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A Well-Written Contract Is Essential

  • Detail what the contractor will and won’t do– such as protection of your household goods surrounding the job site and daily clean-up upon completion of the job.
  • Specify all materials.Your contractor should detail a list of all materials for the project in your contract. This includes size, color, weight, model, brand name, quantity and product.
  • Understand the financial terms.Make sure that the terms are spelled out in the contract. The total price, payment schedule, and cancellation policy (if there is one) should be clear.
  • Warranties should be in writing.Make sure any warranties offered are written into the contract. A warranty must be identified as either “Full” or “Limited.” If it is a “Full Warranty,” all faulty products must be repaired, replaced or your money returned. If it is a “Limited Warranty,” this indicates all replacements and refunds of damaged products are limited in some regard. The name and address of the party who will honor the warranty (contractor, distributor or manufacturer) must be identified. Make sure the time period is clearly specified for which the warranty is offered.
  • Codes and restrictions should be followed.Be sure that your contract with a professional remodeler spells out any code or permit restrictions, as well as any fees involved in the work on your home.
  • Think carefully before you sign a contract.If it is incomplete, don’t sign it. Do you understand everything? Are you getting what you really want? Are you paying a fair price? Do you have a copy? Read the contract again. If it is incomplete, don’t sign it. If an item you want isn’t written in the contract, you probably won’t get it. Know all of the facts before you spend your hard-earned money.

Working with a Professional Contractor

Be sure to put all changes in writing if the scope of complexity of your remodeling project is modified while work is being done. The amendment should be agreed upon by both parties.

Ask your professional contractor to provide a certificate of insurance covering workers’ compensation, property damage and personal liability.