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.
7519 Atchinson Dr SEOlympia, WA 98513
From Business: Better Homes Home Improvement Inc. is a family owned business, which has been serving the greater western Washington area since 1970. We are remodeling contractor…
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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Bayshore Construction is by far the best company my wife and I dealt with while building our home, and the only company we would recommend to anyone else. Brandon and his staff repeatedly bent over backward to make our project work with all the schedule delays (due to other companies). Due to their efforts we never had to wait for them to finish any stage of the project, which is huge when our 7 month build turned into 16 months. They always answer the phone and respond to emails, and will keep you updated as phases of your project are completed, you are never left wondering what is going on. On a more personal note if there were more people like Brandon in business people would never feel like they were being cheated or lied to. Not only did he constantly work around our builder's terrible and unpredictable schedule to get our work done, there was a situation that arose where I had to do some work on the house myself. Brandon came out and met me at my property, on his time, and taught me how to do the work that needed to be done. Nothing that was in our bid, and work that his crews were not going to do. You don't find customer service like that very often, if ever. Can't speak enough about how good of a person he is.Whenever any work I need done comes up that Bayshore provides, I will always use them, regardless of price or how long I have to wait on their schedule. I know I will be getting the best service and will be completely satisfied with their work.
After David finished installing the wood flooring downstairs, we were left with extra wood flooring and decided to also replace the carpet in the game room and hallway upstairs. David was able to fit us in immediately with no downtime, even though he was planning a trip out of town. It is this type of professionalism and the added personal touch, that keeps us coming back! The upstairs flooring was complete in a day and a half, with the furniture moved back to its original place, all the debris removed and all work areas neat and clean. David and New Era Remodeling, comes highly recommended by our family!
Life Saver / Great Contractor:We only had a week to prepare our house for sale because my husband got a new job in another State. NewEraRepairs.com was referred to us by a friend. We also read a lot of good reviews about this company online. Without any hesitation, we gave the house key to David Sabet, the owner of New Era and hit the road. David kept us informed by emails on daily bases and sent us pictures as the project progressed. They fixed some cracks in walls & ceilings and painted the interior of the house; fixed some doors and windows; re-finished the kitchen cabinets, the front door, and some varnished steps of the stairway which were badly scratched by our dogs; did some beautiful landscaping; did some electrical and plumbing as well. They worked very well with our Realtor too. They worked around the clock to get the house ready on time for the Realtor. Amazingly, the house was sold in 2 weeks after the repairs were done. David is a life saver! Five stars are just too few for these guys – they deserve 10! Oh, by the way, their price was fabulous and the quality of work were confirmed by the Realtor to be great! What a great experience! What a great contractor!
Terrific Handyman:We had a water pipe burst in our front lawn last night so we called our favorite handyman to come to our rescue. He came late in the evening, turned off our water and assessed the damage. Came back this morning and spent most of the day repairing the pipe broken due to root growth. He charged me almost half of what I paid the last plumber who was at my home 45 minutes. If you need anything done around your home, I would start by calling David Sabet - he is terrific and can do just about anything. If he can't tackle the job he will tell you and recommend someone that can.David SabetNew Era Remodeling & Repairsservice@newerarepairs.comwww.newerarepairs.com469-288-6418
Refurbished our Chandelier: $850David of New Era Remodeling & Repairs did an excellent job refurbishing our chandelier. Cleaned the entire chandelier (3’x5’) and replaced missing parts. It now looks like new. Next week, he will be cleaning 3 more chandelier for us. He does excellent job!
Professional, Courteous, and Friendly Contractor:New Era Remodeling & Repairs was recommended to me by a neighbor. I had just had an upgrade done to our home by another local contractor that was nothing short of a struggle. Needless to say I was very Leary about how to select another contractor for any additional work on my home. I asked David if he would be interested in giving me a bid on repainting my wrought iron fence around the yard. He arrived promptly, took only 10 minutes to survey the job and provide me a verbal estimate. We agreed to a price and when I asked him when he could to the job he responded "How about tomorrow" (Saturday)... As promised that afternoon he delivered the paint and products. As promised his crew arrived at 7:15 a.m. on Saturday to start the job. His crew was professional and very courteous and friendly. They complete the job by 1:00 p.m. as promised. My wife and David went over several other jobs that she requested bids from him on. The first job he did was flawless. We will no doubt schedule a few more projects for David and continue to evaluate his work. But for now, based on the first job, I can recommend him as a very skilled and competent contractor that will perform exactly as he tells you he will. I look forward to working with him in the future and will update my review as jobs are completed.
Good ContractorShowed up for appointment on time; provided detailed written estimate; Started the project on time and did a good job. Painted the interior walls, doors, and ceilings. Repaired eaves and fascia, repaired roof, repaired and stained the fences, and did some landscaping. Also did some plumbing and electrical work. Refinished 2 tubs and a shower pan. Replaced the carpet in 1 room. Re-grouted and caulked 2 bathroom walls and re-finished some cabinets. After the buyer inspector gave us his report, we hired New Era again to do a few other minor repairs and sold the house just 2 weeks ago. New Era’s prices were good too.
Exceeded Our ExpectationsWe contacted 3 contractors to remodel our home for preparation for sale. Only 1 of them responded with a detail and competitive estimate. We liked the way the owner of New Era, David Sabet, professionally responded to our needs and we decided to hire him immediately. He and his crew remodeled two bathrooms, painted one bedroom, repaired some walls, replaced all the carpets, and installed hardwood floor in the office above and beyond our expectations. We enjoyed doing business with him and his crew. They worked in our house for 3 weeks. They showed up every day on time and clean up after themselves at the end of every day. David informed us of the progress of the project on daily bases. Their work did not alter our comfort at home. They Exceeded our expectations in many ways.
this is not the phone number for a business it is a homeowner that does not appreciate early morning calls. Can you blame him?
To "mark l" we have looked up this person I have never done work for a "mark l". Are bbb rating speaks for its self. Perhaps you have used a fake name and are hiding behind your computer. Thanks Todd Laney
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.