As summer arrives and home improvement projects get moved to the front burner, West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey offered up some tips for successful work.
Morrisey said your first task should be to get as specific as possible about the work you want done. The better you are able to articulate your desired outcome, the more likely you'll get it. Then go about the process of preparing a budget. It's difficult to estimate all of the possible expenses, but having a sense of what you want to spend will help guide decisions as you go through the renovation.
Once you know what you want and how much you are willing to pay, you then need to find a contractor. Consult with co-workers, friends and family, as well as online resources to consider you best options. After compiling a list of options, call each contractor and perform an initial screening.
Follow up the phone interviews with a face to face meeting. You can discuss your project in greater detail and get a sense of the contractor's communication style. You'll want to feel comfortable with the contractor, as they will likely have access to your property.
Morrisey said once you've selected your contractors, you'll want to get everything in writing with a contract, “we want to make sure, that they layout the terms in the contract. They need to have the exact pricing, so they're not coming back weeks or months after saying I said it should be a particular date. You want to make sure they lay everything out and there is a meeting of the minds in advance."
Morrisey offered one final piece of advice. He said it's not always the lowest bid that leads to the best results. People's homes are often are their largest investment and trying to save a little bit of money, if it means the project won't be completed correctly, can negatively impact the value of your home.