Qualities People Look For in a General Contractor
Planning to renovate or remodel your home? Or maybe you’re building a new one? If you want the job to be done right, your first step should be to look for a reliable general contractor. Your ideas and visions will come to fruition through your contractor.
A general contractor’s primary responsibility is to oversee or manage the day-to-day activities of a construction project. Whether it is home remodeling, home renovation, or home expansion, a contractor is expected to ensure the easy and efficient execution of the project.
However, choosing a good and reliable general contractor can be challenging. Knowing what qualities to look for will help, it is also crucial to understand what a general contractor’s specific responsibilities are.
General Contractor’s Responsibilities
The following are the day-to-day responsibilities of general contractors.
- General contractors are expected to communicate with clients regularly.
- They make sure that the materials are complete and that they are of good quality.
- They are responsible to take care of the employees (employee management).
- A general contractor answers directly to the client.
- They are also responsible for the management of subcontractors (i.e., water, electrical, and plumbing).
Some general contractors take one project at a time, while others like to juggle multiple projects. In addition, some contractors have a team assigned to work on projects.
The Best Qualities of a General Contractor
Here are some of the best qualities you should look for in a general contractor.
1. Insured and Licensed
Contractors are constantly exposed to accidents and injuries while on the job. Choosing someone who has builders’ insurance will give you the guarantee that you won’t be held liable when something happens to your contractor while onsite. If you choose someone who does not have insurance coverage, you will have to pay for your contractor’s medical bills, legal fees, and other expenses when he gets hurt while working on your property.
Additionally, you’ll want to be sure that you’re getting a professional contractor who knows all the requirements, processes, and codes in your state. In this case, you should look for one who is fully licensed.
2. Experience and Knowledge
An experienced general contractor is always the best option.
Experience is about knowing what to do and how to do it. It’s about understanding the value of quality. It’s also about finding work-around solutions for even the most challenging situations. An experienced general contractor will always give you more than the value of your investment.
Of course, experience and knowledge always work hand-in-hand, so be sure to your prospect for proof of their previous projects. Find a way to connect with their previous customers and ask for testimonials.
Since you’ll already be asking for testimonials, you’ll have initial information about your prospective contractor’s reputation. It’s important to choose one with credibility, especially if you want someone you can easily trust; and someone who can commit to a project.
4. Love for What They Do
You’ll want to work with a contractor who loves what they are doing, someone who has the enthusiasm, energy, and passion for helping you realize your plans and projects. Can you imagine what it would be like to work with someone who keeps complaining about what they are doing? That would be a lot of stress and wasted time.
General contractors who love what they do know how to look at things with fresh and innovative ideas, and this can only mean good things for your home renovation project.
5. Good Listening Skills
A general contractor should be a good listener. You wouldn’t want someone who doesn’t hear what you’re saying, would you? You want someone who knows what a real conversation is, not someone who pretends to listen.
A good listener also knows how to take note of what you want and need – literally or by just listening.
6. Good Communication Skills
As mentioned earlier, a general contractor answers to you, the customer. This requires good communication skills. Being a good listener is a start, but it’s also essential to establish a connection with each other. This will allow you to stay constantly in touch with each other. You can schedule meetings for updates and to discuss other plans.
Good communication skills help in ensuring that your home renovation project is done with passion, efficiency, and accuracy.
If your chosen contractor is flexible, adjusting to different tasks won’t be difficult. So, if you have additional plans or want something changed, it will be easy to do so.
Also, a flexible contractor is someone you can depend on to do everything that you need to do to ensure that your plans are brought to reality.
You will want to work with a contractor who sees the value of your home, and who treats it as their own. A contractor who respects you, your family, and your property is the ideal partner for a project that means a lot to you.
If your contractor likes to cut corners to finish the job, or if they are the type to cut costs even if it’s against your will, then you probably shouldn’t hire them.
Before you choose a general contractor, find time to study the list above. For instance, which qualities do they possess? Will it be easy to work with them? Choose your contractor based on what they can offer you and not because they’re famous or well-liked.
Rachel Porter is the content specialist for Custom Contractors Insurance, LLC, an Arizona roofing and contractors insurance company. When not writing, she enjoys reading and mountain biking with her friends.