Hire a Contractor
If you have scheduled a major home improvement project, you can save yourself money and possible grief by hiring a trustworthy contractor. The California Contractors State License Board (CSLB) warns homeowners to be on the lookout for scams where contractors promise reduced prices in exchange for fast cash.
To avoid being a victim, follow CSLB’s recommendations when hiring a contractor:
- Hire only licensed contractors. You can check a contractor’s license number at (800) 321-2752 or http://www.cslb.ca.gov/.
- Get three references and review past work.
- Get at least three bids.
- Get a written contract and don’t sign anything until you completely understand the terms.
- Pay no more than 10% down or $1000 (whichever is less) as a down payment.
- Don’t let payments get ahead of work and keep records of payments.
- Don’t pay cash and refuse to pay up front for materials.