How to Choose a Home Remodeling Contractor
A housepainter


The Tips You Need to Know to Get the Job Done Right

At some point, every AZ homeowner considers finding Arizona home remodeling contractors. From updating the kitchen to adding on an enclosed patio, it means finding a home remodeling contractor capable of making your vision a reality.

Knowing how to choose a home remodeling contractor could help you avoid some costly missteps on your way to a new space. Read on to learn some essential tips to select the best contractor for your home renovation!

Ask Around for Recommendations

Family, friends, and neighbors can provide valuable contacts. Asking people you know for recommendations is more effective than googling for an Arizona home remodeling contractor and hoping for the best.

Don’t feel wrong about double-checking recommendations with reputable review sites and local building inspectors. A Google search for “best home remodeling contractors near me” can yield some quality options. Avoid contractors who have limited or no online or social media presence. Even newer contractors should have a website with basic contact information!

Meet With More Than One

Unless you feel 100% confident in your choice, it’s a good idea to interview a few potential home remodeling contractors. Even if your friend had an excellent experience with a contractor, it might not be the best fit if their style differs from yours or your project is outside the contractor’s comfort zone.

Start with a Phone Call

Armed with a list of prospects, make some calls to ask basic questions and narrow your list to avoid wasting time on poor fits.

  • Has the contractor ever handled a project like yours?
  • Can they provide references from similar projects?
  • How would they handle your project?
  • How many other projects would they work on at the same time?

If you like what you hear, ask if they would be willing to meet for a consultation and provide estimates.

Discuss the Project In Person

Meeting face to face allows you to assess the contractor and show them your space. It’s crucial that you feel comfortable with the contractor because they will spend a lot of time in your home.

Fact Check Everything

As much as we would love to take people at face value, that’s not always the wisest move. Even home remodeling contractors can be charming and personable during an initial meeting, but that doesn’t mean they are clean.

  • Check with the Better Business Bureau for complaints.
  • Contact the state consumer protection agency to see if they have any history of disputes.
  • Verify all licenses and certifications to make sure they are current.
  • Ask around at local home improvement and hardware stores to see if they work with the contractors on your list. They may give you some valuable insight into behavior, reliability, and any history of unpaid bills.

Take your time with this process to avoid walking into a nightmare situation. While many contractors may be as kind, efficient, and productive as they seem, you don’t want to end up with a bad apple. 

Follow Up With References

Once you narrow the list to those with clean histories and current licensing, it’s time to check in with past clients. Note that home remodeling contractors should be able to furnish a few client references.

When you call the references, try some of these questions:

  • Was your project completed on schedule?
  • Did the team clean up and keep the worksite neat?
  • Were you pleased with the outcome?
  • Did the contractor address concerns promptly?

You may want to ask about pricing and how clear the contractor was about payments and costs. If a client’s project went over budget, was it reasonable, or is it a pattern? 

Don’t forget to pay attention to the reference’s tone and attitude. If the experience was good, they will sound upbeat and excited to share their experience.

Compare Portfolios

It’s always nice to see before and after pictures from past jobs. When comparing portfolios, look for project-specific red flags like these:

  • Painting projects with overspray, runs or streaks, or splatter on the floors suggest inexperienced teams or rushed jobs.
  • Tile work that has excess caulking or grout at the edges intends to cut tiles inaccurately. Crooked lines, uneven tiles, awkward transitions between surfaces, and cracking grout are red flags.
  • Drywall work and enclosed rooms should be free of warped panels, uneven floors and ceilings, and gaps along windows and doorways.
  • For bathroom projects, watch for dark stains on ceilings and walls to suggest incorrect plumbing jobs, insufficient lighting, or notably cheap materials.
  • Kitchen remodels with bizarre layouts, inadequate storage, or poor lighting arrangements could indicate a problem. Also, watch for uneven surfaces, apparent seams, and cheap materials.
  • Outdoor spaces, like decks and patios, with gaps or uneven transitions, suggest underlying issues with the structures. Watch for separations from the house, cracks in concrete, or wavy boards.

Note that it’s a red flag if a contractor won’t share samples of past work. Be wary of those who only show finished projects without the “before†pictures. 

Ask For Plans and Bids

When you have a list of finalists, ask them to draw up plans and submit bids for your project. A good home remodeling contractor should provide detailed numbers and blueprints for the project. 

You may want to immediately disregard any lowball offers that could indicate lousy business operations or desperation. Generally, bids should earmark approximately 40% of the total cost for materials and another 15% or 20% as profit.

Get It in Writing

Once you decide on the best contractor for your project, it’s time to get everything in writing. Even if it seems too detailed, adding details to the contract protects you and the contractor. The contract should include at least the following:

  • Payment schedule
  • Proof of the contractor’s insurance and worker’s compensation coverage
  • Project timeline, including start and completion dates
  • Specific materials and products, especially if you request certain brands
  • List of subcontractors and suppliers to be used

You may want to incorporate a provision that the contractor gets a lien release. Adding this requirement can protect you if the contractor fails to settle their bills.

Final Thoughts on Choosing a Home Remodeling Contractor

Reputable contractors should not have anything to hide and won’t pressure you into accepting bids or signing contracts. Like most decisions in life, due diligence and thorough research can save you money and stress down the line.

Now that you know how to choose the best home remodeling contractors in Arizona, isn’t it time to get started on your next renovation?

Home Remodeling with Emery Lane Homes

Emery Lane Homes takes into account all the privy information above & checks all the boxes with soaring colors. Our Co-Founder, Richard, has experience designing & building over 600 homes in the valley. He uniquely built Emery Lane’s construction team to exceed in knowledge, quality & customer service.

We design & build our homes that honor the neighborhood with impeccable craftsmanship that are designed for the lifestyle of the modern family. With an emphasis on open, light-filled rooms and timeless craftsmanship, each Emery Lane Home has its own distinct personality and profile. Emery Lane is truly one of the best Arizona home remodeling contractors.

Our founding partners both have large, busy families which is why each build, whether it’s a full remodel or designed from the ground up, is carefully selected and created to include key features that cater to the demands of today’s lifestyles.

Features that include split floor plans, large master suites, open kitchens and living spaces, bonus flex rooms, indoor-outdoor living, en suite bedrooms, and spacious garages. Interiors are on-trend and hand-selected with licensed design collaborators.

We want all our clients to “Live Life on the Lane!â€