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.
Serving the Hollywood Area.
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Whether your home needs a complete renovation, or a room needs to be repaired, there are some things to know before you hire.
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Worse company I have ever seen on a job site. No respect for property. Caused property damage to my brand new car, and tried telling me I was imagining it. That I need to go through the insurance company to get my windshield fixed from where they cause a crack in my windshield. Also, the owner of this company was out on the job, and told me he would not be paying for anything because I have no proof. Very unprofessional, and coming from an extremely professional commercial roofing company such as Best Roofing, I would never refer this company to anyone. If you want something done right, don’t call this company!
Decent place to live. However I moved out April 29,2018 and I still have not received my security deposit and no one will answer the phones or anything. I drove by one random day to try and catch someone in the office and of course no one was there. I just want my money back. I already spoke with a lawyer and I'm writing my letter and taking them to small claims court. this is beyond ridiculous. We're already in July and nothing.
This company promises good work, but does not deliver. My roof was done 8 years ago, by (John).A couple of weeks after the roof was done it started to leak. Several employees have been here, trying to plug this leak with no luck. After it rains here comes the leak. So I decided to call it quit with this place. I called Challenger Roofing and Marcos came over looked at what needed to be done and plugged the leak in 10 minutes. Something that Cherry Roofing could not do in 8 years. Now what does that tell you.
Thank you john! As a costumer this job and company has been nothing but reasonable and accommodating
Unless you are a new owner of cherry Roofing you are fully aware of the entire story as my attorney conferred to you. I was charged $4,500 for a single simple leak in a skylight. The incompetence of cherry Roofing Crow destroyed that entire side of my roof. Eventually I had to get a reputable contractor to do the entire side and of course pay for it. Both father and son of cherry Roofing denied any responsibility for the damage they caused. Again feel free to contact me if you want the details of this Horror Story.
ITS NICE TO HAVE TENANTS AND GET THEIR MONEY BUT WHEN OT COMES TO REFUND THEM THE DEPOSIT THEY ARE HORRIBLE .THEY DON'T ANSWER THEIR PHONES AT ALL AND NO ONE WILL CALL BACK. THE BUILDING MANAGER IS RUDE AND WILL NOT HELP UNLESS TO GET THE RENT AND HE DOES NOT LIKE TO DEAL WITH DEPOSIT REFUNDS .
Extremely helpful and professional. Would highly recommend to anyone looking for a trusted professional in a stressful situation.
I paid CHERRY ROOFING (3901 SW 40th Ave Hollywood FL 33023) the first payment on July 6th 2017 to replace my roof. I made it clear to them that I was hiring them to permanently resolve leaks in my roof and that time was of essence.After paying them 85% of the total amount they stopped working and returning my calls, texts and emails.It’s been over 5 months and they still have not completed the work for which I'VE HAD TO HIRE A LAWYER.Cherry Roofing service and quality is a disaster. It has been the worst experience I’ve had in 30 years with any building company. Unless you want months of problems DO NOT HIRE THIS COMPANY!
Beware of Cherry Roofing & the Cherry family.In July, I looked for a contractor to repair a flat roof leak. We found John Cherry of Cherry Roofing - he & Cherry Roofing both had excellent reviews. He was friendly & polite, saying Cherry Roofing had been in business for more than 50 years, goes the extra mile for their customers. He quoted first $500 to fix the roof. He came over with Cherry Roofing employees, climbed on the roof & came back to say the repair cost $1500. I told him to go ahead. He pointed out two more soft spots, but i didn't have have any more money that day.3 later, he called saying they'd finished a job in the area, had some extra materials, & could fix the soft spots for $300. I agreed. He came over with his brother Jimmy to put on a patch.In August, we started getting heavy rains & the original leak was still there. He told me it was a new leak & would to charge extra to fix it. I told him it was in exactly the same spot, so it was the same leak. He felt since he'd repaired the first, it couldn't be the same leak. I went off on him & he conceded that he needed to fix it & would be out on Friday. Here's how the Cherry family works - they promise they'll come out to get you off the phone, then they don't show up. After a few weeks of this, they stop answering when you call.John stopped taking calls, so I called their office. The owner, John's uncle Bobby, said that John & Jimmy don't work for him & scammed me. He told me he sympathizes with me & would "take care of me." If John doesn't work for him, why would he bother? I stayed in touch with him for several weeks & saw the same pattern - excuses, excuses, then Bobby stopped taking calls.They've got $1800 of my money. I have a roof that leaks.I'm not saying you will have the same experience but take my experience as a caution. They're happy to have good reviews that mention John or Jimmy by name, but if there are any complaints, "they don't work here."
Extremely reliable and honest. Cris came to my house exactly when they said he would, inspected the area, took pictures and showed me that the problem wasn't with the roof but was with some cracks in the second story concrete that goes into the roof on the first story. Thanks for being so helpful.
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.