Hiring the wrong contractor to handle your exterior remodeling – whether sunroom, screen room, patio addition, pool enclosure, hurricane protection or awnings – can lead to a miserable experience and cost thousands of dollars to fix. That’s why it’s so important to choose a contractor who’s trustworthy, delivers on their promises and does quality work on time.
Almost anyone can call themselves a contractor in South Carolina, so it’s important to do your due diligence before hiring one. Ted Cligrow, president of Carolina Home Exteriors, says the onus is on consumers to investigate contractors before handing over large sums of money for major improvements, Carolina rooms or outdoor living additions. His company, located in Murrells Inlet, SC has served over 10,000 customers in the Carolinas since 1980 and will soon to be celebrating their 40th Anniversary.
Cligrow recommends homeowners ask these 6 questions before hiring a contractor:
1. Are they licensed, insured and bonded?
If a contractor doesn’t have a license, they can’t get a permit for renovations. Working without a permit can expose you to fines. Similarly, you may be responsible for the cost of fixing any damage caused by contractor who lacks proper insurance or bonding. Run away from anyone who can’t produce their license and insurance for you.
2. Do they have a criminal record or civil charges against them?
Online background checks are inexpensive and easy, and will help you avoid unscrupulous actors. The safety and security of your family depends on knowing the answer.
3. Do they have the resources to complete the job?
Fly-by-night contractors come and go every year. That’s why it’s important to determine how long they have been in business. Talk to previous customers and ask to see some of the contractor’s completed work. And beware of anyone who demands full payment upfront.
4. Did you get a written estimate and a contract?
Don’t accept oral promises. Getting the price and time frame in writing means that neither party can forget or misremember some detail about the job. It’s all spelled out in black and white.
5. Have complaints been filed against the contractor to the Better Business Bureau?
A quick visit to the BBB website can determine if other consumers have encountered issues with the contractor. Reputable home improvement companies are members of the BBB and other associations like the Horry Georgetown Home Builders Association, Coastal Carolina Association of Realtors and the local Chambers of Commerce.
6. Is the price significantly lower than other estimates?
This should be a red flag! Quality work done by professionals is never cheap. Choosing a contractor solely on price invites corner-cutting and shoddy work. It could cost you more in the long run, either due to overruns or because you’ll have to call in a second contractor to fix mistakes.
This is just a partial list of considerations. For a complete list, visit CarolinaHomeExteriors.com, or call 843-651-6514 for a free consultation. Carolina Home Exteriors is proud to have been serving Horry, Brunswick and Georgetown Counties since 1980 with over 10,000 satisfied customers.
If you’re in the market for home improvement from a dependable, honest company with a track record of success in the Pawleys, DeBordieu, Georgetown and Litchfield area, consider Carolina Home Exteriors.