When I’m looking for a construction company, I want value, quality, courtesy, experience and professionalism. I want a company that listens, communicates and takes my ideas seriously. I want a company that knows what the heck they’re doing.
Whether retail construction, adding to a warehouse or in need of ground up construction, going with the wrong contractor is going to be costly and down right frustrating. When looking to hire, there are a few things I’ve learned to keep in mind:
- An ad doesn’t guarantee a builder is worth the time.
- Any builder that says “yes” to every request is more likely looking to get paid than helping you get the best out of the project.
- Reputable commercial construction companies do not pressure you to go with them.
- Busy contractors do not go door to door looking for work. I don’t know about you, but a busy contractor is preferable to one that desperately advertises they need work.
- If they only accept cash, ask for full payment upfront or suggest you borrow from a lender they trust, tell them you’ll get back to them and throw that number away.
- You can get a solid idea of a construction company’s worth by checking with the BBB, local and national construction associations, and online customer reviews.
For commercial construction, there are things you have to know. Before hiring, here are five questions to ask to get an idea of their worth and ability to deliver.
1. Are you licensed, insured and bonded?
Licensed means the company and its employees have the necessary education, training, apprenticeships, etc., to qualify for the work you’re asking of them. Their licenses should be up to date. If they claim it just expired last month, expire the conversation.
An insured contractor has liability insurance. This protects you if anyone is hurt or if there’s damage to your property during the project. Bonded refers to the contractor’s surety coverage, a form of insurance that protects all parties if the project is never completed, if permits aren’t paid for or the contractor fails to meet financial obligations.
2. What guarantees and warranties come with your work?
Retail construction, shopping center construction, ground up construction, it should all come with a firm, written warranty, guaranteeing the work and stipulations of what’s to happen if you don’t get what you expected. Good contractors will give you anywhere between 12 and 24 months to perform reasonable work that falls within the original contract.
3. Do you have client references?
Commercial construction clients past and present are excellent resources for seeing how a company delivers. The company should have a history that corresponds with your needs. A company with a well-heeled history in shopping center construction may not be the right one for your school build.
4. Will I have a project manager?
A familiar face will be important to any ground up construction project. Bringing your concerns and even your compliments to random, rotating strangers will not make for a growing relationship. Also, find out if principle players will take two weeks of vacation in the middle of your project.
5. How many projects does the construction company have and have coming up?
What you really want to know here is how dedicated the company will be to your retail construction project. Managers and team members should be attentive to you and your needs.
Ask these questions and get the answers you need for your next commercial project. Contact us today or call us at 1-888-880-4949 to help you with answering these question and more when it comes to starting your project and getting the information you need in selecting Sierra Group!