Contractor Directory



Local business listings for Ephrata, PA

Gingrich Builders

Tags: Log Homes , Log Cabins , Log Home Kits

(717) 283-4811

Last Updated:
March 29th, 2017

Custom Log Home Builders
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1971 W. Main Street

Ephrata, PA 17522

Handyman Matters of Lancaster York

Tags: Home Repair Ephrata

(717) 464-3510

Last Updated:
January 30th, 2012

Affordable Home Repairs One call get your to-do list done. No job to small, kitchen & bathroom remodel. Bonded & insured Satisfaction 100%guaranteed.
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1780 B Clay Rd

Ephrata, PA 17522


How to Hire a Contractor in Ephrata PA You Can Trust

Hiring a home contractor in Ephrata PA can be nerve-racking. This is especially true if it's a specialized project where you don't have the opportunity to develop a long-term relationship. While there is always a chance that you can get ripped off, the good news is that most Ephrata contractors out there are honest people that care about providing good service. Here are the things to look for to make sure that the contractor you choose fits that description.

Licensed in Ephrata PA

Depending on the type of work to be performed and your location, a home contractor may or may not be required to be licensed. However, most cities and states do require or at least allow businesses to register their names with the state and local government. If a license or other registration is required, not using a contractor that hasn't complied with the requirement is a no brainer. Even if it isn't required, being able to confirm the identity of a contractor and having a way to track them down if something goes wrong is definitely beneficial.

Bonded in Ephrata PA

A bond is an amount of money deposited with a PA or Ephrata agency to provide a source of funds to pay claims against a contractor. Like with licensing, bonds may or may not be required depending on the type or work and local laws. Bonding does provide a huge layer of protection because if a contractor performs poorly or doesn't complete the job, there is a guaranteed source of money to recover from. While you can always sue in court with or without a bond, a contractor who has gone out of business or disappeared without finishing the job is practically impossible to recover from if no bond was posted.

Insured in Ephrata PA

Accidents happen to even the best Ephrata contractors, and could include workers getting hurt, injuries to neighbors or people walking by your property, or property damage to a neighbor's or your own home or vehicles. Depending on the circumstances, your homeowner's policy may or may not cover the damages. If it does, you will still likely be out of the deductible and face a premium increase. A good contractor will be insured so that they can take full responsibility for any damages that arise out of mishaps during their work.

Price Quotes

Price quotes are less black and white. A good Ephrata contractor will often be reluctant to provide a firm quote for a complex project over the phone because your home's layout or other factors can greatly affect what it will take to complete the project. To best get a feel for whether a contractor is being honest, ask questions about what could affect the price, what materials are needed, and how much time they expect the project to take. Talk to several contractors before choosing.

Depending on the nature of the project, some contractors will only give a firm quote after a home visit. They may charge a small fee for the visit because providing a good quote can be time-consuming. Don't skip a contractor who won't provide a free estimate unless you know there are several contractors in the area who do make it a standard practice to provide free estimates for similar work.

Once your quotes are in, be wary of choosing the low bidder. A slightly competitive price may be good, but if it low balls the other quotes by a lot, there is a good chance that you will receive poor work or have the contractor later trying to charge you additional fees.

Contract

Always get your price quote in writing before any work begins. A good contract should include the project deadline, whether materials are covered, what happens if expected costs change, a specific description of the work to be performed, and what happens if the work is late or unsatisfactory. A good contractor will want a good contract because it ensures they are on the same page as the customer so that they can provide good service, and it also protects them from customers who fail to pay or raise frivolous disputes.

References in Ephrata PA

Always check references -- both online and offline. The best way to find a good Ephrata contractor is to ask your friends and neighbors if they recommend anyone. Good contractors often get most of their business by word of mouth. When you search online, the main thing you're looking for is a string of complaints about a contractor. This is the most common reason people leave online reviews.

Positive online reviews are less useful because people are less likely to make time to leave them, they can easily be faked, and sites such as Angie's List may even require the Ephrata contractor to pay before they are posted. If you didn't get any personal recommendations and the online feedback about a contractor is at least neutral, the best thing to do is to ask them for references you can contact and doing the rest of the due diligence outlined above.