If you’ve suffered damage from a disaster like a hurricane, you are likely to need a contractor. This service provider will make repairs to fix the damage. This may be an emergency repair, or it can be permanent reconstruction. However, finding the right contractor is key. Here are some things to consider as you hire a contractor.
Responsibility of Contractors
Your contractor will be instrumental in restoring your home. This is what they will do during the claims process:
- Complete restorations and repairs in a timely manner
- Manage others working on your property including contractor employees and sub-contractors
- Do work that meets quality standards
That’s why it is so important to know how to hire a contractor. Picking someone that doesn’t have the right experience can cost you time and money.
Do You Need a Restoration Contractor?
Your home’s restoration will require specific skills and experience. Property damage often requires specific skills that general contractors may not have.
General contractors typically build something from scratch. However, they do not have the skills to mitigate damages. That’s why you should look for qualified restoration contractors. They know how to restore water, fire, wind, and other damages.
Here are some things that make them more appropriate for fixing your home after damage. They have:
- The right equipment for dealing with specific damages
- Experience working on properties needing restoration, especially those with a property damage claim
- Certification by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC)
- The correct licensure for the area, including the licenses needed to deal with dangerous substances like asbestos, mold, and lead paint
Should You Use Preferred Service Providers?
Your insurance company will likely have a list of preferred service providers. However, you do not have to use someone on the list. You have the option to choose your own contractors and experts to repair and restore your home.
One way to determine if you wish to use someone on the list or your own providers is to get estimates. Find out what it will cost to make the repairs from many different contractors to get an idea of the actual cost.
In the end, you need to feel comfortable with those you choose. One tip for how to hire a contractor is to remember to pick someone you trust. This will get you back into your home as soon as possible.
Tips: How to Hire a Contractor
During times of disaster, scams run rampant. You’d be surprised by the number of people pretending to be a restoration contractor, asking for money upfront, and then disappearing. When this happens, you lose money and time. That’s why you should always check the contractor’s credentials. You can do this by:
- Doing a background check
- Calling references
- Checking the Better Business Bureau
- And more
Always vet your contractors before they begin any work, even if they are on your insurance company’s preferred list. Also, never give money to a restoration contractor. They should be working with your insurance company.
Finally, make sure you get a written agreement that states the contractor’s guarantee. This written agreement should state that insurance coverage verification is obtained before the contractor begins repairs.
Tips: Once You’ve Hired a Contractor
Once you’ve hired a contractor, here are two things to keep in mind:
- If a contractor suggests an upgrade, it needs approval from the insurance company. If the upgrade makes the property better than its original condition, you will be responsible for the cost of the upgrade.
- Remember, your contractor cannot be your public adjuster. This is illegal because only licensed public adjusters can work with property claims.
Knowing how to hire a contractor is critical to the repair of your home. Hiring a public adjuster may be just as critical for getting a claim that covers the costs of those repairs. That’s why you should call Aftermath Consulting & Adjusters today. We have the experience needed to get you the settlement you deserve.