Ask the Expert: What to consider when picking a contractor

Answers by Justin Anderson, owner/operator of SHAA Construction of Central Minnesota


What should a person consider when choosing a general contractor?


There are many different parts to any construction project, big or small. When choosing a good contractor you should be able to feel that you are making the best choice for you.


You should feel comfortable about the project you are asking the contractor to bid. You should also feel comfortable with what the contractor is telling you back. If it seems far fetched, it probably is.


I believe your contractor should not only be knowledgeable, but they should also be a teacher. They should be able to teach you about products and codes so you, the customer, understand why things are done a certain way or why a certain product should be used.


Ask for references. Anyone doing great work and running a successful business will have a huge list of people that would be happy to tell you their experience of how their project went from start to finish.


Before construction begins, it is important to be comfortable with the contractor and how the project will be done. Contributed photo

When picking a contractor, price of a project shouldn’t always be the deciding factor. If there is a large gap from the low to the high bid, you may want to check and see what one contractor may have included that is extra or the other might be missing. That way, you can compare what should be as close to apples to apples as you can.


Once you receive an estimate, there should be a conversation with the contractor before any decision is made. Always have them sit down with you and go over every line item so you can understand what it all includes for the excavation all the way to cleaning at the end of a project.


To be sure that you are choosing a contractor that is correct for the project you are wanting to have done, make sure they have done a project similar to yours. This way, you will know they are following the correct codes.


Depending on the size of the company, make sure they will have time in their schedule to complete your project in a timely fashion.


Lastly make sure you and the contractor are in agreement of everything in the final contract. Make sure you understand everything clearly so there is no confusion later in the project. This will ensure a smoother timeline during your project with hopefully no material delays or change orders at a later date.


These are a few key things to think about when choosing a contractor for you next building project.


Find out more

If you would like to know more about SHAA Construction you can call Justin Anderson at 320-808-5125 or learn more at shaaconstruction.com. SHAA Construction has been a builder of residential homes, additions and remodels for 16 years in the Alexandria area.


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