Sponsor spotlight: Tips for hiring a professional remodeler

If you have collected photos of your dream kitchen, drafted a general budget and talked with friends about how you wish your home was more comfortable or modern, you may be ready to hire a professional remodeler to get the job done right. Each May, the housing industry celebrates Home Remodeling Month, and we have collected some helpful tips to guide you in finding the best remodeler for your project.

“Do your homework when hiring a professional remodeler,” recommend Joseph and Melissa Irons, both Past Chairs of the Remodelers Council at the Master Builders Association of King & Snohomish Counites [MBAKS]. “A professional has training, experience and references from satisfied clients to demonstrate their remodeling expertise.”

Check out these steps for hiring a professional remodeler:

1. Collect names of remodeling companies.

Search the National Association of Home Builders’ Directory of Professional Remodelers. You’ll get a list of nearby remodelers to contact. Asking friends and neighbors for names of qualified remodelers will also help you find a match for your project.

2. Discuss your project with a couple of remodelers.

Meet with a few remodelers to discuss your project. Ask your family, friends, co-workers, and neighbors for their recommendations of qualified remodelers to help you find a match for your project needs. We also suggest visiting local home shows and expos, or attending a local city event where you can speak with potential contractors. There’s an upcoming Homeowner Workshop,  6-8 p.m. May 26, at the City of Shoreline. Meet with professional contractors, designers, architects and vendors, including Irons Brothers Construction. If you have a home in Shoreline, make an appointment with the city building department staff to discuss your home remodel specifics. Learn more here.

3. Be upfront with your remodeler.

Describe what you envision for the home remodel, the styles you like, your planned budget and other ideas for the remodeling work. Ask about their expertise in your project type and have them provide background information on their experience. Visit their office and/or website to review their work portfolio and review their client recommendations and company or project accomplishments.

4. Ask about the remodeler’s general liability insurance.

Ask important questions about the remodeler’s business to ensure you hire the best professional:

– Does the remodeler have a contractor registration? This is required in the state of Washington.

– Do they carry general liability insurance and workers compensation coverage in the event of an accident on the job? Also required in Washington.

– Do they provide a warranty for their work? Not required in Washington.

– How do they handle problems that may arise on the project?

Having these answers in advance will you rule out contractors and set the expectations for your experience with the remodeler.

You can look up a contractor’s registration online in Washington here.

5. Check references and background of the remodeler.

After you start speaking with remodelers and find one or two who match your project’s needs, be sure to conduct some background research by checking their references, asking about their training and certifications, find out if they are a member of their local building association (such as MBAKS Remodelers Council). Remodelers with these qualifications tend to be more professional, well-educated, and are more likely to be up to date with current construction practices, standards, and design trends.

6. Don’t look for the lowest bidder.

Many people may be lured by the lowest price for their remodeling project, thinking that they have found a great deal. But beware of alluring low prices. The low bid may be more costly in the end if the contractor is cutting corners, not considering certain costs, leaves details out or is inexperienced.

At Irons Brothers Construction, the no. 1 frequently asked question we receive is, how much will my remodel cost? Visit our FAQs at www.ironsbc.com/faq where you can read a guide from Remodeling Magazine, 2024 Cost vs. Value Report listing the average project costs for the Seattle area and what you can expect in return for your investment to your real estate.

Many professional remodelers can reflect on their experience in fixing remodels done by unscrupulous contractors done with shoddy work and/or whom failed to complete the job. Often, the lowest price may not ultimately provide the best value for your home remodel.

Make the smartest investment in your home by hiring a professional remodeler. You can find a professional who will stay within reasonable limits of the schedule and budget for your remodel. Solving remodeling challenges and providing high-quality service may not be the least expensive, but your results and experience will be worth the extra cost.

Visit Irons Brothers Construction @ironbc on Instagram and at www.ironsbc.com to learn more about the Irons Way and receive Free Consumer Tips and Education for those planning a design-build home remodel.

— By Melissa & Joseph Irons
Irons Brothers Construction, Inc.

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