Though it is tempting to write that a contractor who agrees to a written contract in the first place is honest, this isn’t always the case. The only thing that can be said about a contractor who refuses a contract is that the prospective client should drop them and move on to one that does make one. However, there are ways that a client can tell that a contractor is honest — or not — from the contract they help to draw up.
They Are Specific
A client should be wary of a contractor who refuses to commit to specific language. Vague language should always be a warning sign in any contract. It gives the contractor too much leeway to pull a bait and switch. All materials used in the job should have the size, color, make, model and the name of the brand in writing.
The Contractor is Bonded and Licensed
A contractor who is not bonded and licensed is also a non-starter. The papers that prove that the contractor is insured, bonded and has worker’s compensation need to be appended to the contract. Make sure you know enough about the regulatory bodies in place so you can tell at a glance if they’re trustworthy.
They Do Not Rush the Client
A contractor who insists on starting the job right away because there is something so drastically wrong with the plumbing/electricity/HVAC system or even the whole house that the job can’t wait is to be avoided. Though most contractors can only estimate how long a job is going to take, the start date and the targeted end date should be written into the contract. They should also be willing to communicate foreseeable difficulties, and be able to explain where their estimation came from.
They Estimate the Final Cost of the Job
Some contractors claim to give prospective client discounts on the job but never reveal what the final cost will be. This is a contractor who should be avoided. There should be very clear outlines in the contract about any costs, and possible discounts, that will be applied.
The Contractor Gives the Client Their Address and Contact Information
The contractor’s address should be a regular street address and not a post office box. They should have a website and a phone number where they can be contacted in case of questions or emergencies. If they do not, the client can suspect that the contractor is working out of their van. That’s not acceptable.
Generally, the Contractor Doesn’t Want All the Money Up Front
Contractors who get all the money up front then don’t finish or even start the job are the villains of countless horror stories. The client should never pay upfront unless the contractor is very well established and offers a 100 percent guarantee.
A clear and detailed contract drawn up between the contractor and a client can save both money and heartache. A big project is stressful enough without the client having to worry about a contractor’s integrity. Now that you know what to look for, you can see why we comfortably call ourselves the best in in the business. Contact us today for all of your roofing needs.