A Tale of Two Contractors

This post was sponsored by Travelers Insurance; all opinions are my own.

Hey guys!  Whether you’re working on a renovation like the Merc, building a new house, or having some plumbing updated, your contractor is probably THE singular most important decision that you can make. Going into the renovation I wouldnt have thought that, but after almost a year of working with our amazing one, and seeing first hand what happens when you have a crappy one, I stand by that statement.

For those that aren’t fully immersed in the home building/renovation world a general contractor is the guy that runs the show. He hires the sub contractors (like plumbers, electricians, drywallers etc.) and makes sure that everyone is showing up, doing their work, and getting paid. Most subs are pretty loyal to their general, so just like like things attract, if you get a great general, you’ll have great subs.

Like I mentioned earlier, I’ve seen first hand what it’s like when you have a great contractor and a not great one.

Being the unconventional space that the Merc is and unconventional level of DIY that needed to happen, we weren’t sure how to even find a general contractor. The bank and the city told us that we needed one. But where do you even start?! Funny thing, we were initially working with a different one at the beginning of this whole journey. At the last minute he decided to bow out, which at the time seemed pretty devastating, but like everything else in the Merc turned into a huge miracle. Our amazing real estate agents swooped in and somehow convinced Brent Ence of Sagewood Homes to take on our adventure. (I’ve got a whole post coming about all the reasons why we love Brent and his son Dustin, I’m even going to try to get them to do an interview!! But I’ll just say If you’re in southern Utah and are lucky enough to get the chance to work with them DO IT!!) I cannot begin to say how fantastic they are.

As most of you know, my in-laws recently built a new house (you can see it here!) and their experience was the exact opposite of mine. Their contractor was unorganized, dishonest, careless, and a complete joke.

So how do you make sure that you get one like ours, and not one like theirs?!

1 . Get references specifically from their most recent projects. Sure, any reference is great, but wouldn’t it be even better to get some from clients that they’ve worked with in the last 6 months, as well as 5 years ago?

  1. Be extremely transparent. There is something to be said about finding someone that you get along with and that understands your vision from the beginning. If they’re not willing to let you outline and agree to specific expectations then they probably aren’t your person.

Travelers has 10 more tips on their site for hiring a contractor, as I was reading through them I couldn’t help but nod in agreement as I was going down the list. There are so many important things to consider to protect yourself and your home. Check out the full list here, I agree with all 10 of them!

What lessons have you learned from hiring a contractor?

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Source: FS – All – Decorations – Home Decor
A Tale of Two Contractors