How to Choose a Contractor for a Home Renovation

Choosing the right contractor is vital to having a successful, stress-free home renovation. Whether you’re in Burlington, Milton, Mississauga or Oakville, these tips for choosing a contractor will help you with your own home renovation project.

First, we advise you to take your time and do your research. Find out about all the contractor companies available in your area. In this recent blog post, we offer some tips for how to find contractors and learn more about them.

Next, we suggest following these five helpful steps compiled by CBC News:

  1. Don’t give in to sales pressure: There’s nothing wrong with taking your time when choosing a renovation contractor – in fact it’s better to take it slow. Don’t feel pressured by sales pitches – let the company know you’ll contact them when you’ve decided.
  2. Be picky and have lots of options: Research the different contractor companies available in the GTA and request quotes from the ones you’re really interested in. Have at least three options – though it doesn’t hurt to have more.
  3. Make sure the company is insured: This is vital to a stress-free home renovation. Ask if the company is insured and with whom. Then call the insurance carrier and verify their coverage. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
  4. Know your responsibilities as the homeowner: Research what your responsibilities as the homeowner are so you’re prepared for the renovation project. The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation has some good information about this.
  5. Get everything in writing: Make sure you get everything in writing. Have a contract detailing all aspects of the project and make sure you read it thoroughly and understand it before signing. Anything that is said verbally should be confirmed in writing to be safe. Save any email correspondence with your contractor as well, just in case you need the information at a later date.

Our Advice

We’ll also share our own advice for choosing a contractor for your own home renovation in the Halton-Peel Region.

  • Check credentials: Just like the CBC’s tip #3 says, it is important to check out the contractor’s credentials. Make sure the company is insured but also look into their background. What kind of training do they have? What references do they have? What do their previous clients have to say about them? See if you can get a list of the contractor’s previous customers.
  • Factor in creativity: It will benefit you to have a creative contractor – someone who can offer you multiple ideas and unique design suggestions. Find a person you can connect with and talk honestly with about your vision. A good contractor will listen to you and make every effort to create exactly what you want.
  • Value for money: Of course, compare quotes from different companies to get a feel for what you should be paying and what would be too much. However, be wary of deals that seem too good to be true. If you’re given a quote that is several thousand dollars less than quotes from other contractors, this is a red flag. That contractor may be cutting corners somewhere (like using cheaper, low-quality materials) or may give you a cheap quote only to tell you later that the project is going to be more expensive than he/she initially thought.
  • Think beyond price: It’s not just about the cost of the project here. Any renovation takes a significant amount of time, whether it’s a few weeks, a few months or nearly a year. You’re going to be spending a lot of time with your contractor, so be sure to consider your overall experience. Pick someone you can talk to comfortably. You will have a better experience if you feel good about their personality, communication skills, methods and ethics.
  • Experience: It’s important to know what kind of experience the contractor has, not only in the general business but with your specific kind of project. For example, how long has the company been doing basement renovations? Have they ever installed a hot tub before? You’ll also want to look into the subcontractors they work with and how long they’ve been working together.

A home renovation is an exciting event and can really be enjoyable. Don’t be afraid to be choosy and take your time deciding on a contractor – it’s the most important part of the renovation process. We hope these tips help you choose your own contractor.

If you’re interested in working with domilya GROUP, give us a call at 647.300.1242. We service the Halton-Peel region, offering renovation services to Burlington, Milton, Mississauga and Oakville.