When hiring a contractor, it’s important to remember these four tips for communication.
- Frequency: Remember to be clear about how often you like to communicate. If you’re the type of person who likes to have a lot of communication, be sure to let your contractor know that. Or, if you prefer to keep conversations to a minimum, it’s important to discuss that, too. Contractors are often busy with several different customers, so there’s no guarantee that they’ll be able to meet your request for a high frequency of communication, but they should be willing to keep you informed of any major updates.
- Method: Chat with your contractor about your preferred method of communication. Some people prefer to correspond via email in the evenings. Others prefer phone calls or texts. Talk to your contractor about the best way to get in touch with you and ask if they’ll be able to communicate with you that way. As a reminder, it is important to have critical information in writing, so we recommend communicating via email or text if you’re discussing pricing, deadlines, or changes in the scope of work.
- Clarity: Try to avoid vague language. If a contractor asks you how you like something, be clear and specific about what you do or don’t like. Saying something like, “It’s okay,” is very vague and doesn’t help the contractor understand what they need to change. It’s also important to be clear about your expectations for the project outcome and its timelines. Don’t say things like, “I’m flexible on the timeline,” if you have a specific date or time in mind for when you need the project completed.
- Questions: Be sure to ask the important questions upfront. Depending on the project, you may want to know…
- Who will be onsite/in my home?
- What is the chain of command, and who should I contact with issues, questions, etc.?
- Can I expect your team to clean up when the project is completed?
- Is there a warranty for the work you will perform or the products being installed?
Having a clear answer to these important questions can help alleviate stress and unexpected surprises.