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Hiring a Contractor 
 By Brian Guy, BusinessMatch Directory Matchmaker

Hiring a Contractor with Brian Guy, Business Matchmaker on AjaxPickering.caWhen you need to hire a contractor, what process do you take when ‘shopping’ around?  You hear all too many stories about contractor horror stories; are you taking the right steps to protect yourself? Consumer Protection Ontario lists out the steps we should all follow whenever we need to hire a professional for a home project.

1.  First, ensure to make a list of exactly what you want done.

  • Remember that changing plans in the middle of a project will cost extra money
  • If no plans are changed, did you know that: no matter what, a contractor cannot raise the estimated price by more than 10%

2.  Set a clear budget

  • Prepare a contingency plan separately for unexpected issues that may be uncovered

3.  Even when you have a referral, retrieve written estimates from a minimum of 2-4 local companies. These should include:

  • Total cost of the projectHiring a Contractor with Brian Guy, Business Matchmaker on AjaxPickering.ca
  • All materials that are required
  • Exact work that needs to be done
  • Start and Completion Dates
  • Warranty and guarantees
  • Company insurance coverage

4.  Company Background Check

  • Registration, Licenses, Health & Safety
  • Customer References & Online Reviews from multiple sites
  • Consumer Beware List
  • Better Business Bureau
  • Chambers of Commerce
  • Any other association directories the companies claim to be a part of  
  • You municipality for any information they may have on the contractor

5.  Have an agreement with the contractors about how you will deal with any disagreements or disputes.

  • Ideally, this should be addressed in your contract  

6.  Try to avoid cash deals. If you don’t, make sure you still get a written contract. Otherwise you’re not protected.

  • If anything goes wrong, you can be held accountable for their mistakes
  • The contractor could take your deposit or leave unfinished; difficult/expensive to fight the case
  • If the worker is injured you can be held liable for any loss of wages without contract.
  • Reputable companies meet all legal requirements.
  • If you do pay in cash, make sure that you get a detailed, signed receipt from the contractor.

7.  Check warranties and guarantees carefully

8.  Keep a copy of the agreement for yourself

By following these steps, you should never run into issues. While saving money can be achieved, many times it is not the best value for your money. It’s always cheaper to have it done right the first time than pay to have it done twice.  

Hiring a Contractor with Brian Guy, Business Matchmaker on AjaxPickering.ca

 

 


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