10 tips for choosing a reliable contractor

From press release

CINCINNATI—After you have done your homework and you’re ready to get started on that next big project, it’s time to call the contractor. Remember that asking a contractor the right questions will immediately give you a good sense of whether that person is reputable and reliable, because a reputable contractor will never resent you asking good questions.

Here are a few tips from the experts at Handyman Connection, a nationwide company specializing in worry-free small- to medium-size home improvement, repair and remodeling services, to keep in mind for your next project:

1. Insist that contractors provide written estimates on company letterhead.

2. Ask contractors to provide written guarantees.

3. Find someone else if a contractor insists on cash payment.

4. Are the contractor’s licenses and registrations valid?

5. Did the contractor offer you a legitimate list of references?

6. Did the contractor show proof of third-party property and injury insurance?

7. Are the contractor and any related trades people bonded?

8. Check to see if the contractor is registered with the Better Business Bureau.

9. Evaluate the third-party online listings for positive and negative comments about the contractor. These can be found on sites like www.bbb.com.

10. Look at the contractor’s Web site for pictures of work performed, for feedback from customers, and any links to their other online Web pages.

For more home improvement tips, visit http://www.handymanconnection.com.

From the March 31-April 6, 2010 issue

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