5 Mistakes to Avoid When Hiring a Building Contractor

Imagine this – you are ecstatic about your home remodeling project. Unfortunately, your building contractor goofs it up by committing major blunders. After everything, he blames you for giving him the wrong idea. Moreover, he refuses to return even a single penny.

This can be a very frustrating situation. You don’t want this to happen to you.

This is where hiring the right building contractor comes into the picture.

Finding a building contractor that not only provides the highest-quality workmanship, but also completes the project on time can be quite grueling. An unfinished job, unsafe construction or a mismanaged project- there’s plenty that can go wrong if you hire just any building contractor.

Here are the top five mistakes to strictly avoid when hiring a contractor.

1. Hiring without Verifying the References

Simply hiring a contractor on face value can not only be expensive, but also downright dangerous. Their false practices might land you in trouble.

Word of mouth plays a powerful role in every business. For your peace of mind and to obtain a successful outcome, you must ask the contractor for several referrals. Make sure to contact all of them and ask the following questions:

Was the job done on time?
How was the overall experience?
Did the contractor commit any blunders?
Were there cost overruns?
Was it easy to reach him/her?
Did they meet the terms and conditions of the contract?
Would you recommend them to other people?

The contractor’s past work speaks volumes about their. Make sure to also check with the local Chamber of Commerce, code inspections office and Better Business Bureau, to see if there are any complaints lodged against the builder.

By getting all the required information about the contractor beforehand, you will save yourself all kinds of hassles. Satisfactory answers from these references will ensure that there’s no risk in hiring that particular building contractor.

2. Not Getting into the Specifics

You must have answers to the following questions before the commencement of the construction project:

Is the contractor clear with your vision?
How long have they been in business?
Have they ever been charged with any fraudulent practice?
Do they specialize in your project type?
Do they charge a lump sum payment before the project?

Getting an idea of the contractor’s work history is essential for making the right choice. It speaks a lot about the contractor’s reputation. It’s important to get all your questions rightfully answered by your contractor.

3. Not Checking the Credentials and Qualifications

Just like any regulated profession, construction is also a disciplined and a professional craft. Further, there are certain qualifications and benchmarks that’ll help prospective customers decide whether or not a contractor is qualified and professional.

You will increase your chances of choosing the wrong contractor by believing everything mentioned on his advert. Just because they are in the construction business, it doesn’t imply that they definitely is professional and trustworthy.

If you are looking for a highly-rated, professional contractor, then asking about their qualifications and credentials is a must. Additionally, it is also essential to check the contractor’s license and insurance policies. Their qualifications and credentials will demonstrate their credibility and knowledge. These will ensure that your building contractor has all the necessary skills and is familiar with the various processes and building codes.

4. Going Ahead without a Written Proposal

One of the worst mistakes to make when hiring a building contractor is not getting anything down in writing. It would be an awful mistake to believe anything the contractor puts forth verbally. Be prepared for unpleasant surprises if you have gone by the verbal commitments made by the contractor.

Remember, a written contract is legally binding and is the order of the day in the construction business or any other business for that matter. Also, once the work’s done, you’ll have a hard time getting hold of the contractor, should something go wrong with the job. This will only lead to further loss of time, money, energy and your sanity.

You must get a proper written contract that includes the following:

Detailed description of the project
Scope of work
Usage of materials and their respective quantities
Project commencement and completion dates
Payment schedule
Process of handling changes in work orders
Notice for cancellation

Additionally, asking for a guarantee of the work to be done in written is also essential. A professional and credible contractor won’t hesitate in providing a written agreement. On the other hand, if the contractor refuses to do so, you should rethink hiring them. There’s nothing more annoying than a botched up job.

5. Getting Lured by Great Deals

You must bear it in mind that underground building contractors care very little about your or their reputation. Hiring someone disreputable, just because you believe that you’ve bagged yourself a bargain can be the worst mistake.

How, you ask?

If you have received a surprisingly low quote for the intended job, it can mean anything from the following:

Usage of low-quality materials
Shortcuts and cutting corners to finish the job quickly
No qualified staff and laborers
Lack of attention, leading to a shoddy result

Don’t fall for low bids. Chances are that their faulty practices will land you in serious legal or financial problem. Look carefully at what you are getting for the price quoted. Hire a reputed building contractor in Anchorage to get your money’s worth and spare yourself the nightmares.


Choosing the right building contractor can be quite difficult. But, by avoiding the mistakes mentioned above, you can ensure the successful completion of your construction project. Additionally, you will also save yourself from falling victim to unscrupulous contractors, who are likely to rip you off. Think wisely, invest quality time and consider each aspect when choosing an expert building contractor.

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