What to do before you hire a contractor.

2 Replies

I am finally interviewing several contractors and GCs about starting work on a 3bd 2 ba in Long Beach, CA.  

Some of them are referrals or have good reviews online.

I have some questions that I plan to ask, including if they are insured, licensed, and to see if they do work on investment properties, rather than regular homes.  I also plan to ask if they will break out their remodeling costs so that my CPA can accurately depreciate the work done on the property.

I was wondering if any of the BP community has a checklist that they use when interviewing and hiring a contractor?

I have read J Scott's book on estimating Rehab costs, but being in California, the numbers will probably be way above what he states.

Personally I have done some light electrical, plumbing, and remodeled a bathroom, so I have some construction knowledge.  I need to get this project done so that it can start producing some income and appreciate the help!

A house is a house , it doesnt matter to the contractor if its an investment property or not , they are built the same . 

Havent a clue what breaking out the remodeling cost means as far as your accountant . 

As far as vetting a contractor , check licenses , ask for insurance , workmans comp , check your state judiciary for lawsuits , check the licensing board . 

Dont hire "chuck in a truck " .  A professional contractor isnt cheap , but will pay off in the long run . 

@Matthew Paul  I was referring to the article that @Brandon Hall wrote about BARRRR.  https://www.biggerpockets.com/renewsblog/forget-brrrr-try-barrrr/

Brandon had mentioned that you don't want a contractor to just give you an invoice that simply says something such as "Bathroom, $10,000"  rather that some of the work should be broken out as different work can be depreciated at different rates. 

Many of the contractors in SoCal tend to do high end restoration and are not focused on more economical remodels.  They are focusing on people who will spend 100k on a kitchen and 50k on a bathroom.

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