A few weeks ago, my husband decided he wanted to get some bids on repairing the roof of our detached garage which has been leaking for years, courtesy of our Contractor From Hell experience 10 years ago. He (husband) is a Construction Estimator and frankly wanted to see just what kinds of numbers he’d be getting on the bids. He knows exactly what materials will be used and it’s basically a hot-mop job on a flat roof. This article is about what a contractor should never do – or say!
I happened to come home when the guy was just arriving and after introductions, the contractor began checking out the finish on the walls as well as the kitchen which we remodeled about 4 years ago. He started opening up cabinets to check out the hardware, knocking on the wood and pretty much helped himself to “investigate” the work. Didn’t ask permission to assault the kitchen and then began telling us that he is a professional (several times) and that he is very, very picky about his work. I mean, the guy talked all about himself and his workers and spent little time getting a feel for what my husband was interested in doing.
My husband and I looked at each other, we both smirked as he continued extolling on his greatness and as I sat back listening to his dribbling, I said to myself “this guy will NEVER step foot on my property” much less do any work for us. I left the room to take care of some other things and 10 minutes later he was still there. Not knowing where they were in their discussions I simply reminded my husband that we had an appointment and needed to leave in 10 minutes. Then I heard him say, “but if you sign today, I’ll knock off $700 off the job.”
Now I’m annoyed. And ready to show him the door.
Of course my husband says no thanks, we’re just starting to get some bids, to which he pressures him on when will he hear back from us! He then goes further to name a date that he can expect a call from us and it was all I could do to say you will NEVER hear back from us! Period!
My husband laughed right then and said probably not but email me a detailed quote, which we never did receive, though he “promised” to get it out the next day. But what’s really laughable is when he went on and on about how you have to be careful choosing contractors, because he has seen so much bad work and people getting screwed all the time. Contractors taking money and never coming back or doing a little bit of work and then disappearing for a week or so and then wanting more money…. Hmmmmmm…..I said nothing – just smiled.
Well, we got a laugh out of that encounter and it just brought to the forefront that this guy (and contractors like him) is out there getting work and God only knows the problems he’s created or worse, the nightmare he’s “starred” in with some unsuspecting homeowner. Proves my point though, that homeowners must get educated on the business of hiring, working with contractors and negotiating a written agreement that serves and protects them and not just the contractor.
Please, if you’re looking to do some renovations or repairs and need to hire a contractor, then you must check out my Home Remodeling Bootcamp and save yourself time, money and grief and learn to find a contractor you can trust and have peace of mind with your remodel.