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.
1201 Fannin StHouston, TX 77002
From Business: Highly motivated and goal-oriented education professionals with years of notable success directing learners through their coursework that involves writing assignments. Instrumental in keeping learners moving through all the inescapable trials and tribulations of obtaining an undergraduate or graduate degree. Specialized in…
7800 Little York RdHouston, TX 77016
From Business: Louisiana Transportation is an over-the-road commercial carrier in the United States. The company utilizes owner operators, small fleet and several carrier partners to provide transportation services. Louisiana Transportation operates more than 85 terminals, over 70 freight agents and a solid brokerage division. It has a f…
12711 Club LnHouston, TX 77099
9814 Radio RdHouston, TX 77075
From Business: Universal Landscape Services, a full-service landscape firm, has satisfied Houston and Bay Area customers since 1978. I am proud of our roster of long -term clients and equally proud of our personnel who work diligently to ensure customer satisfaction. A quality landscape is an investment requiring professional management …
6110 Milwee StHouston, TX 77092
From Business: Universal Vending was started to aid individuals, investors and businesses who sought to invest in the vending business with the best cost for vending machines. Under the direction of Steven Fuchs, Universal Vending has done just that and more through his efforts of integrity, stewardship and keen business practices. Steve…
9326 Kay LnHouston, TX 77064
Mike Gustafson came early which was great. He was polite and courteous. He went to work quickly inspecting the job I needed and made quick work of the project. He explained the payment plans clearly. He did the work including asking my input where needed. He did a great job - and even cleared ou…
9242 Westpark DrHouston, TX 77063
Last month, my car wasnt working right and I needed to take it to a shop, I had one of Universal Transmission flyers so I called to check on the prices and timing, the manager was really nice and he took his time to explained what it could be and he also got my car towed for free and they did th…
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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Find out the questions to ask a roofing contractor and what's involved in repairing and replacing your home's roof.
Stillo did a very lengthy series of repairs on our house. What started as a seemingly small job mushroomed into a much larger job very quickly as a serious amount of underlying wood rot was discovered. All work included, Stillo performed about 6 months worth of intensive work, stripping off a significant amount of improperly installed stucco. The poor initial install had caused some walls to be so severely rotten that the old studs looked like pulp. As a former contractor myself, I was very discerning and thorough in the selection process leading up to selecting Stillo Construction for this job. Stillo was 1 of 5 contractors allowed the opportunity to bid out this job. With all factors considered, I decided Stillo was the most fair price given their extensive knowledge, experience, large crews, and attention to detail.Being a 6 month job, a few issues did come up. At one point, during the repairs, a tarp blew loose during a rainstorm, and some leaking resulted. Stillo repaired all of the minor damage without any argument, free of charge, and made it look as if nothing had ever happened.In the end, Stillo was contracted for numerous jobs. Every bit of work, or change to any work was very professionally handled through detailed, and itemized contracts. Stillo also provided their proof of insurance without me even requesting it. They provided a $1 million liability policy.Stillo did an excellent job with clean up, and considering that they virtually rebuilt the house, we could not be happier. All the paint was matched perfectly, tile work looks amazing, the stucco looks great, and was done to code, and built to last. Every step of the way, Frank was happy to show me the underlying rot, and justify any work that needed to be done. Fantastic work overall. Without a doubt, Stillo has to be the best Stucco contractor in the Houston area, if not in all of Texas. I would give this job a 6 our of 5 stars. Excellent work.
After reading Pristine Carpet Cleaning reviews from www.customerlobby.com from there website www.pristinecarpetcleanhouston.com, I knew this company was very professional and could take care of our cleaning needs. My pets do not like to go outside when it rains, needless to say, my house started smelling of pet odors. I Found a website that had a lot of info. about why my pets were going in the house (www.petodorremovalhouston.com), I ended up at www.carpetcleaninghoustonreviews.com and found out that it was another website of Pristine carpet cleaning and Jeff had all 5 star reviews (65), wow, this guy knows what he is doing. Once again, very professional. This company cleans only with the Rotovac Powerwand, the deepest cleaning that you can get done. Before the cleaning was to be done, I needed carpet stretching (www.carpetstretchinghouston.com) done because I had lots of ripples in my carpet, Pristine carpet cleaning gave me a 40% discount. Before picking pristine carpet cleaning, I was reading carpet cleaning reviews of another company here in Houston (deluxe carpet cleaning), once I read about six reviews of them, I knew this was a bad company. Called deluxe about some prices and Steve (the guy that answer the phone) was very rude once I told him I was checking out their prices only...This company even wanted to charge me a truck charge of $10 dollars for driving to my house, what kind of a rip off is that? Later, I found out that the owners name of deluxe carpet cleaning was Steve Smith, besides being very rude because I didn't set an appointment with him, I found out that this company was very shady. Dos: Read the companies reviews before you call them. It will save you a lot of time. Don'ts: Never assume that a company is good because it has a greater raking for your search
One day my husband and I noticed that there was a roof shingle on our lawn. A few days later there was another, then another, and fast forward to a few unexpected storms and strong winds later, we realized that we had to do something or we would have no roof left! I had no idea what a new roof would cost, or what repairs cost, but I was bracing myself for the worst. I made some calls (6-7) to various roofing companies around Houston to get an estimate. Many of these so called reputable companies did not return my call, and just now (2 weeks and thunder storms later) are returning my call. After a few estimates and research for knowledge of roofing materials and the process....we decided to go with Andy Nichols Roofing. The reasons: Mr. Nichols came to our home and really spent time on inspecting our roof and explaining the process to us. He offered a multitude of financing options to suit our needs and his pricing was very reasonable, no where near the astronomical amount that I feared. Mr. Nichols even took the extra time to meet our insurance adjuster to point out the issues that he noticed to our roof. After all is said and done, a few days later we have a brand new roof and we are very happy with it! The crew was professional, Mr. Nichols was thorough and meticulous with the work, and I am confident we made the right choice. A definite recommend.
This company is as awesome as it gets. After calling another company to fix my A/C who gave me the typical "Your Compressor is out, and it will cost $1650.00" and temporarily fixed it, my A/C failed again for 2 more days, and after calling over 30 companies in 2 days for emergency Air Conditioning repair, Air Tech was the only ones that took the time to come out and fix my Air Conditioner. Not only did they fix my Air Conditioner (which turned out to be bad capacitors and dirty coils) but the Technician BILLY JR, had a great attitude, and great customer service. Not only that, but, what originally would have been $289.00 for coming out in the middle of the night and another $300 or so for, replacing 2 capacitors, cleaning the coils, adding freon and doing an inspection etc, he cut me a break at $89.00, which is not something that typical air conditioner companies do, trust me. I believe he went above and beyond what was expected of him, and my family and I are really appreciative of him and his company. He has our loyalty for the rest of the time we are living in this area. We are so glad to have called Air Tech, his magnet is on our fridge and we will call again if another problem arises, or we need an inspection. Thank you so much Billy and Air Tech.
WHY would you have to have your employees pose as customers to put fake online reviews?Lynette Rushing is a $10 an hour telemarketer for them posting fake reviews online including Yelp, FAKE!! Additionally, although they claim to do back ground check on ALL their employees, Ms. Lynette Rushing is a former corrections employee who was arrested, removed from her position and served a sentence!! They also had a CONVICTED FELON who had been in prison working for them as well!OMG Who are they letting into your office unsupervised?This company has its people in offices UNSUPERVISED! You have to wonder what they are doing. They have NO good reviews....makes ya wonder why right! Would not recommend! Avoid like the plague! **ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK----YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!**Additionally, Capitol Professional Cleaning Service CLAIMS writer was an "employee" and that writer was terminated. If that is true, then LEGALLY They should be able to provide documents to prove such a statement ex: signed job application, SS card, picture ID. All of which under Federal Law are required PRIOR to hiring someone...where is the proof?
To Our Roofing Surprise!Our family would like to thank Holden Roofing for our beautiful new roof. The color selection we chose is unique and makes our house stand out in our neighborhood. We had no idea how easy the process would be to replace our old roof. Holden came out around 7:00am and was done by noon. My daughter and I went out around 12:30 because we no longer heard any hammering. We went to check to see if the roofers were on lunch break, we couldn't believe our eyes; the roof was finished and absolutely stunning! This is our second house and our second roof for our family, this project was by far the best experience with any construction, roof repair, replacement, or any renovation at that we have ever experienced. Holden brought forth a level of precision, professionalism, and time management we had never seen. Also the clean-up was great! We have not yet found any leftover materials or nails around the house! Holden Roofing we are proud to say that we will use your company in the future and suggest to our friends, family, or anyone wanting a top-notch roofing job done on their home! 5 Star Roofing Company!
Recently, we had our entire roof replaced since it had suffered from hail damage. Texas Roofing & Gutters crew carried out the whole operation in a very efficient and professional manner. As promised, the work was completed in two days. The team was very good about cleaning up all the areas around the house to ensure all the material, including nails, were picked up.Throughout the process, it was a pleasure working with Jonas Perez starting from the initial inquiry, through the free estimation and bidding steps ... all the way to the actual scheduling of the work. Jonas was diligent about properly explaining the process and was eager to visit our place just to answer our questions before the work began. He also went beyond the normal call of duty to ensure we were thoroughly satisfied with their service. Their pricing was very competitive and Jonas was kind enough to include couple of minor additional items without additional charges.We will definitely keep Texas Roofing & Gutters in mind for future home repair work ... as they do a lot more than just Roof & Gutter related work.Thanks Jonas & the rest of the crew!
After going through the same failed and not to mention costly affect every year of trying to' fix it" on my own or get it fixed, I had to finally take the advice of my cousin (and Glad I did) to join the Hubbard Mendoza team, and I must admit I've never been More! pleased with such a personal part of my life. The kindness, warmth, knowledge, professionalism, & not to mention the one on one attention that catered and tailored to my needs was something that was very outstanding. The rate of service you recieve from the staff there is just impeccable. I not only got through this year tax season but was counseled on prior tax statements and issues and got them resolved. The rates are great! and everything is straight forward. I like it when I can ask questions and get answers.... Who wouldn't.? The team is just Honest andTtrue to what they do and love..... I thank you Mrs. Mendoza you changed my life for the better , because we all know that when your finances are in a shamble your life is too a lot of what we do is all about the money......I'm on board The Hubbard Mendoza Team!!
After having my blower motor replaced by another AC repair business who tried to push me into a expensive duct replacement, I continued to experience problems with the air circulation. After calling this same company back who did a quick visit and again pushed for the duct replacement, the problem persisted. I myself went into my attic and even though I heard the fan turning, I felt no air flow before the cooling coils which raised some obvious flags. At this point I felt a bit disenfranchised with that company and contacted Manny at ZOLO AIR who promptly showed up within the 1 hour time frame I requested. He and his assistant wasted no time going into the attic to diagnose the issue. Seriously, in 4 minutes he discovered that the other company had connected the fan motor backwards. I spent more time helping Manny with his new phone than he needed to correct the issue. He only charged for the basic service call which was a amazingly fair price. He has earned our trust for future business transactions. 5 stars all the way!
Naturalcare just serviced my home. This house has not been this clean...ever! Seriously – I don’t believe it has been this clean since we moved in two decades ago. The cleaning technicians were prompt and courteous. They needed little direction and were very interested in my satisfaction. They took great care in working around my 87 year old mother. Here’s the thing. When I pay a service to clean my home, I want it thoroughly cleaned and scrubbed. I’d never been concerned about harsh chemicals because I thought it was what you had to use to get the kind of clean that I wanted. Imagine my delight and surprise when Naturalcare Cleaning Service made my home cleaner and fresher than it has ever been - and they accomplished this without harsh and harmful chemicals. The last service I used for a thorough spring cleaning charged me much more and accomplished much less. I enthusiastically recommend Naturalcare Cleaning Service. Naturalcare is now an integral part of our household. Thank you!
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.