1. They Don’t Have Good Reviews
Always check their online reviews first. If they don’t have good reviews and customer feedback, then they might not be the right contractor to work with.
2. They Over Commit to Work
Redoing a bad job is more expensive than doing a good job the first time. Often you hire a contractor and believe he and his A-team with be completing the job. This means they will be late, maybe sloppy, getting done quickly, or send a substitute they just happened to pick up. You suspect you have a problem when the subs that show up don’t reflect the quality of the contractor you hired. If the crew that shows up isn’t properly outfitted or seems to be struggling with the job in one way or another, then it’s time to call a halt and get a sit-down with the contractor to get back on track.
3. They Lack the Necessary Experience
Experience is one of the most important qualities to look for in a contractor. It’s important to work with someone who has sufficient and relevant experience for the kind of job that you require. Often, if the contractor is new and doesn’t have enough experience, he might also lack the necessary skills to do the job well.
4. They Start Work, Disappear, Then Start Again
This contractor only does very minimal work, just enough to get the job, then he takes off and disappears. You contact him to come back, finally he does, does a little bit more, and then disappears again. He will even make up excuses and say you need to go to the store and obtain a particular part, and then goes and works on another job. You call and say you are back, but he’s gone again.
5. Their Rates Are Significantly Lower Than Others
Sometimes contractors are one-person businesses, and that does reduce costs. If they don’t spend money to market their company, that can save as well. Even taking those things into account, however, a significantly lower rate means something’s most likely not right. They probably don’t carry insurance, don’t spend money to travel to training events, don’t keep up with the latest technology and processes, certainly don’t carry worker’s comp, and so on. As soon as they mess up your property, they skip town. You are better off paying more for quality professional services than hiring the part-time low-baller who is going to charge you a significantly lower rate but do a crummy job or destroy your property in the process.
6. They Don’t Get the Right Permits
One major red flag is when a contractor does not pull a permit with the local municipality for a major, specific project. For example, for major plumbing, electrical, or structural changes, most cities require a permit. This ensures that common building codes are followed and ultimately approved by an inspector from that particular city.
7. Can’t Provide Current References & Project Samples
First Contractors should have current or newer references for both clients and trades that they work with. They should also show examples of projects that they’ve worked on. Without those prerequisites, major red flags could come up. Make sure to review their work and follow through with references.