Be cautious when comparing contractor quotes

When you’re embarking on a major home renovation project, you should get a few quotes from contractors or renovation companies. Generally, the quote will include the entire scope of work and the cost of things like labour, materials, supplies and permits.

Some quotes might come up less expensive than others, but that doesn’t mean they’re the right choice. Factory Edge Construction Ltd. in Vancouver shares the dangers of comparing “apples to apples” when it comes to contractor quotes:

Cheaper is not better.

If you had one contractor come way below the rest, it does not mean they are the right choice. It could mean that they have limited experience and resources, which is why their quote is so low. You do not want an amateur taking care of a large-scale renovation project. In some cases, they might simply forget or not know about certain parts of the project that need to be included on the estimate. These things will pop up halfway through the renovation and you’ll be expected to pay for them.

An experienced contractor will understand the cost of completing a home renovation. Hiring people with years of training and professional experience will always cost more than someone with little experience. But you will always get what you pay for (or what you don’t pay for too).

There could be costs not mentioned on the estimate.

Unfortunately, not every contractor is an honest contractor. There are instances where a contractor will purposefully leave out many integral parts to the project in their scope of work inclusions. You might be happy with the price when the project starts, but those things they left out in the beginning will start to pop up and you’ll be expected to pay for them. Halfway through the job there will be ‘extra work’ required, adding to the initial estimate and blowing your budget.

The last thing you want is to be held hostage for an additional sum of money with your home under construction and a dishonest contract in place.

When is extra cost okay?

There are some things that could incur additional cost throughout your renovation project that are not because of a dodgy or inexperienced contractor. Sometimes the municipality revises building code requirements, and so extra work might have to be done mid-project to be compliant to those revisions.

Unforeseen issues could cause additional cost. The contractor could find water damage or mould in the house after demolition or find that you need a plumbing or electrical upgrade that they couldn’t see before. An experienced contractor will advise you to add a 10% buffer to your budget, to help you prepare financially for these unexpected mishaps.

If you change your mind mid-project, there might be a cost for that. For example, if you decide last minute you want granite countertops instead of the laminate counters you originally picked out – you’re cost will go up. Or if you decide to add to the scope of work, the cost could go up.

Do your due diligence.

Do your due diligence when comparing quotes. If one is much lower than the others, start asking questions. Are there additional costs to expect while the project is underway? Does the estimate include all materials, supplies, tools and even tool rentals? Does the estimate include hiring of all trades and workers as well as managing those workers? Are permits and inspections included in the estimate? How many years of experience do you have as a general contractor?

Check for proper licensing, insurance and WCB coverage. Ask for references from previous clients and examples of their past work. See if they are a member of any third-party organization like RenovationFind or the Better Business Bureau. All of these things will help you determine if they’re the right contractor for your project.

General Contractors in Vancouver

Factory Edge Construction’s goal is to change the stigma around hiring a contractor in the Lower Mainland, BC. Unfortunately, the industry is full of untrustworthy contractors. Factory Edge is committed to changing the way you view contractors through their “Trust, Reliability and Ability” policy. They strive to build trust through consistent, reliable service and workmanship. They are committed to getting your home renovation done in a professional, safe and efficient manner.

Want a quote? Contact Factory Edge Construction today!

Home Renovation by Factory Edge Construction


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