How can you choose wisely when hiring a contractor?

When Tennessee residents decide to build a home, it can be an exciting time. Pair the timing with the right loan, the right materials and a good contractor, and the process can be simple. Because the general contractor’s job is to manage the subcontractors, they will be in contact with almost every person that works on the home. According to, choosing a general contractor is the most important decision you make when building a home.

The general contractor has a very specific list of responsibilities even as they are required to deal with the unexpected details and problems that arise. A contractor is responsible for the following, at a minimum:

  • Bidding and estimating a project
  • Hiring subcontractors and negotiating contracts with them, then paying them when they are done
  • Obtaining necessary scheduling inspections and permits
  • Creating a schedule that includes deliveries, workers and subcontractors
  • Coordinating and supervising the work of all subcontractors and employees
  • Ordering materials and negotiating material prices

The general contractor has a large job that requires organization, initiative and good rapport with those in the industry. It is recommended that home builders first check references of a contractor before hiring them. The process of building a home can be long and frustrating, and if a contractor has good references it shows they were able to handle the task. When speaking with references, ask about how easy the contractor was to work with, how the quality of the work was and if the costs were within the original estimate.

Building a home is expensive and most people borrow the money from a bank or other lending institution. When so much money is at stake, it is also a good idea to do a background check on the contractor. Make sure they have the appropriate licensing and if any complaints have been filed against them. If there are problems, a good attorney may be able to help you resolve them.

This is for educational purposes and should not be interpreted as legal advice.

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