What Are Some Red Flags You’re Dealing With A Bad Full Home Remodeling Company?

What Are Some Red Flags You’re Dealing With A Bad Full Home Remodeling Company?


So you’re in the process of a full home remodeling and things are going great. You’ve been working with your contractor for months, they have a solid timeline in place that’s well communicated to you and it looks like everything will go smoothly until suddenly there is no communication from them. This can be really frustrating because now you’re not sure what’s happening or if anything is even getting done on your project at all.  This post talks about some red flags that may indicate that you’re dealing with a bad full home remodeling company. 

Red Flag #1: No References.

Be wary of a contractor who cannot provide you with references. Prefer a recommendation from someone you know? Consider soliciting personal recommendations from people you trust, such as family, friends, neighbors, or coworkers.

Red Flag #2: No Address Listed

Wouldn’t you want the public to know where you’re working as a contractor? It may seem obvious, but some contractors still do not advertise their address – and this is a red flag to be aware of. If a contractor refuses to provide his work address, it is possible that he is working from home. That may not be a bad thing, unless the contractor is trying to avoid detection. Here are a few pointers to consider when determining whether or not a contractor has a legitimate address: 

  • Look on the website of the contracting company or in old phone books. 
  • You can also try contacting the Better Business Bureau or your local chamber of commerce. 
  • Don’t be afraid to ask the contractor why the business address isn’t disclosed. If he or she avoids the question, it’s probably wise to find another person for the job.

Red Flag #3:  No Permit

Avoid contractors who claim they will not require any permits to begin building, repairing, or remodeling. If there is no permit, there will most likely be no professional tradesmen on the project, and there will be no way for city inspectors to verify that everything is done to code.

A permit not only requires a government inspection to ensure that everything is structurally sound, but it can also improve home insurance coverage. For example, if you lack a building permit and damage occurs to the newly remodeled area, your insurance may not cover the replacement or liability costs. And depending on your home’s location, a permit might be necessary for changing the roofline, putting in new electrical wiring or plumbing, adding a deck, or building a new room.

Red Flag #4 : Door to Door Solicitation

Although legitimate businesspeople may solicit door-to-door, be cautious and conduct thorough research before hiring a contractor who has knocked on your door. Chip Voelsch, owner of BellaVita Builders, Inc. in Geneva, Ill., advises against hiring contractors who arrive at your door. Just keep in mind that not all door-to-door salespeople are dishonest.

Red Flag #5: No Certification or Insurance

Without insurance, a contractor is like pizza without cheese: it’s just not right. For example, if a contractor does not have insurance and something goes wrong on the job, you are liable for the cost of the damages. So, how do you find out if they’re insured? Request that the insurance company mail or email you the contractor’s certificate of insurance. Accepting a copy is risky because it may not be authentic.

Red Flag #6: Full Payment Requested Prior to Starting Any Work

Another red flag to be aware of is a contractor who demands the entire cost of the project up front. You should never pay the entire cost at once, especially if the contractor hasn’t even begun working on your project yet.

Red Flag #7: No Written Contract

What’s another red flag that can help you spot a shady home builder? Answer: a contractor who fails to provide a written contract outlining the terms and conditions of the entire project.

A contract or proposal is essential for any job, no matter how big or small. There is nothing to hold the contractor accountable if there is no contract. Things are always forgotten or misunderstood. The contract should include project details, such as products and brand names with serial numbers, as well as the total price, including labor. And any changes made along the way must be documented and signed in a change order.

Are You Planning a Full Home Remodel?


If you’re considering a whole house remodel, New Key Construction, based in Walnut Creek California, is here to serve you. Our passion is to be the home for talented craftsmen who deliver beautiful projects to clients throughout the SF East Bay Area! Choosing the right general contractor for your project can be difficult, but we make things easy by focusing on Your Experience, Client Communication, Cutting Edge Technology, and Pushing Our Design and Build Limits!  If we could have one goal, it would be that when someone you know is looking for a contractor you highly recommend our company because of the experience we deliver for you! Check out our website, our portfolio, and our reviews to learn more – or give us a call today!