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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 siteHiring competent, trustworthy contractors for your property improvements and repairs can be one of the most difficult aspects of investing in Cypress single-family rental properties. Few investors have the time or resources to hire a contractor who consistently delivers subpar results. However, the truth is that there are con artists and other people out there who will attempt to scam you of your money and then abandon you. It is fortunately possible to identify the trustworthy, fairly priced contractors you require for every work by being aware of a few basic tips, methods, and things to avoid.

Ask for Referrals

In order to complete the work, you as a property owner need contractors you can trust. It’s a smart idea to search for industry experts you’ll want to rehire over and over again. You can save a great deal of time and money by doing so. But you have to start with research in order to choose contractors with whom you may develop enduring business ties. Requesting recommendations from reputable real estate agents, property managers, and other property owners is an excellent starting point. Online research of prospective contractors is also possible. Through comments from customers and even professional recommendations, a number of sites attempt to help with the screening of contractors.

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 names of one or more former customers who can comment on their experience. Once you have a list of potential contractors, be sure to inquire about their dependability, cost, responsiveness, and adaptability. Did they adhere to the agreed price? How did they handle your issues and changes? It’s best to keep looking if you have any reservations about the responses you receive.

Research Your Top Picks

It’s crucial to conduct a complete investigation of a candidate’s credentials and web reviews before making a hiring decision. For the name of your contractor, contact the state licensing board and look it up in the local court records. Use of unlicensed contractors is not advised as this may expose your rental property to significant liability. A high volume of grievances or legal actions is very negative news. The same holds true if you have trouble getting the contractor to pick up the phone or return your messages. While 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.

While the bid process is underway, there are a few other red flags to look out for. Consider keeping an eye out for things like negative internet reviews or eerily low costs, and avoid them if you find them. Also, it is recommended to avoid employing any contractor who requires a large deposit up front. Anything above 15% should be cause for alarm. 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 have evaluated several potential 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. Don’t accept the lowest bid, particularly if it’s substantially 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 does not intend to secure the necessary work permits. Nevertheless, it’s crucial to avoid paying too much for your contractor’s services. Target the median bid, which will likely be the most reasonable.

Starting out, it may be time-consuming finding the highest-quality contractors for your investment property’s renovations and restorations. However, once you are aware of who you can count on to complete the work, that part of your property management strategy may become a quick and easy procedure. You can save yourself time by contacting Real Property Management Republic, who has established contacts throughout Cypress. Call us at 281-362-5001 for more information today.

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