The Top 20 Questions You Should Ask Your Remodeling Contractor

What to ask a kitchen remodeler before a contract is signed

Trust But Verify When Hiring a Remodeling Contractor (Before you sign a Contract)

Relationships work best when you can freely communicate. When hiring a remodeling contractor, you're entering a critical relationship. You're relying on them to repair or improve your home quickly, safely and on a budget. The best way to begin any relationship with a contractor is to make sure you ask the right questions. Knowing what to expect before you start is the best way to make the entire process run smoothly.

Here are the top 20 questions to ask your remodeling contractor before you sign any contract!

What To Ask A Remodeling Contractor About Your Contract:

1. How long have you been in the home building and remodeling business?

2. Who is on your staff? - Are they a full-service company, or do they sub-contract elements of the job?

3. If they use subs, who are your sub-contractors?–  For example plumbers, electricians, tile work, etc.

4. Will I have a project manager on-site or is there a particular contact within the company? - You want a single point person if you have questions that need immediate answers!

5. How do you handle change orders? - The approval process, additional fees, timelines, etc.

6. What is your payment procedure, how often do you invoice? - Deposit, milestone payments, monthly, bi-monthly payments, etc.

7. Will you itemize your estimate? - Ask for an itemized list include demolition, framing and finish work, plumbing, electrical, HVAC, etc. Is your bid an estimate or a fixed cost? Make sure you know before you sign a contract.

8. Can you provide references? Ask for three.

9. Has your company built any projects/homes like this one?

10. Are you fully licensed, bonded and insured?

 11. Why are you interested in our project, what are your qualifications? A project goes much more smoothly if you have a connection with your contractor. Personality and rapport is important!

What To Ask A Remodeling Contractor About Your Project:

12. What is our specific project schedule? - Don't begin a project without a detailed timeline including days and times workers will be on site and what tasks are to be accomplished by a specific date.

13. How will you protect my home and property? - Have this conversation before anything happens! Make sure that your contractor will seal rooms for dust, ask who will move large items and remove books, art etc..

14. What's the best way to communicate if I have concerns?  - Email, phone, text, make sure you have a way to get in touch, immediately if necessary!.

15. Is there something that concerns you about my project? - Ask this early. Hidden surprises can blow up a budget. Ask your contractor if there may be hidden issues and what it might cost to remedy them.

16. How will you let me know if there's a decision to be made? - There are decisions that happen throughout a project. Make sure you have a clear method and timetable for making critical decisions.

17. Can I reach you after hours? - Make sure you can get in touch at any time. Pipes break, stuff happens! Make sure you can reach your contractor if an emergency happens after hours.

18. Will you need me to be available regularly to meet? - Some contractors like to have a weekly meeting to go over progress. For example, when the electrical boxes are set and can lights are placed to check placement before wires are run.

19. What documentation will I receive upon completion?  -  Ask about "end of project" paperwork. You should receive lien releases, marked up plans with as-built like electrical and utilities showing shut offs, copies of permits and inspection reports, list of subs and contact info, etc. Knowing what you'll receive before you start, will make sure you have everything you need at the end of the job! Include all appliance manuals, warranties, and care information!

20. What type of warranty do you provide on your work and how long is it covered? - Most contractors offer warranties on their work, Ask your contractor what they will stand behind, how long they will cover their work, and what happens after the warranty is up!

Any quality remodeling contractor will be more than happy to answer all questions you might have about your project. Pay attention to the specific answers they offer and how they answer your questions. You want to have a good rapport with the person that is working on your home! Being able to communicate with your remodeling team is important. You will run into obstacles along the way, and there will be friction. Having a good working relationship can make your project go smoothly and have everyone part as friends.

If you're considering a home remodeling project and you live in the Tuscaloosa area, contact us. At Toulmin Cabinetry and Design we work with closely with our clients through every step of the process. We're always available to answer your questions and offer advice. Want to know more? Give us a call, today!


About Toulmin Kitchen & Bath Design - We're West Alabama's award-winning, premier kitchen and bath showroom. We're experts who are known for a design-build process that makes the construction process stress-free. Contact us to schedule an appointment for a design consultation.