Always make sure you are comparing apples to apples. When meeting with each contractor provide them with the exact same specifications of what you would like to have done.
Check for Licenses, if the contractor doesn’t have a license pass on them, unlicensed people working on your home opens you up to too much risk.
How long has the contractor been in business? The longer, typically the more accurate the bid, this will make cost overruns and change orders less likely to occur.
Check for General Liability Insurance and Workers Compensation Insurance. A good contractor will provide this information. If they cannot provide valid copies, move on to another contractor. The risk and liability for uninsured, unlicensed individuals is too great. For most of us our home is our most valuable asset, it’s simply not worth putting it a risk.
Verify that the bids are thorough and detailed. How many coats of paint? Is the quality of paint what you requested? Does the contractor warranty their workmanship?
Finally, are you comfortable with the contractor in your home and around your family? Is the communication clear and do you both share the same vision for your project?
A good contractor will give you a prompt, detailed quote for the work you need to have done. The value of a licensed contractor is in minimizing cost overruns and availability in the future in case your need to contact them regarding the warranty. Low bids are often unlicensed individuals and they don’t carry the proper types of insurances required by the state of California. Those individuals will most likely not have the same level of expertise as a licensed contractor and will in all probability not be available in the future if something goes wrong. Choosing the right contractor makes your project run smoothly and without headaches!