Five Things To Look for in a Building Contractor for a Kit Home

10 April 2013

While many people who purchase kit homes choose to build their steel frame homes themselves, hiring a contractor to do the work for you is another option. Many contractors are available to build kit homes in NSW, Queensland, Victoria and elsewhere in Australia, so you'll have many options from which to choose if you decide to opt for a contractor. Choosing the right one is the key to ensuring that you get the very best results from your kit home.

It's important to never settle for the first contractor that you find online or just select someone that a friend or family member has used before. You should plan to compare the services and bids for at least three contractors before finally choosing one to hire.

When you're considering contractors, here are five important points of comparison that you can use to make your decision:

- Reputation - A contractor's reputation tells a lot about the quality of his or her work and level of professionalism. A contractor who's been in business for a while will likely have online reviews that you can access with just a quick search. You can check the contractor's Google page, review pages on Yellow Pages or directory sites and do a general search for the company name to get a feel for the company’s reputation.

- Previous Work - When you meet with contractors for the first time, enquire about their experience with building kit homes. Ask for names, phone numbers and addresses of references, preferably for former clients that had kit homes built. You should also plan to at least drive by the locations of the homes to see their appearances. In some cases, if you call a reference that the contractor has provided, you may even able to arrange a visit to tour the interior of the home.

- Credentials - All contractors that you consider must be properly insured and have a license to operate issued by your state, as choosing someone without the proper credentials could put you at risk. You can also ask the contractor if he or she has any additional certifications or professional memberships, which could indicate a high level of professionalism, skills or experience.

- Cost - Of course, the total cost of the project should be a major determining factor in your decision regarding a contractor, but it should never be your only consideration. Sometimes, a contractor with a lower skill or experience level may offer very low rates to try and build their reputation.

- Time frame - Along with a bid, contractors should provide you with an estimated completion date. If you are under pressure to have your kit home built by a certain date, time frame may be the most important thing to consider, but in other cases, the time frame may be useful to choose between contractors that are otherwise very evenly matched in terms of reputation, experience, credentials and cost.

If you keep these five things in mind with every contractor that you consider, you'll be in a better position to make the right choice and enjoy a simple, easy construction process.

Have a tip for how to check the reputation of contractors or a question you plan to ask candidates? Share it with us in the comments section!

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