Hiring a Contractor For Your Next Stone Project
Although all of Norstone products are DIY friendly, sometimes you just don’t have the motivation to learn or time to install your next stone project yourself. Hiring a contractor can be a daunting task for someone without experience or knowledge in construction, so here’s some tips and strategies for finding and hiring a contractor that will meet and hopefully exceed your expectations.
The first step is to find a handful of qualified contractors and speak with them about your project. It’s so important to talk with as many contractors as you can – you’ll gain insight from each of them about different aspects of your project that you might not have thought of and also begin to draw some comparisons among the different contractors based on what and how they communicate with you. Ask for references and find out about their experience in this type of installation and how long they’ve been setting tile.
References are always good places to find contractors that do quality work, so ask your friends and neighbors, both in person and digitally whom they might recommend. Websites like Houzz, Thumbtack, and Angies List are good places as well to find contractors, and never underestimate going down to your local tile and stone center, perhaps the same place you might be sourcing tile from, and ask for recommendations as well.
Once you’ve identified a list of contractors you’d like to receive quotes from for your project, the next important step is making sure the contractors know what they are bidding and when you receive quotes, make sure you understand what’s included with each quote. If demo is necessary is that included? What about trash removal and project area clean up during and when the job is complete? If a special substrate or waterproofing membrane is needed, has that been included in the bid? Who’s buying the materials? If you’re comparing a few different contractors, listing everything out in a spreadsheet is a good idea to make sure when you follow up with a specific contractor, you know what questions to ask about.
Selecting the best contractor for the job is often a mix of personal impressions, references and recommendations, perceived quality, price, and a fair amount of gut instinct as well. Once a contractor has been selected make sure everything that has been discussed is in writing, get a clear understanding of the payment schedule, estimated time line to completion, and warranty on their craftsmanship. Recognize that not all tile installations go perfectly, sometimes you don’t know the full extent of a project till you start demo, and its not always the contractors fault if the tile is back-ordered or some of it shows up damaged, so establish a good working relationship with your contractor from the start through to the completion of an amazing project. Take a minute to browse our Stone Project Gallery for ideas and inspiration for your next project and contact us at Norstone USA to discuss how our stacked stone panels, interlocking mosaic wall tiles, or three dimensional honed panels might be a great fit for your next project.