What to Know About: General Contractors »
Whether your home needs a complete renovation, or a room needs to be repaired, there are some things to know before you hire.
11331 E 58th StTulsa, OK 74146
Late evening I had a "no heat" emergency that occurred when temps dropped to 15 degrees. It could have been very bad but wasn't because 1) Marvin re…
610 W 41st StSand Springs, OK 74063
From Business: Affordable Asphalt is a family owned and operated company that has been fulfilling the greater Tulsa metro area paving needs for twenty years. We have been a memb…
204 E 15th StTulsa, OK 74119
From Business: Oklahoma Electrical Supply Company, also known as OESCO, maintains offices in Oklahoma City and Tulsa in Oklahoma. The company offers a range of electrical contra…
Serving the Broken Arrow Area
From Business: As a mechanical contracting firm, Wattie Wolfe Co. is justly proud of the role it plays in helping develop the building industry into a fully functional tool for …
1425 S 133rd East AveTulsa, OK 74108
From Business: Payment Methods (O):cash or check (O):www.harrisondrilling.com General Information (O):Piers-Foundation Repairs-French Drains-Bell Bottoms Hours of Operation (O):…
Whether your home needs a complete renovation, or a room needs to be repaired, there are some things to know before you hire.
The overall experience was excellent and I would recommend this company to anyone without hesitation. Now let me get into the details. It started by a phone call to Jason and telling him I have a leak in one of my rooms and that I have no idea how this all works. He was so professional and knowledgeable. He worked with me to find the time that worked for me and then came by and inspected the roof, then he gave me a detailed step by step on how the whole process works including my interactions with my insurance company, and mortgage company. The process went exactly the way he described from beginning all the way till the end. Now, let me talk about the day the guys came out to replace my roof. The job was completed and they left and you wouldn’t even know there was work being done from how clean they left my place. I didn’t find one nail or anything left behind. They did a great job in completing the job and leaving the place clean. Now let me talk about the folks that came and did the interior repair. I wish I remember their name. They were hired by Jason and his company. They are great folks. They also did the job and left with my room super clean and you wouldn’t know that I had any repair done. My ceiling looks great and you can’t tell there was a repair. They worked with me on my busy schedule and were very flexible with days and times. I was so nervous and worried but I am not going to lie, Jason did a great job by being transparent and clear in his description of the process. I would recommend Home Again Roofing to anyone. They are great people. Also, they do free roof inspection so even if you are not sure that you need a roof, just call Jason and ask him to come take a look and allow yourself to be in safe hands with a great company like this one.
First time home builders with a terrible experience. Day 1 we were told that our home plan was "measured exactly for this particular lot". Paid $2000 to have the plan redrawn to fit. Were told that the neighborhood covenant states we were required to have a 2000sq ft house in this neighborhood, therefore, we would have to pay to add 70 sq ft to our house... which would not fit on the lot, so then we would need to make it two story... then it would have to be a minimum 2400sq ft. We found the covenant online and it clearly stated a minimum single story house would be 1500sq ft.We were terribly mislead by many of the "included features" which somehow later became "upgrades" when they were showing up in our house as it was being built. Saleswomen Barbara's favorite phrase is "I never said that." Do not be fooled.They only used $550 on our landscaping when the covenant clearly states builders will spend a minimum of $1000. Still haven't received an answer as to why and its been over a month with one question they can't seem to answer.Do NOT use this builder. Terry Davis or Shaw. Liars, cheaters, no knowledge of any neighborhood rules and regulations. Seems like its build and goodbye.
Purchased a new home in January. Moved in February. The touch up was not done properly.had the subs out a few times to correct some problems. In April they quit trying to help with problems. I sent letter and pictures in May. They have not responded even after I emailed them and ask when would they fix problems.I guess the one year warranty they say they honor is not good at all. I work for a company who provides building materials for this company, I will recommend they discontinue.Service is first in my business. Not this one.Any contact they have ever had has been at their convenience.I would not recommend this company to anyone.
I have had so many issue with the warranty company they make it sound like when your building any issues they will be right out so not true. You must wait till your 11 month like we are dumb and don't know what they are trying to do wait so they can do the job quick probably not quality work and not have to come back out because by then the warranty will be up. My paint is horrible very cheaply done for the cost I paid for this house the material should've been the best. I even asked about the paint before the process started it's a very frustrating situation for a new homeowner and seeing the paint chipped and paint on the base boards. My master bedroom has a huge crack line in it from probably too much plaster being used. The list goes on basically do your research a little better then I did I thought I picked a good company but I guess I didn't. So much for my dream house now it's just became a horrible nightmare.
Loved our house layout and the building process seemed to be going well. As soon as we moved in we noticed that the quality of the paint was terrible. Within a few days of being moved in the house was full of paint chips. We have lived in several different places, including apartments that tend to use cheap paint and the paint used on our house was even worse. When we tried to wipe the walls with a damp cloth the paint and the texture wiped off. When we tried to talk to the builder about this they almost ignored us and claimed paint isn't covered under the warranty. It's unbelievably annoying to pay 260k for a brand new house and within two months have the paint look like a 10 year old paint job. It's even more annoying to spend this kind of money and have your concerns ignored. Before the process even started we asked the design studio about the paint they would be using, she assured us that it would be fine and it would wear well. This has not been the case and I strongly discourage you from using them as a builder or Shaw homes as they are now the same company.
There has perhaps never been a better tool for do-it-yourself home handymen than the internet. With detailed instructions and videos explaining how to perform a number of common maintenance and renovation tasks around a house, an untrained homeowner might be surprised at how much he or she can accomplish with a quick search online. But even with all of this information, there are still many jobs that lie far outside the scope of most DIY enthusiasts. General contractors are there to fill in this gap.
A general contractor specializes in seeing a home remodel or repair project through from start to finish. To do this, the contractor works with the client - whether they are a homeowner or business - to nail down the scope of the work. Then he or she will turn to one or more subcontractors for specific tasks, like equipment operation, design, electrical work or whatever else is needed.
In essence, general contractors could be thought of as middlemen between a homeowner or business owner and any number of specialists. To get their money's worth, many assume they should just "cut out the middleman" and hire specialists directly, but this often proves more difficult in practice. General contractors won't be completing an entire project by themselves, but should have a long list of dependable experts who can work together and accomplish any task. They might also serve as the manager on the site of a construction project, overseeing workers and providing guidance and assistance when needed. For larger projects, though, the contractor might only handle administrative matters and employ a foreman or other professional for on-site supervision.
There are many general contractors who also specialize in certain tasks themselves. There is usually at least one general contractor on hand to organize the construction of an entire home, for example. But general contractors could also help a homeowner add an additional bedroom, build an in-ground pool or complete a major landscaping project. They could also work with a business to add or improve office space, whether that means making more room or converting a commercial building from a nail salon to a restaurant. Basically, if it's a job that involves building or repairing, a general contractor probably knows how to get it done.
No matter what the exact job may be, a contractor will probably need to accomplish several other essential tasks in pursuit of the ultimate goal, which may include:
Every general contractor performing any kind of work on a project must be licensed to do so in their state. The guidelines for the specifics on licensing vary from state to state. Some states might only require registration of contractors, which is different from licensing. Registration typically means that there must be a written record of what work is being performed and by whom, but it does not guarantee professional knowledge. Licensing, on the other hand, involves an examination process to assess professional competence.
Whether your state requires licensing or registration of contractors, there should be a record of most professionals willing to complete certain projects in your area. Check your state or county website for more information. In states that require licensing, every licensed contractor's contact information is available online or from another public source.
Not every project needs to be completed by a licensed or registered contractor. If it's just a minor job that won't take more than a day or two, and will cost less than a few hundred dollars, it's likely not necessary to find a licensed or registered contractor. However, anything bigger or more expensive, or a project involving plumbing or electrical work, needs to be completed by a licensed or registered professional.
General contractors also must be covered by an insurance policy. This should include liability coverage for any property damage that could be inflicted in the course of a job. It should also include a worker's compensation policy in case anyone is injured on the job. Before hiring a contractor for anything, ask for written proof of this insurance to see exactly what is covered.
A number of trade associations for contractors in the U.S. exist. Some of the biggest include:
Most trade associations for general contractors will provide references for anyone looking to hire a contractor for a specific project. They may also provide a number of benefits for their members, including assistance with licensing, training, insurance and business development.
No matter what you need accomplished, you want to choose a contractor who can get the job done right at a reasonable price. Obviously, this is easier said than done, but there are a few steps you can take to ensure you find a trustworthy general contractor.
The first, and perhaps most reliable, way to find a general contractor is to ask friends and family members for a recommendation. If you know anyone who has had major work done on their home, particularly if it's a similar job, ask them who they hired and if they were pleased with the result. You could also ask neighbors about who they've hired if you notice work being done on their house. Many remodeling contractors post signs in front of homes to advertise their services. As a general rule, it's rarely a good idea to hire a contractor who solicits work by going door to door.
If you are considering hiring a contractor without a personal recommendation, ask the contractor for references from past clients, and do as much background research on them as possible. Look for any complaints (or compliments) online to get a better idea of their track record. There are a number of websites specializing in connecting contractors with people or businesses who need work done. These sites may also allow past clients to submit their own reviews of the contractor.
Before hiring a contractor, make sure you are both in agreement on the project's budget. It's normal for most contractors to charge clients a premium not only for the labor expenses and zoning expertise, but for acquiring the materials as well. Be as clear and concise as possible regarding what you'll be purchasing yourself and what you will be paying the contractor to complete. Homeowners may be able to find a better deal on raw materials when they purchase these directly, but they first need to be sure they aren't buying the wrong things.
Don't forget to discuss how the project will be finalized and what will be done about cleanup. Plans for how the work site will be cleaned at the end of each day as well as at the conclusion of work need to be put in writing. An experienced general contractor should make every effort to keep the workspace clean and prevent dirtying or damaging any other area. Even so, talk with the contractor about the daily schedule, the logistics of transporting workers and equipment, and how cleanup will be handled.
As previously mentioned, you need to make sure to follow any state and local regulations regarding construction work, which includes hiring a licensed or registered general contractor. Ask the contractor for proof of their certification before signing anything, as well as their proof of insurance. You should also check your homeowners insurance policy to see if they offer coverage for contracted work. You may want to call your insurance provider and ask for more details on what your plan will and won't cover.
Perhaps the best way to feel safe about a contractor and the work being done is to hire a contractor you trust. This is why relying on personal references from friends and family is so important, and will often provide a great deal of peace of mind. If you aren't able to obtain a reference, work to conduct extensive research on the contractor as well as the work you are hiring them to perform. This should bring everyone's expectations into alignment and result in a safe work environment.
Before any money changes hands, there should be a contract to sign. Make sure the specifics of the work to be done and all costs are listed in the contract, right down to the most precise details. If you forget to have something included in the contract after signing it, there's rarely a chance of recourse.
Once the specifics of the job are nailed down, be sure to discuss the payment schedule with the contractor. This is important because paying too much up front offers the homeowner minimal leverage if the quality of work does not meet expectations or contractual specifications. Try to establish a reasonable pay schedule with the contractor, such as paying 10 percent of the total cost for each 10 percent of the work that is completed. It's a good idea to include this payment plan in the contract as well.
Finally, look into getting a lien release signed before work begins. If there is ever a dispute regarding payment over the course of the project, a contractor or subcontractor could place a payment claim, or lien, on your property. This can trigger a long legal process that may be frustrating. To avoid this, ask the contractor to sign a lien release, which is a legal agreement that states that any payment accepted is final. This can come in handy if a contractor has his or her own payment issues with their subcontractors. Signing a lien release form certifies that any payment made by a client to the contractor is enough to pay for any goods or services rendered. A lien dispute could also be prevented by performing due diligence prior to picking a contractor, as any contractor with good credit and a long track record of satisfied clients should have no trouble paying for materials and labor once all contract conditions have been met.
Once work is underway, it's never a bad idea to check up on the progress of the job, either by staying in touch with the contractor over the phone or visiting the site in person. If you work with a trustworthy professional, it's probably best to keep your distance and allow everyone to stay busy. If you want to keep an eye on things, make sure workers wear the right safety gear and that everything looks to be moving along according to schedule. Finally, once work is finished and you are satisfied, be sure to thank your contractor and tell friends or family members about your experience.