Before hiring a contractor for your project, it’s important that you do vast amounts of research, conduct phone interviews and receive estimates. You’ll want to check the reputation of the contractor as well as whether they’re licensed and bonded too. There will be local contractors as well as those who are based from outside of your state. There are many reasons you should always pick someone local to complete your project. Keep these things in mind when choosing a contractor.
If you hire an out-of-state contractor, that person might not be licensed to work in your state. This can lead to serious issues if there’s ever a problem with the work itself. When a contractor isn’t licensed in the state, they aren’t required to get worker’s compensation for their employees in that state. If an employee falls on your property, it could leave you liable for medical bills and lost wages. Licensing has the advantage of helping a homeowner weed out bad contractors. A bad contractor won’t be licensed because they are performing substandard work with little experience. That’s not a contractor you want working on your home.
Less Travel Time
When hiring a contractor, you want one who has a base locally because he won’t have to spend hours getting to your job. An hour or two of travel time at the beginning of the day means your job is delayed by an hour or two each day, which tacks on extra days of construction time. It’s likely that the workers will be from that area as well. They’ll leave early to get home to their families at a decent time. That means they’ll spend less than 6 hours working on your project each day.
Contractors who are local to your area will have accounts with local vendors. When a contractor is based in another area, there are two problems. First, the contractor might ask for an upfront payment to buy equipment or materials for the job. It’s a red flag for a scam too. Many scammers ask for upfront payments and never return to the job. Second, the contractor will have to head to a vendor where he has an account whenever he needs materials. It can make the job much longer than it needs to be.
Recommendations from Locals
A local contractor will have a reputation with the community. It’s likely that you’re aware of some bad contractors in your area, and this could be true of the contractor from another area. Unfortunately, you won’t know their local reputation since they are not from your area. They might have to travel to get work from unsuspecting homeowners who aren’t aware of their reputation. You always want to ask for recommendations from friends and locals about who to hire. Stay away from contractors who aren’t local.
When a building inspector knows your contractor, you’re more likely to get an inspector willing to check your job before others. This is especially true if the contractor has a good reputation with the inspectors. Out-of-state contractors won’t have that kind of relationship, and the inspector won’t be willing to fit them into a busy schedule.
Hiring a contractor for your project can be confusing enough without adding in a contractor who isn’t based locally. If you were to consider hiring a contractor who isn’t local, you’d need to do extra research to ensure they are licensed in your state as well as finding prior customers in their area. This will help you learn whether the contractor is trustworthy and does good work. You don’t want to fall for a scam. It’s a hassle you don’t need when you want to get a project done properly.