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Categorized | Tips & Tools

What to Look For When Hiring Subcontractors

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How do contractors cope with the peaks and valleys of an increased workload? Using the specialized skills of a subcontractor can help a construction or remodeling company increase business, meet clients’ needs, and keep experts focused on work they perform best.

Daniel Patrick Donohue, owner of Oak Knoll Woodworking, has designed hundreds of kitchens, bathroom, office, and living room cabinets and has many years of experience working with contractors on new homes and remodels. After selling his interest in a successful cabinet business 15 years ago, Daniel moved to Oregon and began a new business in Klamath Falls, which has quickly grown through word-of-mouth.

“There are definite things to look for when hiring a subcontractor,” Daniel says. “Of course, you want to make sure they are licensed. Also look for quality, service, and dependability. Remember, a subcontractor’s action and performance will reflect on a general contractor’s name and reputation and must be selected carefully. Reliability is important so other subcontractors are not held up waiting for work to be done. Also, find a subcontractor that is friendly and respectful that clients feel comfortable with in their home.”

In addition to finding the right subcontractor, it’s important to establish a good working relationship with subcontractors to minimize problems and misunderstandings. Here are three tips:

  • Define expectations. Make sure the scope of work is as detailed as possible and that the subcontractor clearly understands it.  Fewer misunderstandings will result if preferences are known up front. For example, clearly specify if a subcontractor should take the reins and be creative or follow specific instructions.
  • Communication is important when working with other companies or specialists. It’s important to keep each other up-to-date. If there are any delays, additions, or changes, be sure and let the subcontractor know in advance and discuss in detail.
  • When good subcontractors have proven their worth, hire them again for all remodeling and new construction projects. Having a highly qualified team available helps with future contracts. A good partnership benefits both the contractor and subcontractor.

If a homeowner is hiring a subcontractor for a smaller project, the process for selecting subs is the same as for a contractor: get and check referrals, collect bids, narrow the field, and make the decision. Oak Knoll Woodworking brings a combination of professionalism and a passion for woodworking to every project. Their goal is to provide a lifetime of service to repeat customers and general contractors.  To learn more about this unique company, visit their profile on BuildZoom at http://www.buildzoom.com/contractor/oak-knoll-woodworking.



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