Many jobs around the house can be done yourself. If you’ve got a minor remodeling project or some maintenance that needs doing, you can save yourself some money by doing it alone. But there are also many projects that should be left to the pros. If you’re going to bring in a remodeling contractor, it’s important to treat him/her well. Here are six things every contractor wishes you knew.
You don’t have to be an expert
Contractors can appreciate the fact that homeowners care a lot about their homes. And many homeowners will have done a lot of research about the project they’re having done and will have a lot of input. That’s fine. But don’t forget that the contractor is the expert and you’re the homeowner. Feel free to give a detailed explanation of what you want but don’t tell him/her what to do. Leave the expertise to the expert and get out of the way.
Declutter before the contractor arrives
This is good for you and the contractor. It’s good for you because you’re not paying the contractor for basic cleaning up which you are perfectly capable of doing yourself. It’s also good for the contractor who is probably quite busy and wants to get right to work. If you know that the contractor will need to access a certain area, move furniture or any other items out of the way so he/she can set up a ladder or do whatever it is they need to do.
Don’t involve him/her in spousal disputes
If you’ve got a spouse or significant other, decide as a couple what you both want before you call up a contractor. The worst thing for a contractor is when the husband wants one thing and the wife wants another. So get on the same page and then bring in the contractor. Don’t put him in the middle of a domestic dispute.
Keep pets out of the way
If you have pets, make arrangements for them to be out of the way. If it’s a longer, larger project, that may mean temporarily re-homing them with a close friend or family member. If you can restrict them to a section of the home or yard where they won’t be in the way, that’s fine too. During the course of a project, the contractor may be going in and out to fetch tools or materials and they don’t want to be responsible for a dog that tries to escape every time the door opens.
Add-ons aren’t free
Contractors don’t work for free. If you brought them in for one specific task, don’t expect them to do some minor side project without charging for it. Be up front about what you want from the beginning and if you find another task for the contractor, ask him/her what would be the charge for taking care of it.
Communicate the details
Contractors can’t read minds, unfortunately. Don’t leave it up to the contractor to know what it is you want. It’s a good idea to have a sit-down with the contractor before work begins to outline exactly what it is you want in great detail.