At any one time, over 25% of all Los Angeles homeowners are considering doing a residential remodeling project, be it a new kitchen remodel, a bathroom, an addition, or an ADU project. No wonder local LA residential remodeling contractors are so busy these days. Even so, it’s important that you not hire any old contractor you find sifting through your junk mail. Hiring an experienced, licensed contractor will ensure you have a positive remodeling experience and not a ‘renovation nightmare’. This article will help you find the best residential remodeling contractors in Los Angeles.
Here at GreatBuildz, a free service that connects homeowners in Los Angeles, Orange County, Ventura or San Diego with reliable residential contractors, we speak to homeowners every day about planning for a residential renovation – here are some considerations, ideas, and tips to get you started.
What Kind of Projects Do Residential Contractors Do?
A residential contractor coordinates and oversees nearly all aspects of a home remodeling or improvement project. This includes the management of all subcontractors hired for each aspect of the work. They also ensure that your project is completed within the set time and budget.
In a nutshell, a residential contractor oversees every aspect of the job, coordinates all critical components needed for a project, obtains all necessary permits, and ensures compliance with all safety regulations.
Why Is it So Hard to Find Great Remodeling Contractors in Los Angeles?
It is not very hard to find ‘any old’ residential contractor in Los Angeles for your remodeling project. A simple online search can reveal hundreds of options. The hard part is knowing which contractor is the right, honest one to work with. That’s because no two residential contractors are the same. They vary based on their prices, quality of services, communication, and other qualities.
So you need to perform thorough research to identify one who’ll get the job done right the first time. Better yet, you can leverage services like GreatBuildz which connect homeowners in Los Angeles, San Diego, Ventura, and Orange County, with reputable renovation companies. GreatBuildz does a rigorous contractor screening process, so you don’t have to.
What are the Ways to Find a Quality Residential Contractor Near Me?
There are many options to find the best contractor for your project. For example, you can:
Ask for referrals
You can ask your friends, family, colleagues, or even acquaintances for recommendations. The people you know might have worked with a contractor they liked or know someone who has.
Use a professional service
Alternatively, you can use a service, like GreatBuildz or similar, that does thorough contractor screening and introduces you to 3 reputable home contractors.
A web search can reveal many residential contractors near me. However, there are so many options and they all purport to be the ‘best’.
Don’t go with any recommendation on social media unless it’s coming from someone you know, as other people may be biased.
How to Vet Potential Remodeling Contractors in Los Angeles
Once you’ve identified potential residential renovation contractors in Los Angeles, the next step is to vet them. Vetting allows you to compare the residential contractors head to head to pick the right one for the job. Here’s how to vet potential residential contractors:
Check for Licensing
A valid license is the first indication that your remodeling contractor is qualified for the job. It shows that the contractor has the requisite experience and skills, understands the basics of construction, and knows the local laws and codes. Search the CSLB License Database to confirm if your contractor is licensed in California.
Check Online Reviews
Reviews give you a great insight into what the industry experts and previous clients think about the residential contractor. While at it, pay close attention to the negative reviews as they give you a sense of the worst-case scenario.
Confirm They’re Insured and Bonded
An insured contractor reduces the risk to your financial security if your property is damaged or a worker gets injured. Ask your potential residential contractor for a copy of their insurance certificate and have their insurance broker add you as “additional insured”.
Check Their Portfolio
Reviews are great, but pictures are worth a thousand words. So, go ahead and browse through the contractor’s portfolio on their website. If you’re in their office, ask for the most recent photos. Usually, you’ll be able to tell whether you like their work or not based on the pictures.
Call their references. Ask your potential contractor for references (past clients) and contact details. Make a point to reach out to them to find out their experience working with the contractor in question. Some will even be willing to show you the remodeling project, especially if you are in the same area as them.
Interview the Owner or Project Manager
Have an interview with the company owner or Project Manager and ask all the essential questions. A good contractor will be happy to address your concerns and make you feel confident that your remodeling project is in good hands.
How to Compare Contractor Bids
Bid scoping ensures you’re not overcharged for the same results. It also helps you eliminate estimates that are unrealistically low, as these are often red flags about the contractor’s qualifications. Here’s how to compare contractor bids:
- Manage your expectations: You might have hoped to pay $10,000 for your project, but things like the material, scope, and size of your project will influence the cost. So, before soliciting bids, you want to research costs to see if your budget aligns with the project’s scale. Without a good benchmark, it’s hard to tell which bid is a bargain and which is not.
- The power of 3: Once you qualify contractors ahead of time, you’ll need only 3 bidding contractors to make the right choice. The last thing you want is to compare 10 different company bids, so narrow down your options to 3.
- Compare apples to apples: Create a breakdown of labor, materials, unit costs, and other selections, so you aren’t comparing apples to oranges. In the same breath, be sure to provide details on the products and materials to be used. Otherwise, some contractors may bid on top-of-the-line products while others, on the cheapest products possible, making it hard to decide.
- Have clarifying calls: Review your bids and develop a list of clarifying questions for each bidder. Set up a call and review your comments, concerns, and questions, and allow the bidder to respond and explain. If necessary, allow the bidders to resubmit their bids according to the feedback obtained from the calls.
- Pick the winning bid: Throw out any bid that didn’t provide detailed info and only focus on the viable ones. Then analyze and decide on the winning bid. Remember, the goal is to get the job done right the first time – and not have to fix things continually after the remodel.
Things to Consider Before Hiring Remodeling Contractors in Los Angeles
Before signing a contract with a residential contractor in Los Angeles, you’ll want to go through a few steps to ensure you’re a good match. Here are a few things to keep in mind during the process:
- Know what you want: Before speaking with contractors, take time to consider your project goals. Then compile crucial project details to help you get the most accurate quote. For example, instead of asking for a kitchen remodeling quote, come ready with specific project details/list, square footage, amenities, counter types, flooring types, etc.
- Only hire state-licensed contractors: A few clicks on its site can verify the licenses of the contractor you plan to hire is in good standing with a Remodeling Contractors in Los Angeles and that they’re permitted to perform the renovation project.
- Contractor’s work history and habits: Some contractors are generalists while others are specialists. You want to ensure that their ability matches your project. Check their work and determine whether it is similar to your project and use quality workmanship and materials. Also, check customer satisfaction and signs of professionalism, or lack of it.
Hire Remodeling Contractors in Los Angeles
When it comes to planning and coordinating a residential renovation, you shouldn’t have to go it alone – GreatBuildz can help simplify your renovation experience.
GreatBuildz is a free service that connects homeowners in Los Angeles, Orange County, Ventura or San Diego with reliable, thoroughly screened general contractors and provides project support from start to finish.
Call now (818.317.3567) to chat with a real person about your next renovation project or visit our website for more information: www.greatbuildz.com