Home Planning & Renovations

NYC Contractor Hiring Guide

By Tiffany Smolick


The Ultimate Guide to Finding a Good Contractor

February 8, 2012

How can you tell a good contractor from bad contractor? Most of us know people who have had bad experiences with home remodeling contractors. Either the contractors did shoddy and unprofessional work, took months and months to get the job done, or simply appropriated the money and ran without completing the work. Fortunately, you can avoid having this type of unpleasant occurrence happen to you by following these rules for finding and hiring a professional and reputable remodeling contractor.

Signs that you may be dealing with a less than ethical New York City contractor:

  • He won’t offer you a contract. Instead, he will say something like “I never bother with contracts. My clients and I have good working relationships and they know they can’t always count on me”.
  • The contractor will brush off questions about permits, saying that you don’t really need permits because the city doesn’t check on remodeling work and permits are just another method the city uses to get money from residents.
  • Once the contractor begins working on the job, you notice he and his helpers take many breaks and accomplish little after eight hours of work. Supervising their work only brings protests and threats from the contractor, meant to dissuade you from watching them.
  • Shortly into the job, the contractor will claim he made a mistake on the original estimate and request additional funds before he can complete the project. Because he has already started tearing up your kitchen, bathroom or other area, you think you have no choice but to pay the extra money.
  • Exhibits less than methodical workmanship when performing tasks. For example, the contractor may remove your old bathroom sink and vanity and start tearing out a wall before finishing the bathroom project. Moving from one job to another makes him appear busy but does not prove that he is capable of professionally remodeling a room. Anyone can tear out a sink or bathtub!

Legitimate and professional New York City contractors, such as MyHome, exhibit the following traits:

  • Will readily show you proof of licensing, insurance and years in business. The Better Business Bureau suggests hiring contractors who have been in business for at least five years.
  • Will provide you with a clear, easy to read contract containing details regarding materials needed for the job, estimation of project completion and responsibilities of the contractor as well as the home or apartment owner
  • Is aware of the importance of building inspections, permits and other legalities accompanying any type of remodeling performed in New York City
  • Asks only for a small, industry standard, down payment amount rather than excessively large upfront fees
  • Consistently utilizes the best materials available at the most affordable prices.
  • Is prompt and conscientious about working a full eight-hour day.
  • Courteously answers any questions you may have and is not hostile to being observed

A trustworthy New York City contractor like MyHome will communicate all of these characteristics to you and more. In addition to employing expert remodeling designers and technicians presenting excellent interpersonal skills, MyHome will also guide you through the remodeling process with a sincere desire to provide you with a satisfying and stress-free remodeling experience.