When you prepare to sell your home, you’ll want to conduct a thorough examination to ensure that everything is in working order. Often, a new buyer might find fault with some of the things you’re willing overlook in your current home. As you look through your home, you may determine that your house needs a few projects completed before it’s ready for another family to move in. Create a list of each of the projects that you need to complete. Create a column for the projects you can complete and a column for the projects that require a pro. If you are pressed for time or relocating out of state, it might be better to hire a professional contractor or a maintenance person for everything.
Once you have your list of projects, you can start looking for a contractor to complete them. If you have multiple projects in different areas of your house, you might need more than one person. If you need to renovate a kitchen for example, you might need both a plumber and cabinetry expert. Depending on the size of your project, you may want to hire an electrician, flooring pro, and/or a painter as well.
You can get recommendations for a contractor or home pro from your family and friends. Neighbors are also a great source for recommendations. Some neighborhoods have Facebook groups or other online forums where you can ask questions or get recommendations. Since the other homes in your neighborhood are about the same age as yours, they likely needed (or need) the same repairs that your house or condo needs.
You can also find contractors on sites like https://www.angieslist.com/ or http://www.houzz.com/. On a site like Angie’s List and Houzz, design pros and contractors are vetted before they are recommended. Both sites are free (Angie’s List changed earlier this year) and offer comprehensive lists that you can use to find someone to work on your home. Use sites like these and the recommendations that you receive from friends and family to narrow your list down to about 3-5 professionals. Talk to each of the contractors on your list to determine which of them will best fit your needs. Look for someone who has completed several projects like yours in the past year or so and is familiar with what others are doing to improve their homes in your area.
After you have a list of a few home improvement professionals that you like, ask for and call their references. Inviting someone into your home to do work is a big decision. Do not hire someone without talking to other homeowners that hired this pro in the past. Even if you get a recommendation from a friend or a neighbor, talk to at least one other reference. The work that your pro performed on their house is a good indication of what they will do at your home.
Enjoy the adventure!