OK, so you don’t have a qualified contractor in the family and no one you know and trust has someone they would swear by. Where can you go to find a good and trustworthy contractor? (Besides me of course)
If you’ve had either no experience or poor experience with contractors, many consumer protection experts will tell you to start with recommendations from family and friends. These experts are pretty much in agreement that if possible, start via word-of-mouth referrals and as your goal is to be a satisfied customer; your odds of achieving your goal increase based upon others favorable experience. That should work assuming your friend or family member or co-worker is sufficiently knowledgeable enough to make a recommendation but if things go wrong, please bear in mind that it might have a big impact on your relationship with that friend, family member or co-worker. Also, many times, they’re recommending a family member and not necessarily someone who is qualified to do the job you want.
Some people might think to start with the Contractors’ State License Board. While the Board does not recommend or refer consumers to contractors, they are there to help and consumer protection is the first thing of their agenda, right? True enough and when you click on the Consumer selection of the Board’s website, the following question and section will probably get your hopes up:
How do I find the right licensed contractor?
This step highlights some of the different things you can do to help you find the right licensed contractor.
While you won’t be disappointed with the information contained within that section, its’ focus is on helping you check out and hire the right contractor – which is great if you’ve already FOUND a contractor. One portion, titled ‘Ask for personal recommendations’ seems to indicate help, but the focus is again on checking out a contractor that you’ve already found.
So if you’ve run through the family/friends/co-workers/etc networks without much confidence in any referrals received, you’ll probably go one of two routes that the vast majority of consumers follow in finding a contractor. Either you’ll response to a solicitation made to you or you’ll conduct your own search. Regardless of how you find a contractor, remember the next step will be the process of checking them out.