The person you´re about to write that sizeable check for may become a bigger nightmare than you would ever believe.
An unfinished job. Check.
Materials that are breaking already. Ditto.
Sub-contractors at your door because the General Contractor didn´t pay them. Your project just keeps getting more and more interesting, doesn´t it?
And let´s not forget the mechanics lein you now have against your property…
There ARE ways to protect yourself. Certain warning signs stick out like a sore thumb; it makes sense to look out for them. Keep your eyes open, be cautious, and stay aware, and you should avoid any major issues with your project.
Be wary if the contractor:
- Tells you that a written contract isn´t needed.
- Only accepts cash as payment.
- Gives you a verbal estimate on the spot without thoroughly looking at a complex project.
- Has no established business address beyond a P.O. Box. How do you find them if something goes wrong?
- Won´t give you any referrals of previous clients.
- Asks you to get the required building permits. This may mean that they are not licensed or have some type of problem with the licensing office.
- Tries to pressure you into making a decision immediately.