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Top Tips for Interviewing and Hiring a Commercial Contractor
You have a dream! You may be ready to increase production by building a new factory. Maybe you want to take advantage of a great land deal and add a new subdivision on the west end of town. In either case, you need a commercial contractor to take on the heavy lifting of design and construction. Before you sign a contract, take some time to learn how to identify a contractor that is best suited to your needs.
Research and Recommendations Start the Process
Whether you are building a single storefront or a new industrial complex, first you will need to do your due diligence in finding the right contractor. Ask your colleagues for recommendations. If they found the building process relatively free of stress and love the result, those are good signs of a quality contractor.
Your research must include verifying the current licenses and insurance of the contractor. Check with the Better Business Bureau and professional associations for reviews and comments. Your legal department can look into any existing or past court cases that are related to the business.
Stay away from contractors with a poor credit rating and lapsed licenses, as that may be an indication that they do not compensate their subcontractors appropriately.
Meet the Contractor in Person
When you hire a commercial contractor, you are not hiring the guy swinging the hammer. You are creating a partnership with a management group that in turn hires all of the actual workers and equipment. For this reason, you want the primary contact at the company to have excellent communication skills. Are they professional and responsive to your calls, emails, and texts? Are they prompt to meetings and how many projects have come in on time or even early?
If you walk away from the interview feeling unimpressed, that may be an indicator that you will want to work with another group. After all, even the smallest commercial projects often last a year or longer.
Matching Scope and Capabilities
If you are building a small strip mall or a few homes in a new development, you may want to work with a family- operated contractor. When you are planning on a major project that involves adding infrastructure to the city’s services, your commercial contractor should have the people and experience to tackle the more complicated project. Larger contractors will have the bigger project team and specialists on the payroll ready to meet with city and state officials while providing the precise information needed to obtain permits. A smaller business is more likely to handle all parts of the building process personally, This works when the scope of the job does not overwhelm their offices.
The Low Bid is Not Always the Winner
Now that you have a few potential contractors in mind, it is time to start receiving bids. While a new business may give you a lower number to get their company off the ground, a low bid can also be a sign of poor build quality. A reliable contractor will not underbid the project, as they know exactly how much supplies, manpower, and equipment is required and just how much that costs. Invite each group to make a presentation where they can justify the expenses and savings particular to their bid.
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When searching for a well-connected urban area to develop your business, Kent, WA may tick all your boxes. Centrally located between the Tacoma and Seattle metropolitan centers, this city of over 130,000 boasts not only a stable population but all types of transportation to support your distribution network. Settled in 1850, it is now home to some of the world’s largest corporations including Amazon and Boeing. The West Hill and Valley sections of the city are well-connected to Interstate 5, Sea-Tac International Airport, and the Sound Transit Light Rail system.
The residential part of the city is situated in the East Hill section features expansive subdivisions that have access to the extensive city park system. Clark Lake offers scenic walking trails highlighted by art installations by local crafters. Lake Meridien Park includes a public boat launch and swimming. The Meridien Valley Country Club boasts a 4-star restaurant, condos and apartments overlooking the fairways, and 18-holes of golf. Shopping for East Hill includes the Crossgate, Great Wall, and Westfield Southcenter Malls offering a huge variety of shops, eateries, and entertainment all within an easy drive of the city neighborhoods.