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.
5482 Keswick DrFrisco, TX 75034
I can't speak to the actual quality of their work. However, I can speak about the mess they left on the curb. Rather than hauling off all the tile flooring they pulled up in my neighbor's kitchen, they boxed it up and left it on the curb. When we initially asked when they planned to haul off …
Plano, TX 75023
From Business: We provide many types of roofing services for the Collin County area. Our roofing contractors can repair minor damage, such as a leak, or replace an entire roof. At Brownlee Roofing and Gutters, our ultimate goal is to serve you and make your experience with us a pleasant one.
2 Indian TrlAllen, TX 75002
From Business: Giovanni’s is the unique company that will take your project from concept to creation, fulfilling your dream! John’s Designs are award winning and have been featured in “D” Magazine. We take care of it all from Custom water features, water/fire features, patio’s, arbors, pizza ovens, outdoor kitchen/grills, landscaping, so…
904 E Waggoman StFort Worth, TX 76110
The Lon Smith team was great. The inspected the roof within one day of the damage and Trent provided a through explanation of work to be completed. The work was completed timely and the roof looks great. Juan came out a day later to inspect the attic and follow up on any concerns. Lon Smith …
Garland, TX 75040
Nelson is an absolute delight to work with! He is professional, prompt, and has an eye for detail. Ours was a 3 week job that included gutter replacement, all exterior wood painted, along with major wood replacement. Nelson's team is polite, hard-working (sometimes putting in close to 12 hr d…
1301 Denton DrCarrollton, TX 75006
We were so impressed with the level of customer service that we received from BC Roofing, Siding & Windows, an established company in the local DFW area that has been in business for over 25 years. Brad Carver, company President, provided proof of liability insurance, is in good standing with th…
6429 Shorehaven CtFrisco, TX 75035
From Business: Curb Creations, Inc. has been assisting homeowners with their landscape improvements for over 6 years. I would greatly appreciate and welcome the opportunity to meet with you and give you a FREE ESTIMATE for your landscaping improvements. Curb Creations primary goal is to completely satisfy the needs and desires of you, th…
405 Brookfield DrGarland, TX 75040
Aegis re-roofed our house in one day! They improved our attic ventilation which helped to lower our summer cooling bills. They cleaned up as they worked and we have had no issues since they left. I will certainly use them again.
2807 Allen St # 825Dallas, TX 75204
From Business: Barry O Brien is the founder of Creative Construction and Remodeling and has been in construction industry for over 35 years and in the DFW Metroplex for over 17 years performing all forms of residential and commercial construction. We have been a proud member of the Better Business Bureau since 1997.With each and every pr…
2410 Glenda LnDallas, TX 75229
We had our old sunroom replaced and can't tell you what a joy it was working with this company. The construction was very fast, very clean and the quality was superior to our original sunroom. Wish I could post pictures, because it looks just like a room addition. Well constructed with quali…
Dallas, TX 75212
From Business: Thank you for considering Premier Associates. We know finding a contractor is never an easy task. Fortunately, we offer services in Remodeling, Plumbing, Tile, General Contractor work, and Water Damage Restoration. That means less time spent finding someone reliable when we can do it all. We have a large fleet of contracto…
Azle, TX 76020
Hank, Its been six months since you finished our addition and we still love it! Workmanship and quality are top notch and it looks as good now as when you finished it. Everyone who has visited has expressed how beautiful it look, feels and blends with the existing home. If you would like to use …
The Colony, TX 75056
We can't even begin to express our satisfaction with Don from Martin's Tile Works. We had our entire house remodeled from ceilings to floors. From start to finish Don came in and did an outstanding job and exactly on schedule as promised. He was professional, polite, clean and attentive to …
960 N Mill StLewisville, TX 75057
From Business: G&B Tile and Plaster, Ltd., located in Lewisville, TX is a professional swimming pool sub-contractor . Specializing in tile and coping installations, customer stonework, deck overlay systems and all plaster finishes for swimming pools for new construction projects, commercial projects and backyard renovations. We perform a…
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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I called to get an estimate for remodeling 2 bathrooms. I spoke to Kathy and wanted to get an estimate on labor only since materials will be what they will be and is best to compare against other quotes. She said they didn't do that and they weren't going to be the cheapest and I should likely look elsewhere. I was taken back at how bold and presumptive she was. Being a business person, this isn't the best way to earn business. I'm surprised they have so much business with her tone that they can be so selective and turn people away. I don't know about you but this isn't how I want to be treated when I'm spending $30,000. Her response tells me that they don't want to separate labor costs because they make so much profit on materials. Best to look elsewhere.
Well, I did get carpet, and the contractor installed it correctly. But I was assured (and Nadine's contract clearly said) that the old carpet would be hauled away. But it was not. It sat on my front lawn, killing the grass, while I waited patiently for a week before I started calling Nadine's. Any day now, they told me. But another week passed, and I started showing up at the store in person every few days to reiterate that the old carpet needed to go. Eventually, I got a letter from the city informing me that the carpet had to be hauled away by a certain date or I would be fined. I took the letter to the store, showed it to them, and asked for the dozenth time that they get this taken care of. Promises were made... but still, the carpet stayed where it was. Finally, I worked my way through their phone system until I got directly in touch with their installation manager, the man who schedules the independent contractors who do the installation. He was familiar with the situation, and told me that removing the old carpet was "a courtesy," not part of the contract, and that the salesman told him he had talked to me last week and I had AGREED that they could leave the old carpet for me -- a woman over sixty -- to deal with!I had been patient and polite for nearly a month, but I finally went off. I told him that was a flat-out lie, and carpet removal absolutely IS in the contract, and if the carpet wasn't gone by Friday, I would contact one of those consumer advocates on the local TV news stations and make a federal case of this.And that finally did it. The pile of carpet and pad was removed the next day. So yes, you CAN get perfectly good carpet from this company. But the culture at Nadine's is NOT one of professional integrity, and you may have to go through hell and high water to get what you contracted for. I certainly won't deal with those people again.
Had my countertops installed by economic granite , great experience , fast too! My kitchen looks very good . I will use them again for my bathrooms in the future . 5 stars !
We have used Randy Watson on several occasions, once for a leak adjoining our water pipe to our meter and once to install 2 hot water heaters. We did a lot of research on 2015 upgrades in heaters due to government regulations. Randy was very patient and answered all our questions. He installed 2 heaters on the evening of New Year's Eve. Did a great job, again.
I choose to build with Highland Homes because of the recommendation of my realtor. She considered them to be one of the best buildersin the Dallas area. I went under contract in December of 2013 and my home was finished at the end of September 2014. This was two months past the scheduled date. There's so much I could write in this review, but the highlights are that I'm extremely disappointed and would never buildwith Highland Homes again. I like the exterior of my home and it feels solid, but the interior finishing work was subpar at best. The trimwork is uneven and badly installed. The entire house had to be repainted because the first job had so manydrips and imperfections. The second paint job still looks bad. They caulked the baseboards to my floors, but unfortunately the person was very sloppy and the caulk is very noticeable. Everything throughout the house was painted with a waterbase paint which has begun to yellow and it's only been a little over a year. My neighbor has had her Highland home four years and has repainted twice because the baseboards looked so cream colored. There's been a long list of things they've had to come and fix, but most of the time the fix was a trade off because they dinged over damaged something else in the process. I've learned to just live with the imperfections. I'm so over this whole experience to write more, but I just want others to think twice before they buy with Highland. If this is one of the best builders in Dallas look out! I'd never build with them again! Way overpriced for the quality of work delivered.
Great Business offering amazing customer service, I highly recommend economic granite to anyone looking to have granite done at a great price. Our kitchen looks beautiful, and it was installed quickly with no hassle!
Brought two vehicles. Charged the equivalent of five for a simple job that took under an hour (not counting his 45 minute trip to Home Depot to buy a $5 part). If a guy tells you it's going to cost you this amount to fix something instead of offering a fair hourly rate, there's a reason. He's trying to make his day off of one sucker. Don't be the next one.
Ron will not warranty work until you force him (threatening law suit). He lies and really lacks knowledge to build a home. We have had six leaks in our home, door knobs that have fallen off, a front door with cracks in, had to repaint the home's exterior because paint was peeling off, wood floors rippling, and millwork that has been redone. This is all in a home that was over 1 million, allegedly custom, and 4 years old.
Randy arrived a little early, but he'd kept me updated. He was professional and friendly to all of the family. He gave us tips on how to avoid future problems as we experienced and he charged us less than he originally estimated for the work.I will use At-Ease Plumbing again!
A great experience!I hate contractors. Seriously most of them suck. So for me to take the time to write a review of one is nothing short of divine intervention. We first called Randy on a Saturday when we have a leak. Not only was he quick to respond, he was extremely considerate and, most importantly, reasonably priced. It didn't stop there. We're currently selling our home and were renovating a bathroom. On numerous occasions Randy came out to make sure the job was getting done on time and was working past 7 and 8pm. That's something that you don't get from anyone else.When our contractor ended up being a nightmare for the bathroom renovation Randy made sure to call my wife and I and let us know that he was going to find someone who would take great care of us. Long story short, the guys he recommended were phenomenal and the job got done better than we could have ever expected.My point in all this is to say that it's so rare to find people who actually care about what they do, treat people honestly and fairly and do business the right way. If you hate the normal runaround you get from plumbers then you would be stupid to not call At-Ease Plumbing. We've already told all our friends about them and will ABSOLUTELY be using them every single time.
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.