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 Mount Airy Area.
Coupons & DealsFree Delivery and Installation on the Carports and Metal Garages in 30 States in the USA.
I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was to do business with Alan. The shed I ordered was top rate and looks great. His customer-centered metho…
Whether your home needs a complete renovation, or a room needs to be repaired, there are some things to know before you hire.
This review is about unethical sales practices at Mayberry. I called to plan a building with an experienced sales agent. I will call this agent Steve.I told Steve everything I needed in a 30 x 40 building, EVERYTHING! Including how much I had to spend on it. We covered it all. I signed electronically, and payed the down payment. I was told to call and schedule a date to start. I wasn't on the line with this person 10 seconds when she ask "what are you doing for garage doors"? I thought I was getting roll up doors like Steve had disscribed. I bought a building with NO GARAGE DOORS from a sales agent with 27 years of experience. HE knew how much I had to spend, he stopped right at the #. Steve would not let me out of the contract, Steve hung up on me before telling me it would cost $686 to cancel. Steve called it a misunderstanding, I call BS.
Ordered June 1, 2016, was told 3-4 weeks, submitted a question on their Facebook page and told 2-4 weeks depending on structure, called, spoke to Sophia and told 4-6 weeks, depending on how long it takes to get enough sales/quota to schedule delivery/install for our area, emails go unanswered, several calls to get an ETA, finally have a date of July 26, putting us at 8 weeks from purchase date, no offer of compensation for all these delays and delivery/install quotes keep changing. Holding a customers life hostage, No wonder this company has a 'F' rating with the BBB, Order at your own risk, be prepared to put your life on hold waiting for delivery, buyer beware !
No stars, F- . Do not buy from them. They install for carport.com, so I would avoid them too. Carports.com (with an s is ok and suggested). Ordered a simple carport online Aug 31, 2015. Had to cancel Jan. 16, 2016 due to non delivery. Ordered for a house I was building so I had to drive 40 miles each time they did not show up. Sometimes, they did not bother to call on scheduled day of delivery to say they were not coming. Very poor scheduling, communication, and service. Avoid these companies. 7 installations were scheduled, all failed. When Paula did call to cancel Dec. 16, I told her ok but 1 more failure to deliver and I would cancel and expected to have my $85 deposit returned. She agreed. Holiday, did not reschedule until Jan. 14. No show. Cancelled, ask for refund, she said 2-3 days. Not until Feb 5, when I called back, did she tell me that I would have to talk to Elephant Structures (carport.com) about refund, and contract said no refunds.7 No Shows. Lousy, 200+ BBB complaints.
HBO Carports Inc.Phone: (866) 789-9930 Fax: (336) 789-9931 998 West Pine Street, Mount Airy, NC 27030Better Business Bureau Rating of F!!!!!Can't get any worse than F!!!!Check their Better Business Bureau rating here > http://www.bbb.org/northwestern-north-carolina/business-reviews/carports/hbo-carports-inc-in-mount-airy-nc-235958218/
We received a quote from this company for a home addition. We agreed with the pricing and the owner provided us with a contract to review. We reviewed that contract, and he made minor revisions to the wording and sent back to us to sign. We signed the contract and scanned it to back to him. We were told he would start in September of last year, but he never showed up. He would make a few excuses over the next few months, until he ran out of them. He stopped responding to calls, texts and emails and even ignored a certified letter that we sent to his business. As a way to get out of the very contract he wrote, he simply ignored the very contract he submitted to us to sign. It took our filing a complaint with the BBB to get a response out of this builder. Even then, it was more undocumented excuses. I think every builder owes it to the other party on the contract to communicate and to be honest. It is unethical to simply change your mind and to feel you can 'withdraw a bid', after the legal contract is signed, without ever bothering to inform the other party. If we had known this would happen, we never would have wasted our time on this builder.
Mr Hawkins did work that was very professional. I would definitely recommend him for all of your building needs.His web: juniorhawkinsconstruction.com
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.