Everything You Should Know About Subcontractors

by Gail Brumfield

A subcontractor is an individual or company that carries out certain tasks on behalf of the main contractor. The need for a subcontractor may arise due to a number of issues including a lack of tools or expertise by the main contractor. Some examples of subcontractors that can be hired include electricians like Robertson Electric, plumbers, landscapers, painters and roofers. For subcontractors to remain relevant in a competitive world they must ensure that they build a good reputation.

It is vital to use a reputable sub-contractor in order to protect your investment. With the recent ravaging scenes left behind by natural disasters, like wild fires and hurricanes, the crucial role played by sub-contractors is front and center. When you hire a sub-contractor you are putting your business in their hands. Ultimate confidence and trust is placed in the hands of these craftsmen. It is imperative to hire qualified sub-contractors to ensure the quality of the numerous construction projects for which they are hired.

There are a myriad of jobs that are hired out to sub-contractors. Almost every aspect of construction has a different contractor that carries out that particular task. There are electricians, plumbers, framers, dry wallers, painters, landscapers and the list keeps going. A handyman might know how to repair a little bit of any part of your structure, but for large and detailed jobs, you need a specialist. Since there are so many skill sets involved in construction be sure your contractor has specific experience in the particular job you need accomplished.

When completing an entire structure, one contractors ability to complete a job usually depends on another’s ability to complete a job. An example of this is the job of an electrician. The electrician needs to install the electric lines completely and accurately before the dry wall can be installed. There are several different instances of this during an entire build. It is another reason to verify the company that you hire. The work they do can create a negative chain reaction if there are quality issues. Costs to repair a botched job quickly escalate if it negatively effects other aspects of the build.

Electrician Installing SocketUsing experienced workers is another way to conserve costs and stay on budget. Someone experienced in doing a particular job has prior knowledge about problems and issues that tend to arise. They will also have experience in what materials and tools best accomplish the task at hand. Both of these aspects equate to money saving decisions. There is no need to experiment with materials or techniques that are unfamiliar. Short cuts and money saving decisions are more easily made when the contractor can predict how the job needs to be completed.

The more experienced a sub-contractor is chances are they have been in business for a longer amount of time and are more reliable to rectify a mistake. Mistakes do happen and problems do arise. When you use someone who has been in business longer, there are better chances that they are properly insured to cover liabilities. There is also a better chance of that person having the capital and means to rectify problems. In the unfortunate event that financial compensation is a part of fixing the problem, a more established business typically has more financial backing.

A more established business has worked hard to gain and maintain a good reputation and they will not want it tarnished. It is not easy to earn a good reputation. It is difficult to get people to vouch for a business. It is even more difficult to get someone to personally refer someone to use a particular business. A contractor or business that worked hard enough to have this kind of reputation will work just as hard to maintain it. When a problem or issue does come up, that contractor will usually go out of there way to rectify or fix the issue. They understand how they deal with problems is just as important as the final product. After they have spent years working on building a good name it is certain they will not be willing to let one issue on one job destroy that time investment. Happy clients only equates to more work and an experienced sub-contractor understands this point. Fly by night contractors do not have reputations to defend. This type of contractor usually works in several different states, traveling to a different state for new clients instead of relying on referrals.

It is easy to select the lowest bidder that will complete the job in the least amount of time. This is particularly true after a natural disaster when you are facing homelessness or joblessness. However, do not succumb to this potentially financially devastating risk. Take the time to shop around for a sub-contractor. Check references, credentials and insurance coverage of the sub-contractor before you even ask for a bid. When you do select a few companies, get more than one bid to be certain that you are getting a fair price. All of this ground work might sound like a big time investment and often it is. However, this time investment will secure the substantial financial investment made in hiring a sub-contractor. It is easy to find reputable sub-contractors if you are prudent.