Any time you hire a contractor to work inside your home, watch for any red flags. If the job has gone completely sideways, if you ever feel unsafe around the crew, or if there are significant problems determining if your contractor is operating legally, you must feel comfortable terminating the employment. Here are notable red flags to watch for:
The pro isn’t licensed, bonded or insured
A license means that the contractor is legally recognized by the issuing state. Every state has varying requirements for licensing (including exams) as well as varying dollar amounts for bonding and insurance. It’s recommended to do some research first and understand what the contractor should have in order to work as a contractor in your state. Bonding ensures that the homeowner is protected if the work is incomplete. Insurance is similar to other types of insurance: if a pro injures themselves, the homeowner or the property while on the job, insurance can cover the costs.
Wrong drywall ordered or improperly installed
Several types of drywall and several thicknesses are available. You have options from 1/4” up to 1-inch in thickness, although ½” drywall is the preferred thickness. Multiple coatings are available such as sheetrock coating, water barrier or fire barriers. Ensure that you are ordering the right material to meet your needs.
Types of drywall to consider for your project:
- Foil backed
- Square edge
- Cement board
Ideally, choose a drywall that is fire-resistant and contains a moisture barrier. In apartment or multi-family living situations, soundproof drywalls are the preferred. Cement board is good for basement areas. Abuse-resistant drywall is optimal for kid’s rooms and play areas to avoid destruction. Ensure that your contractor is ordering what you prefer to use and that he or she understands the needs of the space. Although you may not need to terminate your contract if the wrong materials are ordered, be sure you aren’t paying for the professional’s mistakes.
Drywall needs to be secured into studs or support beams in order for it to stay in place. If there are any questionable dangers upon job completion, this is grounds for termination. The crew should correct the problem, if they refuse or unable to, it’s best to fire them and seek an alternative.
Unexplained crew disappearance and no-shows
Before you hire a drywall contractor, discuss the day-to-day expectations for working hours and establish who is the employee in charge. The homeowner shouldn’t have to manage the crew however the homeowner should be aware of unusually long breaks or obvious mis-uses of time spent on the job. Taking a short coffee or lunch break is expected but if the crew disappears for long lengths of time or you see excessive cell phone use, report it to the person in charge.
Workers should always be prompt, or early to a job site. Being late, without having a valid reason, is concerning. This usually their personal lives have taken precedent over your project your paying them for. Communication is key when workers are scheduled in your home.