How Important is it for Investors to Use Quality Contractors in Rehab Projects?
As a successful property investor, you’re often caught wearing a lot of different hats. You may think selecting a contractor for your latest home renovation or rehab project will help you pass over one hat to someone else. A very important job comes just before that though – selecting a quality contractor. It’s much more important than you may think.
For property investors, there is a delicate balance of time and monetary investments that will mean a successful or disastrous investment project. If you’re left way over budget after a home rehab project you may have trouble recouping your expenditures. If your project is held up for months on end, you may lose your opportunity to turn a property quickly and therefore have less profits. Your contractor will have a lot to do with these wins or losses.
Know What You Want or Need
Any successful investor knows exactly where they can cut costs and what projects will make the most impact on their bottom line. Have your rehab project outlined and budgeted out prior to speaking with any contractors. A homeowner and an investor may have very different goals, and a contractor won’t necessarily know that when making their own suggestions.
Hire Someone with Good Subcontractor Relationships
How long has your contractor been working with their subcontractors? Do they have good relationships with electricians, plumbers or wood workers? What is the reputation of the subcontractors your contractor works with?
It’s important to ask these questions. While your contractor would oversee all the activities around a rehab project at your property, the subcontractors will be doing a lot of the work. If you don’t have a reputable contractor working for you, the same may go for their subcontractors.
Plan Ahead – Busy Contractors are Usually Quality Contractors
Most of the best contractors typically have consistent work. If you’re looking for a quality contractor you should start planning your rehab project before you’re even ready to start construction. Interview contractors early so by the time you’re ready to start your project they will be available to commit to your rehab.
Check Them Out
Any time you might have before your contractor can start work is the time to really do your homework on your new contractor. Even if you must change contractors after you’ve already decided on one, it’s much better to find that out now than after they’ve botched the job.
There are plenty of resources online for checking up on your contractor. You can start with requesting to see their licenses as required by your state. Check any disciplinary boards, complaints by the Better Business Bureau, and any records of litigation against your contractor in local court records.
It’s not uncommon for potential clients to ask quality contractors for references. Ask your contractor if you can you speak with a current or past client. A quality contractor will be happy to provider references.
Lastly, you can read online reviews on sites like Angie’s List, Google or Yelp. This will help you understand if the contractor has any disgruntled clients that they certainly wouldn’t pass to you as a reference.
For you as an investor, hiring a quality contractor can be the difference between a good or very bad property investment. You’re putting a lot of faith in a contractor to get the home rehab job done, and well. You’re also banking on their ability to do it in a timely manner. After all, time is money for a property investor.