When embarking on a bathroom remodeling project, there are a lot of things to consider, such as the scale of the project and what you wish the final results to be. Yet the most important item on the agenda will be choosing the contractor. A good contractor can help you realize the bathroom of your dreams, an oasis of calm amidst the turbulent maelstrom of the world. A bad contractor can turn even the simplest bathroom remodeling project into a total nightmare. In an effort to provide some guidance and help, All About Bathrooms wishes to offer some warning signs that you’re not dealing with an honest contractor.
The first warning sign that you’re dealing with a dishonest contractor is that they are not licensed or insured. State and local laws mandate that any extensive remodeling projects done on one’s home have to be carried out by licensed individuals. Without a valid license, the proper permits cannot be pulled for any remodeling work that needs to be done. This can greatly affect you if you decide to sell your home as any such unlicensed work will need to be corrected, usually at considerable expense. Another item to look for is that the contractor is also insured. This helps protect them and you from any accidents that may occur during the bathroom remodeling project. If the contractor is not insured, then any damages incurred may come out of your pocket. Honest remodeling contractors, such as All About Bathrooms, will gladly provide licensing and insurance documentation before any work is begun.
One method that a dishonest contractor uses to get business is to provide extremely cheap estimates to the homeowner. A number of factors are used to compile an accurate estimate, including labor, material costs, and a small percentage to cover problems that may arise. A good rule of thumb is that one can expect to pay from five to ten percent of a home’s value on a bathroom remodeling project. If an estimate is incredibly low when compared to others (as well as the five to ten percent rule), then you can expect that the contractor will cut corners, such as using inferior materials or unskilled labor. The results can be disastrous, causing the homeowner to have to hire another contractor to fix the mess left by the dishonest one. Remember what your parents always told you: if it’s too good to be true, then it probably is.
Another issue concerning estimates is if the bathroom remodeling contractor does not offer you a written estimate. This should immediately begin setting off red alert sirens in your mind if it happens. If you accept a verbal estimate, then be prepared for some”unexpected” and “unforeseen” expenses to arise, all of which will come out of your pocket. All About Bathrooms always provides a detailed written estimate and is always happy to go over each item in it to ensure that the homeowner fully understands what needs to be done and the cost of doing them. One last factor of getting an estimate is that
it should also include the time period that the bathroom remodeling contractor expects to get the job done. If the contractor is vague on the estimated time period, then chances are that they will be looking to milk you for as much money as possible by drawing out the completion of the project. A lack of referrals is another sign that you’re dealing with a dishonest contractor. An honest contractor will provide multiple referrals to showcase the quality of their work through written testimonials. If such referrals are not forthcoming, then you should immediately cease dealing with that contractor. If you do get referrals, then you should verify them to make sure that they’re legitimate. Make sure that the referrals are for the same company that you’re thinking of hiring. It would also be prudent to check with your local Better Business Bureau to see if any complaints have been lodged against the contractor. Another thing to look for when considering a bathroom remodeling contractor are before-and- after photos of previous projects. All ethical contractors have such photos as it shows the quality of the work that they have done and the types of bathroom remodeling projects that they have tackled in the past. A wise action is to make sure that the before-and- after photos match with the referrals that have been offered. We at All
About Bathrooms are always happy to offer referrals from our satisfied customers and show photos of the sterling work that we have done for them. There is one more criteria to look for when discerning a dishonest contractor: professionalism. The contractor should inform you exactly who will be in your home remodeling your bathroom. They should show up on time, be clean and presentable, have the tools necessary to do the job, clean up when they’re done, and do the work that you’re paying them to do while they are on-site. Dishonest contractors will look for ways to pad their expenses, such as by working slowly to beef up their hours. Remember that these contractors will be in your home, perhaps even when you are not there.
As you can see, there are a number of warning signs to look out for that shows that you’re not dealing with an honest contractor. These red flags include: not be willing to provide a written estimate, not being licensed and insured, offering an estimate this is incredibly low for the work that needs to be done, not acting in a professional manner, and not offering to show you referrals and before-and- after photos of previous projects that they have worked on. Such signs definitely point to future chaos and a waste of money. It’s always wise to do your homework on any potential contractor that you’re wishing to hire for a bathroom remodeling project. Finding the right contractor can make everything go smoothly while a bad one can turn the entire endeavor into a wretched experience.