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Consumers Beware: Home Remodelling Disasters

It’s no secret to the general home owner that there are both good and bad contractors working in the industry. This is an overly stated fact. Home remodelling clients find themselves in big trouble with their projects when they do not know any specific background of the contractors either from published media, be it online or offline or getting some feedback with some previous clients whom they have worked with. This is a major ordeal to home owners – The lack of knowledge of the background and the much needed education on their part as well.
According to the Consumer Federation of America, the home improvement industry is ranked to be one of the top enterprises that are flagged for customer dissatisfaction and fraud. Other organizations such as The National Association of Consumer Agency Administrators and the North American Consumer Protection Investigators say that this has been a trend for over a decade.

The responsibility of doing the necessary research and background checks on the potential contractor falls squarely to the homeowner. This is the key in finding the best suited home remodelling contractor for the specific job a customer may have.

As Nashville’s oldest locally owned home builder, Haury and Smith Contractors, we have seen our fair share of these incidents.

To avoid these unpleasant experiences, the following are the top 5 mistakes homeowners make when they begin their search for a contractor:

1. The homeowner checks the license and a few references and makes their choice without having to check other available contractors.

- This formality is necessary but tells consumers nothing about the contractor and their business ethics.

2. Clients quickly trust the contractor and signsa binding contract.

Trust is not given away freely and must be earned.

3. The Homeowner fails to do all the background research.

To avoid all the troubles, a homeowner must have the initiative to find out more about the contractor before signing a contract. Doing this gives the home owner confidence in hiring a contractor.

4. All oral agreements must be honored as a part of the deal.

This is a situation to avoid, have everything written in the contract as part of the project scope and specifications. If it is not written, it will likely not get done.

5. Gives the contractor a large sum of money upfront to start the project.

Some states have down payment limits, others don’t. Putting down a limited amount to start the project and having a tight payment schedule puts the homeowner in control of their money and not at the whims of a contractor. This is a common scenario heard from homeowners that are conned by these underperforming contractors.

To wrap things up, it is highly advised that homeowners should research more on their prospect contractors before hiring one. Getting relevant information will save you many troubles and in the long run it will save you time, money, and energy for your home remodelling projects.

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