Dealing with a Contractor Taking Too Long: How to Protect Yourself

If your contractor is taking too long to finish, it may be time to replace it. Don't feel bad about having lowered your foot. However, the first course of action should always be to contact your contractor before taking drastic action. Most problems between contractors and homeowners are due to communication problems and lack of updates.

Too often, contractors get caught up in the details of the project and fail to adequately notify owners of daily progress and setbacks. While it's best to establish communication early on, if you're in a deteriorating relationship with your contractor, re-initiate communication and make sure you have everything in writing. Texts and emails are great for this; even when you have verbal communication, tell the contractor you're going to send an email summarizing the conversation to make sure you're on the same page. This forces both to expose their potential problems, and can be reconsulted if further problems arise. As soon as you start having problems with the contractor, one of the best things you can do is to re-establish what the plan is going to follow and the time frame in which it will occur. Are the workers who built your addition also tearing up the yard? Write down exactly what will be done to rectify it and when it will.

Again, a thunderstorm could postpone this, but a good contractor will be able to avoid it and have a little cushioning to account for those things. Email is an effective method here, as you can print them out and use them to file a case later if that's what it comes down to. You can even create and send an accompanying email to describe the voicemails you've left. For more than 100 years, the Better Business Bureau has worked to connect consumers with companies they can trust. Filing a complaint with the BBB could be enough to persuade the contractor to finish the job or pay him what he is owed. You need to contact them directly and let them know that the delay is not acceptable.

Have them commit to an end date, and when they give you an end date, let them know that you'll look for other solutions if they can't do it by then. Most of the time, even the veiled threat of a lawsuit will set them in motion. Most important of all is to inspect all work carefully before paying contractors for it. As the adage goes, possession is nine-tenths of the law, so if you don't pay them for a bad job, it falls on them to take the matter to arbitration or small claims court to try to get money from you, rather than vice versa. One of the most important skills real estate investors can learn is how to hire and manage contractors, as well as build relationships with them. Unless you're an expert contractor, you'll need to evaluate and manage contractors.

Before collecting quotes, tell each contractor that they have a zero-tolerance policy for projects that exceed budget. Before taking any of these drastic steps, you should consider emailing or sending the contractor a warning letter for delays. There can be many reasons for the contractor's disappearance, some understandable: the contractor got sick or injured on another job, for example. However, if you move the goals to give your contractor room to breathe, modify the original contract to ensure that you still have maximum options in case things go wrong. While it may seem like an exaggeration, the first thing to do when a contractor doesn't finish a job is to try to figure it out and come up with a solution. Regardless of the price or specialization of your contractor, evaluate it meticulously to maximize the chances of hiring a good contractor. Contractors can purchase a bond policy from their insurance agent, effectively insuring against customer disputes. Because researching contractors is so crucial, be sure to read how how to find contractors to change houses before making a hiring decision.

There's no way to completely avoid contractor delays because emergencies arise and construction workers aren't always fully reliable, but there are some things you can do to protect yourself against this problem. If your old contractor led to a payment or refund of the claim, use the money to pay the new supplier. When it comes to avoiding contractor delays and finding a reputable contractor for your project, GreatBuildZ simplifies finding contractors in Los Angeles, Orange County, Ventura & San Diego.GreatBuildZ is a free service that connects homeowners with trusted, carefully selected general contractors, and provides ongoing project support to ensure a stress-free remodel. To keep your license in good condition, contractors often correct the problem instead of risking your license. Be sure to get a copy of a contractor's guarantee bond (if you have one) before signing a contract, as the contractor may stop returning calls once you start discussing the work. If it is not possible for your contractor finish their job on time or within budget then consider that they have abandoned their project and use any remaining balance owed towards completing it yourself.

You may also need sue for any surplus costs incurred due this delay. It's important that you take steps now in order protect yourself from any financial losses due this delay.

Roberta Burgees
Roberta Burgees

Typical tv lover. Professional tv maven. Avid food advocate. Passionate music advocate. Typical beer buff. General musicaholic.