Even if you love and trust the person you’ve hired to work on your home, having a contract in place before the work begins is important. Why?
1. It Defines the Scope
You’re hiring your home improvement contractor to complete a specific project. Having a contract allows you to spell out all of the details of the job and how you expect the job to turn out. It prevents your contractor from only doing half the work required to get the job done and then claiming he thought that was all you wanted. It also prevents you from piling a bunch of extra work on to the project and requiring your contractor to finish it before he gets paid (not that you would ever do that).
2. It Defines the Money
Your home renovation project is going to cost some money. Even naïve homeowners understand that repairs and renovations are expensive. The contract prevents the person you hire from raising the cost of the project based on vague reasons or unforeseen expenses. It also keeps you from dragging your heels on payment. Contracts define not just how much you will be charged for the job but when, exactly, your home improvement contractor will be paid (and how much).
3. It Ensures Everything Is On the Up and Up
Home improvement contractors are required to have very specific licenses and bonds. You are required to have specific insurance provisions in place in case someone gets hurt while performing work on your home. A contract can be used to spell out these terms and requirements.
A contract protects everyone. This is true in all fields, not just home renovation. It is the first thing attorneys of every specialty from blue collar to white collar law (like Winston & Strawn Tim Broas) will ask to see if you decide to pursue a lawsuit against your someone.
If you aren’t sure where to start building one of these contracts, don’t worry. There are plenty of resources out there (like Houselogic) that can get you started.
Are you ready to get started on your home improvement? Take a look at eieihome’s directory of general contractors.