Hiring a contractor or a little prep work goes a long way

Hiring a contractor or a little prep work goes a long way

Hiring a contractor or a little prep work goes a long way

  1. Get a detailed description what the construction project will entail. This and construction drawings will be a basis for potential contractors’ estimates.
  2. Ask around for recommendations from people whose opinion you trust. Talk to friends, neighbours, homebuilder associations. Ask for references.
  3. If you do not have any recommended candidates, look for potential contractors online. Although some information you find may be misleading, there is usually a grain of truth to be found if the information comes from reliable websites. Check with Better Business Bureau.
  4. Get quotes from chosen candidates. Study them carefully to make sure they cover the same scope of work.
  5. Make sure the contractor you picked is an official registered firm with necessary liability and property insurance and workers’ compensation for employees and subcontractors.
  6. Sign a written contract. The contract should contain:
  • Contractor’s full name, address, HST number and contact numbers.
  • Complete address of the property where the work will be performed and start and completion dates.
  • As detailed as possible description of work to be performed and materials to be used with reference to construction drawings.
  • Pricing and payment schedule (including contingencies, deficiency holdback etc.).
  • Clause confirming work will conform to applicable codes (building, safety, fire).
  • Clause clearly stating contractor will ensure all necessary permits are obtained and legal requirements are satisfied. As owner, you are eventually responsible for the compliance with zoning and other bylaws.
  • Clause re right to retain a lien holdback if the contract is for more than $100,000 (total value of work and materials). Lien holdback ensures there is money to pay builders lien claims. It also limits owner’s liability for lien claims.
  • Clause stating that construction site will be kept in good order and all debris will be promptly removed when the work is finished.
  • Clause re minimum one year warranty on all the work and materials supplied by the contractor.

For advice and more information call us at 905.812.7674.