When it comes to what you end up spending on your home repair or home improvement project, it doesn’t even matter what exactly it is that you’re getting done. You can rest assured that your general contractor contract is going to end up costing you a great deal. There are the supplies you have to pay for too. The problem is, that you can never just total up all the costs involved in a home improvement project and then arrive at a close estimate of what your general contractor contract is going to end up costing. There are always hidden contractor fees that can completely upend the best estimates. Here are some of those fees you might encounter so you can guard against them.
Many people, when they phone a contractor and he offers to come in to take a look at their home, imagine that the visit will be free of charge. They imagine that the first inspection before the contractor even accepts the job, is free. You imagine that it’s all part of the contractor’s job. He, however, thinks differently. The initial consultation and the quote, according to him, are chargeable. Make sure that you don’t get caught up in the “service charge” scam. When you call a contractor in, make sure that you ask about the service charge. There are plenty of them around who don’t charge this.
Some of them like to stealthily add little upgrades and other add-ons to your bill that you never knew of or were asked about. Some of them are reasonably honest about this – they bring up all kinds of unnecessary new add-on jobs that the try to sell to you as completely essential. Others will just do it without telling you and quietly add those jobs to the bill. You need to be quite sure to scan the bill you get, compare it with the general contractor contract and look carefully at what they’ve added on without telling you.
And finally, you need to make sure that when the contractor gives you an estimate, you don’t come away feeling that it’s a quote. Whatever price you believe you have committed to paying in the end, you have to get it in writing so that you know it’s the final price.
If there are to be deviations from the agreed-upon price for instance –the contractor should say that he’s found some new things about your job that couldn’t have been found out before, and that cost several hundred dollars extra. Well, your answer to that should be that it was their job to tell you that certain extras could crop up along the way. However, you don’t want to play hardball on this. Some problems really are difficult to predict ahead of time.
Basically, common sense is your best friend in problems like these.
Photo by mindfrieze