perform, and assessing these factors based upon recent work is critical. One such factor is covered in Step 3…
Step 1. Do their Biggest Fans Love Them?
Step 2. Are Their Most Recent Clients Happy?
Step 3. Do Their Suppliers Tolerate Them?
Step 4. Are the Feds Hunting Them?
Deren S. Monday has spent over a decade in the residential and commercial construction industry, and is a graduate of the Construction Management Department at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. He will send his references upon request and assures you his list would be full of his biggest fans. Deren is the author of Your Cheap Kitchen Remodel: A Guide to Your Affordable Dream Kitchen. More information on his book can be found at cheapkitchenremodel.com.
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