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Courses in this Department

How to Buy Appliances

How to Save on Energy Bills

Remodeling Value

Woods and Islands in the Kitchen

All About Feng Shui

Ceiling Fan Facts and Fallacies

How to Select Carpet

Buy the Fireplace of the Future

How to Hire a Contractor

Get Wired with Smart Technology

Divide and Conquer

Secret Storage Spots

Redecorate Your Home on the Computer

You Can Decorate with the Stars

Are Your Cleaning Products Making Your Family Ill?


Pitfalls to Avoid

1. Not taking the time to find the right contractor for you can be a BIG mistake. Don't skimp on this part of the project. You won't regret the extra time if you find the right contractor, but you will regret it severely if you hastily choose the wrong one!

2. Don't buy into the lowest bid. It can be a sign of a scam or a contractor who has some cash flow problems. Often the axiom is true: You get what you pay for.

3. Be sure you thoroughly interview your contractor. Not asking enough questions or looking at the bid closely enough can result in BIG trouble. Be sure to take your time and be tough. Contractors expect to be asked the hard questions�don't let them down.

4. Not checking references and licenses is the biggest pitfall when hiring a contractor (or anyone for that matter). Be sure that everything checks out as promised. You will want to ask references if they would hire the contractor again without hesitation. Find out if licenses and insurance are current and in good standing. Check the contractor out with local and state agencies. Take your time and cover all the bases.

5. Be willing to walk away�especially if you cannot verify information. Trust your instinct on this one. You can always find another contractor. Try to keep this in mind before you house is demolished and you are tied to a nightmare by a bad contract.

6. Asking for help. There are agencies out there that will check a contractor's references for you, including commercial references. These services typically offer services to compare bids and to check contracts before they are signed. They are worth looking in to before finalizing the deal.

Compare, Contrast and Check

These are the keys to having a successful project. Happy hunting.

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