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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 siteThe hiring of competent, dependable contractors to handle your property improvements and repairs can be one of the most difficult aspects of investing in Oshkosh single-family rental homes. Few investors have the time or resources to waste on employing a contractor who would blatantly produce subpar work. However, the truth is that there are con artists and other people out there who will attempt to scam you for 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

You need reputable contractors who can finish the job if you’re a property owner. It’s a good idea to hunt for industry experts you’ll be interested in employing time and time again to complete work for you. You can save a great deal of time and money by doing so. To find contractors with whom you can develop long-term business relationships, you have to start with research. Inquiring about recommendations from reliable property managers, real estate brokers, and other property owners is a fantastic place to start. You may look for prospective contractors online as well. Through comments from customers and even professional recommendations, several sites attempt to help with the screening of contractors.

Ask for References

Asking for references is another trick for finding a fantastic contractor (or two). A quality contractor will gladly provide you with a list of references who can testify to their experience. Once you have a contractor’s name, be sure to find out about their dependability, expense, responsiveness, and flexibility. Did they honor the agreed-upon price? How did they handle your issues and changes? Keep looking if you have any lingering concerns 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. Employing unlicensed contractors could expose you to significant liability for your rental property. A high volume of complaints or lawsuits is extremely unfavorable. The same holds if you have trouble getting the contractor to pick up the phone or return your messages. A few missed calls here and there might not necessarily suggest trouble, but if more than 24 hours go by with no reply, it’s time to search someplace else.

During the bidding procedure, there are additional red flags to watch out for. Consider keeping an eye out for things like negative internet reviews or eerily low costs, and avoid them if you find them. Additionally, it is recommended to avoid hiring any contractor who requests a substantial deposit upfront. Concern should be raised if the percentage exceeds 15%. The same holds if the contractor says that they are going to need an unlimited amount of time and materials, or if they make exorbitant assertions about how much they can do within a specific time frame. Finding someone who is continuously realistic about project expenses and completion dates is as important as finding someone who can work efficiently.

Focus on Quality

Once you have evaluated several potential contractors, request bids from them. The bid will outline how each contractor determines their prices and give you an idea of what you may anticipate paying for the work. Even while it could be tempting, resist the urge to accept the lowest offer, especially if it is much less than the others. Extremely cheap bids may occasionally be an indication that the contractor is attempting to get your business by offering a low price only to tack on extra fees later. They can also indicate that the contractor does not intend to secure the necessary work permits. Likewise, it is essential not to overpay for your contractor’s task. To be the most realistic, aim for the medium bid.

It may take a little while to start looking for the best contractors for your investment property’s repairs and improvements. 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 Lakeshore, which has established contacts throughout Oshkosh. Call us at 920-305-7077 for more information today.

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