Do your homework before hiring a contractor

Contact: Jennifer Bowen
(334) 269-3550


If Hurricane Michael has left you in need of repairs, it’s important to do your homework to ensure you aren’t a victim of fraud.


Before you hire a contractor, make sure they’re licensed by the Alabama Home Builders Licensure Board. Jobs costing more than $10,000 require a contractor be licensed. Any roofing job exceeding $2,500 requires a roofer to hold a residential roofing license. You can perform a licensee search at


In addition to making sure a contractor is licensed, get references. Ask former clients if they were pleased with the work and if it was completed on schedule. Find out if the project incurred any unexpected costs and if the client would hire this person again.


It’s worth asking friends and family for referrals if they’ve had work done by someone who completed the job in a timely and professional manner.


Before choosing a contractor, always get multiple bids on a project.


Have detailed conversations with your contractor about what you want, what the costs will be, how to resolve any unexpected issues that may arise during the project and what the timeline is for completing the work. 


Don’t sign a contract until you understand the terms. Ask questions and take the necessary time to make sure you know what you’re signing.


Always ask a contractor for proof of insurance.


Finally, don’t pay in full up front. Work out a payment schedule and don’t make the final payment until the work is completed to your satisfaction.