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 Sugar Land Area
From Business: Basco Construction Inc. is a reputable Construction Company that offers a wide range of services to both the commercial and residential market. Typically our work involves larger commercial projects. Basco Construction Inc. is a customer-focused company that has over a half of a century's experience in general building and…
3814 Woodlace DrHumble, TX 77396
From Business: Hello, and welcome to Paint by Room & Home Restoration where we'll make your life easier in many aspect of services. We now just do painting, we do general contracting, flooring, Water restoration, Kitchen and Bathroom Remodeling and much much more!!. We cover the Entire Houston area and are ready for you call. Call us tod…
930 Houston AvePasadena, TX 77502
From Business: We are your one stop solutions for all of your flooring, painting and remodeling needs. Why pay the high prices for the national chains? All you are paying for is the name. Don't let the company name determine the price of your job. Let us show you what quality is at an affordable price. Call us today!
1002 Airline DrKaty, TX 77493
From Business: Mary Roberts, owner of Katy Kitchen & Bath, is a woman with a passion for design. She works tirelessly to find the perfect details to update or completely remodel your kitchen, bath, bedroom, den or office. Mary is a dealer for many astounding lines of cabinet makers and has seemingly endless choices for counter tops, tile…
14019 Southwest Fwy # 301-321Sugar Land, TX 77478
I had a problem with a drain/vent issue in a house and called to ask them to perform a service that I thought would help. Ann called one of their master plumbers who diagnosed the problem over the phone, told me he would be glad to come out to look, remove the toilet and mini-cam the line but th…
Serving the Sugar Land Area
From Business: North American Dismantling is a leading nationwide demolition contractor specializing in heavy industrial demolition, commercial building strip outs, specialty bu…
11150 S Wilcrest DrHouston, TX 77099
From Business: The Mundy Companies provides various services, including loading and unloading, packaging, railroad operations, security, warehousing, and janitorial. The company assists its customers with capital projects, such as debottlenecking, expansions and modifications to existing units. Its employees perform various maintenance f…
5222 Fm 1960 Rd W Suite 214Houston, TX 77069
1105 Northville StHouston, TX 77038
From Business: Welcome to Barnier Building Systems Inc.! rnrnBarnier Building Systems, Inc. is a full-service general contractor with the ability to provide quality general contracting services. You can do nothing great without a great team. We have completed many design/build projects including, but not limited to churches, schools, fac…
6222 Gessner Rd Ste DHouston, TX 77041
From Business: Arrow Foundation Company Inc. offers foundation repair and drilling services. We also bellbottom piers by hand, a traditional industry practice that few companies still do. We are proud members of the Foundation Repair Association, the Better Business Bureau and Angies List. Arrow Foundation Company Inc. is committed to en…
10005 W Sam Houston Pkwy NHouston, TX 77064
From Business: Today, customers can really get more from John Moore. With our complete home diagnosis, service capabilities, and finance options, you can get more done by the team you know best. Our #1 goal is finding sustainable repair, maintenance and renovation solutions that improve your home and your quality of life for years to com…
3636 W 12th StHouston, TX 77008
From Business: Founded in 1968, Superior Building Systems offers a range of design and build solutions for commercial and residential clients. The company has constructed more than 2,500 projects, including complex industrial parks, office facilities and warehouse buildings. It has expertise in the development of engineering plans and sp…
11745 Jones RdHouston, TX 77070
After hurricane Ike we had quite a few other quotes for other roofing companies, but by and far they were they best, not just because of price, but all they offered in their quote. So many times when you receive a quote and at the end of a project the estimate is not what you end up paying, but …
6133 Selinsky RdHouston, TX 77048
I am very disappointed with this company for the lack of community responsibility. My windshield was damaged by the company's vehicle and I was told to file on my insurance. I took a picture of truck with license plate but yet they feel no liability or responsibility for their vehicles. It is un…
13314 Boudreaux Estates DrTomball, TX 77377
HOUSTONHouston Dallas Austin14755 IH-45 Bldg #10 17817 Davenport Rd., Suite 315 12217 Waters Park Rd.Spring, Texas 77388 Dallas, Texas 75252 Austin, Texas 78759281-350-6096 972-818-7225 512-835-6475281-350-8295 Fax 972-818-7219 Fax 512-835-6481 Fax800-876-5668September 13, 2012RE: AV Acoustical …
7941 Katy FwyHouston, TX 77024
From Business: Please give us a call today and let us know how we can help with all of your roofing needs. Most roofs are completed in three days or less
Serving the Sugar Land Area
From Business: Our commercial division specializes in City compliance code resolutions. From start to finish. High piled storage compliance's, including State licensed Architectural Plan submissions, Permits, Inspections and all Construction involved. Let us WOW you with our expertise in kitchen and bathroom design, remodeling and renova…
Whether your home needs a complete renovation, or a room needs to be repaired, there are some things to know before you hire.
My house was flooded by Hurricane Harvey. My neighbor whose house was also flooded signed a contract with HL&M Renovations and referred it to me. However after a week the neighbor told me that she fired HL&M Renovations because they did not know how to repair the house at all and advised me to stop using them. Their project manager also told me that he got rid of HL&M Renovations. Following is the main story what actually happened to me:1)When paying the deposit of $3,500, as advised by FEMA, to protest you from liability in case someone from the contractor gets injured in your property, I asked the owner of HL&M Renovations to show me their license and contractor’s insurance. The owner said that they have insurance but refused to show it. This made me very unhappy to pay the deposit.2)The first job of the contract is to clean. When the cleaning work was still not completed yet and their workers were still working on cleaning, the HL&M owner forced me to pay the second payment of $5,500 in cash. This made me very unhappy but I still paid them in full. Until now, all the caulking is still on the floor and cleaning work was the only thing that they did, but they already collected me $9,000. After that they no longer showed up.3)After trying to communicate with the HL&M owner a few times but they still did not come to work, I had to visit the business address under the name of HL&M Renovations, but only to found out that this is a residential house and an old man lives there, who told me that the owners of HL&M have never lived there and this is not an office. 4)I already received a call from the owner of HL&M Renovations that they would not do anything for me anymore and just the two-day cleaning was worth $9,000! I realized that I should have listened to our neighbor’s advice earlier.
Keeps trying to sneak in tax-funded low-income housing into areas it clearly does not fit. If you insist upon building low-income apartments in an area of single-family homes, at least do it on your own dime.
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.