Questions to consider when hiring a renovation contractor

Home renovations are complex projects and can be a significant investment. An essential first step is hiring an experienced and reputable kitchen renovation contractor for the job. Always get two or three quotes from different companies, do your due diligence, and research each of them before choosing who does the project.

Electric Woods in Edmonton is a trustworthy contractor that specializes in kitchen renovations. They share things you’ll want to explore and questions you’ll want to ask when comparing and interviewing a contractor.

Do you have a plan and design for your renovation?

A contractor can’t provide you with an accurate budget until the design and materials have been selected. The price for a bathroom remodel can vary from $10,000 for a minor update to $20,000+ for a fully custom bathroom. If the renovation is relatively simple and you know what you want, most experienced contractors can work with you and provide a quote. If it is more involved, a designer or architect would be the first step in the renovation process.

There are design and build contractors who take care of the whole process for you, or you can hire a designer or architect depending on the project needs to come up with the design before you start looking for a contractor. Having a detailed design beforehand ensures all contractors provide a bid for the same scope of work and are not missing anything or skipping any corners to try and give you a lower price than the competition.

How long will the project take to complete?

Find out how long they expect your project to take so you can plan for and know if it is moving along as planned. A small project could take two to three days to complete, whereas a more extensive renovation such as a kitchen could take four to size weeks. It all depends on the complexity and scope of work. Delays happen, especially with having to deal with COVID and all the material and shipping delays occurring recently.

What permits are required?

Typically any job other than minor cosmetic changes requires permitting. Any electrical, plumbing, HVAC or structural modifications changes will require a certified tradesperson to obtain permits and perform the work.

What about safety and site protection?

Ask how your contractor will be ensuring the safety of their staff, sub-contractors, your family and property. Do the staff and subcontractors have background checks? Do they follow OHS regulations? What safety protocols do they have in place? How will the construction area be separated from the rest of your house? Daily cleaning and dust mitigation such as containment walls and air scrubbers?

What are the payment terms?

You and the contractor should agree on payment terms before signing any contracts. No money should ever be paid in advance unless they have a prepaid contractor license as required in Alberta. Then and only then should you pay a small signing deposit to lock you into the contractor’s schedule or a material deposit. Progress payments are the fairest and most common form of payment, typically every two weeks but will vary depending on your contractor and the length of the job.

Can they provide references?

Ask your contractor for photos of previous work and references from two to three clients. Do some research before selecting a contractor. If they are good at what they do, they should have lots of clients willing to give a reference if asked.

Are they licensed and insured?

Find out whether the contractor has all the required licenses from your province and local municipalities. Ensure they are adequately insured, carry WCB and have a prepaid contractor license if they need a deposit before performing any work. All their subcontractors should also have the same.

Get it in writing!

After selecting a contractor, carefully look at the contract they have prepared. Does it look professional? Is it easy to understand, or is it full of legal terms? If anything is confusing or brings up immediate red flags, have a contract lawyer look over it before signing. Here are a few things that every contract should have.

– a quote and payment schedule
– specifics about the scope of work
– the site plan
– a change-order clause
– a detailed schedule of the project
– a workmanship and material warranty
– a clause about dispute resolution
– liability waiver
– contract termination requirements

A reputable contractor will always give you a contract in writing and be open and honest if you have questions or concerns.

Kitchen Renovations in Edmonton

Electric Woods is an electrical and general contractor specializing in home renovations and commercial tenant improvements. Their knowledgeable team has experience in electrical, drywall, painting, carpentry and more. They’re committed to reliability and quality, so you’re completely satisfied with your complete basement, bathroom, or kitchen renovation.

If you’re ready to renovate, contact Electric Woods today!

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