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Red Flags to Watch for When Hiring a General Contractor to Build Your New Home

General Contractors in St Louis New Home ConstructionBuilding a New Construction Home? Here Are Tips to Find the Best Home Building Professional

We talk a lot on here about ways to find the best home builders and contractors. But on the other side of that, it is also important to know what some of the important warning signs that spell trouble with your general contractor.

Red Flags to Watch for When Hiring a General Contractor

Bad Credit or References from Subcontractors

If a contractor isn’t paying their bills, or has fractured relationships with their subcontractors that will impact their ability to work with quality professionals and purchase quality materials. Not to mention that it can be a bad sign of what could come during your business relationship with them. Ask them for a list of subcontractors, and pop over to Experian for a contractor credit report. The phone calls only cost your time, and the credit report only costs about $12, but it can save you thousands.


Does the price sound too good to be true? Has their bid fallen significantly below others? While it may sound like you’re getting a good deal, a substantially low bid more than likely signals that the contractor is cutting materials costs or labor costs, both of which you will pay for in the long run. Poor workmanship or materials lead to damage and deterioration down the road (and often far outside your warranty). Now, that isn’t to say you can only rest comfortably with the highest bid, but drastic departures in pricing should be scrutinized, and when it comes to building quality materials and workmanship should always be a top concern.

Expects Up Front Payment

We hear about it in the news so often, especially in the wake of a damaging storm. But many homeowners get taken by illegitimate contractors who demand full payment upfront, and then never return to start or complete the job. You will see it more home renovation jobs, but, like underbidding, a disproportionately high payment or a request for full payment up front from a contractor is a sign that something is amiss with your contractor, and could signal that they have credit problems with vendors or other issues that could interfere with the quality of your job. An deposit before work begins is typical, and should be expected, but full payment is not.

We can’t stress enough how important doing your homework is before choosing a general contractor. Do your homework. Check online reviews. Ask the hard questions of the builder – and their past clients.

Your home is often the most significant and important investment your will make in your lifetime, and knowing what red flags you should look for can make a huge difference in discovering big problems before trusting a contractor with your investment. And don’t forget to use popular resources like Angie’s List, the BBB, and the St Louis Home Builder’s Association to check your contractor before signing anything.

At Hibbs Homes, we believe in transparency – and in being the advocate of our clients. During our Pre-Build Phase, while we are working with your architect to finalize your home’s design, you’ll get to know our team and the way that we work. Before you ever sign a construction contract, you’ll have a chance to see our work ethic in practice. Click here to learn more about our Pre-Build Process and Price Guarantee.

Interested in talking more about your custom home construction project? We’d love to learn more – and to be your general contractor. Call us at (314) 392-9631 to learn more about our home building process – and to tell us more about your vision for your home.

Ready to interview a general contractor? Click here for tips on Interviewing a Home Construction Contractor.

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