A play in three acts. Questions to ask when the Remodeler comes to your home, when you visit their office or showroom, and when you talk to his past or present clients.
Questions to Ask At Your Home
- Do they have a stellar record of successfully completing projects such as yours on time, to budget, to a high level of quality?
- Do they commit to stay on your job from start until completion?
- Do they maintain long-term relationships with trades people?
- Do they have personable staff with whom you can develop a positive rapport for what may be many weeks or months in your own home?
- Do they take responsibility for communication, scheduling and coordination of all parties?
- Do they take responsibility for feasibility, getting permits, and interfacing with public officials?
Customer Service and Communication
- Do they respond promptly to your inquiries?
- Do they emphasize service before, during, and after the project?
- Do they respond promptly to any call backs after completion? Quickly resolve any issues?
- Do they have a permanent office, routine, and emergency telephone numbers?
- Do they stand behind their work? How long have they been around?
- Do they have a strong warranty? What is covered and what is not?
- How do they handle weekend emergencies? What is their back up system?
- What is the geographical radius of their jobs? (Smaller radius is more efficient = more time on the job, less time driving)
- Do they have design staff that are experienced and talented?
- Do they honestly respond to your design ideas? Not everything is feasible!
- Do they have staff with the knowledge and talent to assist you with selections of materials and products for your project?
- Do they provide comprehensive contract documentation including detailed drawings?
- Do they put all agreements (including change orders) in writing to preclude any misunderstandings?
- Do they have up-to-date licensing, liability, and workman's compensation insurance?
Questions to ask the Remodeler at their Office and Showroom
- How do they organize themselves and their projects?
- Do they have a showroom?
- Are they dealers for certain products which enable them to get discounts that they will pass on to you?
- How broad is their selection of products? Can they match what you have in your home?
- Where do they get their design inspirations?
- Can they show you in 3D how something will look?
- What kinds of 3D drawings do they produce?
- How detailed are their construction drawings?
- What is their project lifecycle?
- When you sign up for "Design", do they block out time for you in the production schedule?
- Do they track milestone dates for jobs and what happens if they fall behind?
- How do they keep that process on track?
- How do they manage your job? Is there a schedule?
- How frequently is it updated?
- What reporting comes back from the field?
- What is the management reporting system?
- Is the completion date that you are promised realistic?
- What does the contractor do so that you are not interrupted with detailed questions on a daily basis that could have been answered up front?
Questions to Ask The Company’s Clients
- Overall, how satisfied are you with the company?
- Would you use them again?
- Had you used other companies previously? How did they compare?
- Did they complete the job on or ahead of promised date?
- Did the quality of the finished project meet or exceed your expectations?
- How was the value added to your home and lifestyle vs. cost of the project?
- What changes would you make if you did the job again?
- How was the team’s enthusiasm level?
- Did they offer creative or better ideas to enhance your project?
- How was the designer’s availability? Listening skills?
- What tools did they use to show you how your project would look?
- Were they effective communicators?
- Were they kept informed of major changes to the estimated project costs as the design evolved?
- Was the scope of work detailed, discussed, and given to the clients in a written document?
- Was there a satisfactory range of products for you to be able to choose from?
- Was the quality of product lines offered satisfactory?
- Did they have a showroom and was going there useful for you?
- Did they provide a construction schedule?
- Did they show up for work every day as promised?
- Was there a Project Supervisor and was he available to you?
- Did he keep you informed and address any of your concerns?
- Were there any surprises and how were they addressed?
- Did they have respect for your family living in the space?
- How did they do at protecting your home and property?
- Were they responsive to questions and requests?
- Did they have this schedule on-line, so that you could see when it was changed?
- Did you know what was going to be happening at your home each day?
- Did they keep the jobsite neat?
- How were the trades people’s competency and personality?
- Was there appropriate and timely problem resolution if an issue arose during production?
- How did they respond to any call backs after completion?
- How quickly and satisfactorily were those issues resolved?
- What kind of after care or warranty work did they provide?