Begin Planning for Summer Renovations Now: Why Hiring a Contractor Off-Season Can Pay Off

by Alex ThatcherJanuary 30, 2019

Enjoy Peace of Mind by Planning Ahead

If you are thinking about doing some home renovations this summer, then you shouldn’t wait long to hire your contractor. In fact, you might want to start collecting estimates and researching contractors right now. By hiring your contractor during the off-season, you will be able to enjoy several key benefits.

hire a contractor in winter

More Personalized Attention

Contractors tend to have a lot more down time in the winter, and you can use this to your advantage. You will be able to get to know the contractor better, and he will be able to be more attentive to your questions and concerns because he is not being overwhelmed by summer’s busy schedule.

Plan the Project Based on Your Schedule, Not the Contractor’s

Once spring and summer arrive, contractors become very busy. This means if you wait until then to hire your contractor, you will be forced to wait until he can fit your project in along with all his other scheduled jobs. By hiring in the winter, you can set the schedule for your project because the contractor won’t have as many jobs already booked. He will then be scheduling his other clients around your job.

hire a contractor in winter

More Affordable Rates

This is not always guaranteed, but some contractors may be appreciative, knowing they have future work already lined up. Because of this, they may provide you with a discounted rate. It never hurts to ask in any case.

The Contractor Has More Time to Prepare

A home renovation isn’t a small project, and even one-room renovations require a lot of thought and planning. So, the more time your contractor has to plan and prepare for your project, the smoother it will likely go.

If the contractor you choose is a good one, he will have all the material needed to complete your project in advance of starting it, so delays due to material issues will also be avoided.

hire a contractor in winter

7 Tips for Choosing the Right Contractor for Your Summer Project

The success of your project is entirely based on the contractor you hire. Therefore, you need to ensure the one you hire is reputable and professional. Here are seven key things to do to ensure you’re working with a legitimate contractor.

  1. Check and verify the contractor is licensed by the state and that the license is active.
  2. Check and verify the contractor’s proof of insurance.
  3. Contact at least three references, ask about the contractor’s work quality, professionalism, clean-up efforts, and whether their projects were complete on time and on-budget.
  4. Get at least three estimates from different contractors, including often-overlooked costs like repairs and clean-up.
  5. Get a written contract that points out in detail exactly what the contractor will be doing, a payment schedule, and a completion date.
  6. Do not pay more than 20% down, if the contractor is asking for more than that, it is a red flag that he may not have the funds he needs to start the job.
  7. Don’t automatically choose the lowest bid. Often, a much lower price comes with substandard materials and/or workmanship. Do your research to find out which contractor is charging you the fairest rate.

Don’t wait until spring to start looking for your summer contractor. They will already have their summer projects booked by then! Start early, and start now. Do your due diligence and get the contractor you want to do your project. You will enjoy a smoother renovation and an easier summer by planning for it now.

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About The Author
Alex Thatcher
Alex is a home staging guru who moonlights as a writer. She loves everything about interior design and loves working in the industry. Alex is an expert in finding what makes people light up when they walk into a room, and has made a living by creating interiors that are unique, warm and inviting. When she isn't arranging flowers or making sure she's found the right loveseat for prospective buyers, she writes about her passion — home design.