I have been a kitchen designer in the Southern California, Los Angeles area for decades. Here’s some advice I give my clients before I go to visit their homes on how to find a reliable kitchen contractor.
How to Find a Reliable Kitchen Contractor
NUMBER 1: Talk to your neighbors, search for companies online, go to home improvement trade shows to find choices.
NUMBER 2: Once you have a list of 3 to 5 construction companies, check out the following:
- Better Business Bureau (A+ Rating!)
- Contractor’s State License Board
- NKBA (National Kitchen and Bath Association)
- Make sure company is licensed, bonded and insured - Our License # is 5978277
- Check out their website for testimonials, photos, etc.
- Look at independent review websites like Google Places and Citysearch. Remember that rival companies can leave bad reviews and that some websites will literally hide good reviews.
NUMBER 3: Get agreement on what you want and prepare your kitchen.
How to Prepare for Your In-Home Design Session and Free Estimate:
- Clear any clutter. The more the designer can see in your kitchen, the less chance for mistakes. So clear out what you can or expect possible changes in design and/or pricing once production starts.
- Get agreement from your spouse and family before calling. Best to make sure all homeowners have a clear idea of what is needed! Time and money can be wasted while details are vague.
- Everyone with a say in the decision needs to be there. For best results, all decision makers should be present during the appointment so all questions can be answered at once.
- Have a vision! Have an idea what you want the end result to be. Don’t be afraid to be specific! Get creative!
- Don't spend every penny. Add 10% cushion to your kitchen just in case. Your designer should be able to help you design within your stated budget.
NUMBER 4: Call and set up your appointment for a free design estimate.
Once you have researched your contractor choices and prepared for your design session, get a free in-home estimate. Your designer should have samples and catalogs. If they don't send them away!
Avoid a world of headaches later! Protect yourself against shady contractors with questionable business practices. Follow my simple advice on how to find a reliable kitchen contractor.