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"As a contractor with 16 years of experience and speaking on behalf of professional contractors. I want people to be aware of the warning signs that they may be dealing with the wrong contractor."
Not every contractor is out to get you. The majority are honest, reputable business owners who strive to do quality work, using good materials at a reasonable cost. In fact, many of these contractors are members of associations such as the NAHB (National Association of Home Builders) or the BBB (Better Business Bureau).
For the past three years, I have conducted investigations in contractor/homeowner relations. I have heard numerous stories of why homeowners feel taken by home improvement service providers. Even though we have our own formulas on choosing a contractor the nightmare stories continue to stockpile. On the other hand, I have heard from several contractors of how they feel undercut by the competition and taken advantage of by the homeowner. Yet still, the bickering goes on.
While Mr. And Mrs. Jones wondered when there newly hired contractor would return, they would be able to use their kitchen for nothing other than a sloppy storage room. The Jones's thought that the contractor they hired to completely remodel their kitchen was superior because he was highly recommended by a friend. They didn't know that his license had expired along with his insurance and that he had a criminal history. They assumed that he was reputable and failed to check his credentials. So as the Jones's wait, the contractor holds their money and left them with a completely destroyed kitchen.
How many times have we made a mistake like this and looked for someone else to blame?
After three years of research, it has been proven to me that the famous terms "contractor" and "nightmare" don't always go hand in hand. Just as we use protection to keep our homes safe, we can use certain tools and resources for successfully screening contractors as we welcome them into our home. Typically, we teach our children to not open the door for strangers, as the same rule should take affect in interviewing a contractor.
During my research, I myself was licensed and bonded as a general contractor. I was also involved with an online contractor referral service. This online service was located in Colorado and promised homeowners in Washington State they would deliver; prescreened, pre-qualified and licensed service trades people at their request. As a contractor I was sent up to 20 job leads a day via email, for jobs I had no experience in. I accepted several of these leads and sold services, by contract, to the majority of these homeowners. At first I was quite successful until my company started to grow. Before I knew it I had an office in Mill Creek, an office staff and 12-15 employees. I was considering the development and expansion of new divisions within my company however, my mistakes were soon to be revealed. I received a phone call from a client complaining of the help that I had placed on the job and our progress. My client proceeded to tell me that my employees were taking 2 hour lunches and taking several 5-10 minute breaks a day. Later another client phoned in with the same concern. Both of these projects were finished late, as I started to focus on weeding out the spoiled help. During this process I had lost control of the remaining projects. As I was firing and disciplining the remaining staff, I was receiving at minimum of three calls a day from angry customers. I felt there was no way out. I finished the last of the projects myself and with the help of my last employee.
While my license had already expired and I was no longer insured however, I was still receiving 20 job leads a day from this same contractor referral. This contractor referral service that promised to screen contractors and deliver them to an already "in fear" public, would refer my company and others I knew who were of the same caliber, licensed or not, insured or not.
P. McDonnell http://www.gooshimo.com
Warm & Toasty Outdoors with Patio Heaters
The Heat is On with Patio Heaters Any outdoor lover will tell you that the right patio heater will allow you to extend your love of the open-air life all year round. A 15-20 foot circle of heat can easily increase the outside temperature by 10-25 degrees Fahrenheit and that makes all the difference between having to stay inside and eating out.
Planning Permission Tips UK - Pre-application Enquiries to the Council - Is the Delay Worthwhile?
The holiday season is now in full swing & for about the next 6 weeks we tend to see a noticeable downturn in the level of new enquiries which I think is pretty much typical amongst most services. This, for us, is a time when we normally attend to the updating & improvement of our internal administration, so the forecasted lull over the coming weeks will be put to good use.
Clear Wax Candles vs. Gel Candles
In the last five years a new type of clear candle has emerged - freestanding resin-based (aka clear wax) candles. Using a base of mineral oil, the candle uses a patented resin as the stabilizer, creating a candle that outshines both traditional paraffin and gel candles.
How to Deal With Contractors (So You Wont Go Mad!)
BE PREPARED -- Building a house is lots of fun, but it's a huge time investment, too. There's a ton of paperwork and planning, so it's essential to establish a system to stay organized.
Aluminium Window Frames
When double glazing first became a popular window choice in the 1960s, most frames were made of aluminum. Aluminum remained the most popular choice for framing double glazing windows through the mid-1980s, when it held over 60% of the market.
Laminate Flooring Advantages
DurabilityBecause it's designed with a tough and durable wear layer, laminate flooring is much stronger than most installed solid hardwood flooring, carpets and vinyls, it's more resistant to scratches than softer surfaces (solid hardwood floors for eg.) and is one of the best choices for households with heavy foot traffic, kids, or pets.
Prepare for Winter Before It Arrives
Even though we are still enjoying warm weather and winter seems far away, now is a great time to begin preparing. If you do a bit at a time before winter hits the tasks are not at all overwhelming.
Make Your Hardwood Floors Shine
You have just installed hardwood flooring in your home. Now what? How do you keep your hardwood floors clean and shiny? Read the following Q&A in which two hardwood floor owners are asking just that.
If You Think Mold and Mildew Hibernate During The Winter, Think Again!
If You Think Mold and Mildew Hibernate During The Winter, Think Again.Free Tips For Removing Winter Mold & Mildew Stains From the Makers of InstaGone"The development of mold and mildew stains can actually be intensified during the winter," says InstaGone Consumer Products president Peter Chicarielli.
Solar Energy Advantages Disadvantages
Many of us know that solar energy is a good thing, but few really understand why. Therefore, I compiled a comprehensive list of solar energy advantages and disadvantages that will enable you to make an educated decision whether on not Solar Power is right for YOU.
FAQs About Using Stone In Your Home
Cordless Impact Wrench - Not the Same Tool as Your Cordless Drill
The cordless impact wrench is quickly gaining in popularity among professional mechanics and the hobby mechanic as well. You may be thinking "I already have a cordless drill that I use for impact applications, why do I need a cordless impact wrench as well?".
Lighting up Your Life
You are visiting a friend that has just had a beautiful kitchen remodel done. It is a lovely kitchen with stunning granite countertops and a sharp looking tile backsplash.
The Benefits of Closet Dehumidifiers
If your clothes are getting moist and musty, and stretched out or otherwise deformed as a result, the closet or cabinet they're hanging in is too humid.Most closet dehumidifiers are wireless and use salt, silica gel, or other material to absorb moisture out of the air.
Waterproofing Basement Walls
Although representatives from waterproofing companies may guarantee results from their product or service, it is wise to keep in mind that there is no magic solution to waterproofing basement walls. In order to save costs on unneeded repairs, it is the responsibility of the homeowner to find the cause of the leak.
Strongly Scented Candles: Use your mouth, nose and eyes to tell
Triple scented, heavily scented, strongly scented - these are all phrases candle manufacturers are using to tout their claim that their candles have more "smell" for your buck. In reality, these claims only act to confuse most consumers.
Portable Air Conditioners Ensure Economy And Convenience
Small is beautiful and convenient and so is the portable air conditioner as it can be shifted from one place to the other very easily. Read on to find out all the other advantages.
Pool Supplies Should Also Contain Safety
A swimming pool with attached spa has just been installed in your backyard. Now you are ready to invite your friends for a big splashy pool party - or are you? Do you have all of the pool supplies you need to maintain your new fiberglass pool? Do you have the chemicals, pool toys, covers, automatic cleaners, pool heater, ladders, liners, slides, diving boards and on and on? You can see pool supplies can add up quickly.
How to Remodel A Small Bathroom
Not all bathrooms can be lavish spaces with whirlpool tubs and two separate vanities. For some bathrooms, space is at a premium and knocking out walls is not an option, but remodeling must be done.
Realign Your Budget - Purchase Your First Piece of Fine Art
If you don't have at least one piece of fine art in your home, then you just have no idea what you are missing out on. Whether an original or reproduction piece, fine art adds warmth, beauty and interest to every room.
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