1. How long have you Been Doing This?
Contracting firms that have been operating for many years have had a chance to solve most of the teething problems that any new company experiences. Such a company will have the controls and systems in place that can help it meet deadlines on budget and without compromising quality. The same case applies to property managers in Conroe. Experience is usually a guarantee for success.
In some cases, people may opt to go for a small company that is headed by a person with years of experience. Although the company is new in this aspect, the people behind it have years of experience, which is good for ensuring success. To be safe, we recommend that such a company is first given a small project to work on. If they prove themselves, they can move on to the next big project.
2. Do You Have License?
Before you even begin any negotiations on the terms of the contract, always ask a contractor if they have a license. Cities, states, and even counties will have different requirements on whether contractors should obtain licenses. For a property owner, it is important to ensure that the contractor you choose has obtained all the required certification and licenses. You could be setting yourself up for lengthy court battles if you hire an unlicensed contractor.
3. Do You Have a Certificate of Insurance?
Asking the contractor if they have insurance is not as telling as seeing the certificate itself. This will allow you to see how they are insured. A good contractor must have cover for the worker’s compensation and liability for the type of job they are performing. Looking at the documents will allow you to determine that they do have the insurance cover that you require. This question will also apply to a property management company in Conroe once the project is done.
4. Is the Bid an Estimate or a fixed Price
For some contractors, the bid is a mere estimate, which means the bills may wind up being higher than you expected. Always request for a fixed price bid for any project. If the contractor says that the fixed price is too much of a risk because of the unknowns, try to eliminate the unknowns. If you cannot resolve any unknowns that they are concerned about, we recommend that you move on to a more reliable contractor.
5. Who Will Be at the Site?
It is important that you ascertain how the contractor plans to handle site supervision and how he or she will handle subcontractors. For instance, you need to find out if your contractor has a work crew or they will subcontract the entire process. You should also obtain a record of everyone working at the site. That way, when the contractor refuses to pay his subcontractors, you will not be burned. Sometimes, a lien can be placed on your property when a subcontractor is not paid. You can protect yourself by obtaining lien releases from everyone working on the site.
Additionally, ask them how long they intend to stay at the site each week. Ask them how many other jobs they are handling besides yours. It is important that you know who will be supervising the project when he or she is not at the worksite.
6. Can You Give a Timeline?
It is one of the most important questions that you should ask a contractor before you sign any documents. You need to know if they offer you a fixed start and completion date. The dates need to be included in a formal agreement along with the timetable of how the work will be done. Besides, you should also confirm how change orders might affect timelines.
During the project, it is always nice to check in occasionally how everything is coming along. Thus, you should ask the contractor how they plan to keep you updated on the progress of the project. Besides that, you should agree on how you can communicate with the contractor to ask any questions that you may have. Without communication, your dream property may end up turning into a nightmare.
7. Which Professional Organizations Do You Belong To
The law does not require joining an association for contractors. However, you want to ask a contractor this question since it shows the contractor has a commitment to the highest standards possible. Professional associations can be national or at the state level. These associations offer training and information on the latest technology to their members.
8. Do You Have a list of References
The reason you want to ask a contractor about their references is that you need proof of their claims to quality work. If a contractor does not have any references, you need to stay away from them. The references are amongst the few ways in which you can confirm that they will get the job done. When you do get the references, ask important questions such as how long it took and whether they were any negative incidents.
After getting satisfactory answers to your questions, ask to meet the foreman. Most contractors are pencil pushers who work in offices. They spend most of their time trying to bid for contracts. It is thus important that you meet the foreman in person and ask him a few questions. When you do that, your contractor will be incentivized to assign you his best crew. That way, you can know who to talk to if you find things are not going as you had planned.