Wait, who is that guy? ……Contractor Vetting and references

You’re waiting for bids, they start trickling in,,,Bob who you’ve heard good things about, but don’t know that well is your low bidder and you want to make sure he’s your guy.  Here is my basic approach of how to make sure.  http://youtu.be/RkMrNeWL6DA

Line up the bidders side by side in chart format into various categories and check out the references in a logical manner:

It is so important to ask questions and listen carefully for answers both spoken and implied.

contractor reference 1 reference 2 reference 3
how do you know them?
how many times have they worked for you before?
have you refered them to others? Any feedback?
describe the project
approx dollar value
when did you do the work?
did they finish on time?
any issues?
how much did they subcontract? (approx %)
site safety?
schedule ok?
easy to deal with?  Quality?
did they ask for many extras?
did they provide lien waivers or receipts when paid?
cleanup and general vibe?
 permits / closeout?
would you use them again?
anything else you think we should know ?
Any special insurance you required?

Like most analysis, it’s part science and part art. Make you’re comparing “apples to apples”.  Some contractors can be very creative in their assessment of what a substitute “apple” is.

You have to remember , nobody is going to give you a weak reference. You are going to have to read between the lines, to get to where the real issues lie. i.e the pause in the response when you ask  “How much did they follow the schedule?”


You’ll need to interpret the answers and get a feel for the right guy, If you have any questions, please call Steve 914 980 5532!