Ethical and Effective Legal
Maddox, Segerblom & Canepa

What You Should Ask to See Before Hiring a Contractor

When embarking on a construction project, whether it’s a home renovation, a commercial build, or any construction work in Nevada, choosing the right contractor is paramount to the project’s success. Hiring a reliable licensed and insured contractor can make the difference between a smooth, well-executed project and a costly, stressful nightmare. To ensure you’re making the right choice, there are essential questions to ask and documents to review before committing to a contractor. 

Types of Questions to Ask at the Initial Meeting with a Contractor

Asking the right types of questions when you meet with the prospective contractor can help ensure that all your bases are covered before construction begins. Nevada construction defect lawyers recommend that you focus your questions around:

Ensuring the Contractor Has Valid Liability Insurance

One of the first things to check when hiring a contractor is whether they have valid liability insurance. Liability insurance is crucial because it protects you as the property owner from being held responsible for accidents or damage that may occur during the construction project.  Liability insurance can also come into play later if there are defective conditions at the property and the contractor refuses to adequately repair.  If the contractor doesn’t have liability insurance, you could be at risk of covering these costs yourself.

Evaluating the Contractor’s Previous Work

Reviewing a contractor’s previous work is a critical step in the selection process. Ask for a portfolio of completed projects similar to yours, and if possible, visit those sites. This allows you to evaluate the quality of their work, attention to detail, and whether their style aligns with your vision. It’s also an opportunity to speak with past clients to gain insights into their experience working with the contractor.

Identifying the Permits Required for the Project in Nevada

Nevada has specific regulations and permitting requirements for construction projects. It’s essential to ask the contractor about the necessary permits and ensure they have experience in obtaining these permits. Failing to secure the proper permits can lead to project delays, fines, or even legal issues.

Establishing Clear Lines of Communication

Effective communication is key to a successful construction project. Ask the contractor about their preferred method of communication and how often they will provide project updates. Having clear lines of communication ensures you’re informed about the project’s progress and can address any concerns promptly.  

Inquiring About the Contractor’s Use of Subcontractors

Many construction projects involve subcontractors who handle specific aspects of the work, such as plumbing, electrical, or roofing. It’s essential to ask the contractor about their use of subcontractors and how they manage and oversee these relationships. Knowing who will be working on your project and their qualifications is crucial for ensuring quality work.

While these questions and considerations are vital for hiring a reliable contractor, always remember to trust your instincts and conduct thorough research. Additionally, seek recommendations from friends, family, or colleagues who have had positive experiences with contractors in Nevada. By taking these steps, you can have confidence that your construction project will be in capable hands.

What Documents Should You Ask for When Hiring a Contractor?

One way to ensure that you’re working with a reputable and qualified professional is to request specific documents that can provide valuable insights into the contractor’s credentials and experience. The key documents you should ask for when hiring a contractor in Nevada include:

License and Insurance Documents

Contractor’s License: In Nevada, contractors are required to be licensed to perform certain types of work. You should ask for the contractor’s license number and verify its validity through the Nevada State Contractors Board (NSCB). The license ensures that the contractor meets specific qualifications and standards. You can also run a search on the contractor’s board website to see if the contractor has any complaints lodged against it.

Insurance Certificates: Request proof of insurance, including general liability and workers’ compensation insurance. This is crucial in case of accidents, property damage, injuries during the project and damages, including construction defects. Verify that the insurance coverage is current and adequate.

Written Contracts and Agreements

Detailed Contract: Ensure that the contractor provides a detailed written contract outlining the scope of work, project timeline, payment schedule, and any warranties or guarantees. Watch out for unreasonable arbitration provisions and request that a prevailing party provision be added if litigation does become necessary. Review the contract thoroughly before signing to avoid potential disputes. It may be a good idea to have an attorney review the contract so that you fully understand your rights and obligations under the contract.

Building Permits and Licensing

Building Permits: Confirm that the contractor will obtain any necessary building permits for the project. Failure to secure required permits can result in legal and safety issues.

Subcontractor Licensing: If subcontractors will be involved in the project, verify that they are also licensed and insured.

Payment Schedule and Financial Documentation

Payment Schedule: Understand the contractor’s payment schedule and payment methods. Be wary of contractors who demand full payment upfront, which is illegal under Nevada law.

Financial Stability: Request evidence of the contractor’s financial stability, such as bank references, to ensure they have the resources to complete the project.

Bonding Information

Bond Information: Depending on the nature of the project, surety bonds may be required to provide financial protection in case of contractor defaults. Request information on any bonds in place for the project.

By requesting these documents and conducting due diligence, you can make a more informed decision when hiring a contractor in Nevada. This proactive approach can help you select a qualified professional and minimize potential risks associated with construction projects.

The Importance of Hiring a Reliable Contractor

When it comes to construction projects, whether it’s a home renovation, a commercial build, or any construction work, the importance of hiring a reliable contractor cannot be overstated. Your choice of a contractor can have a profound impact on the success, quality, and overall experience of the project. To ensure that your construction project proceeds smoothly and meets your expectations, it’s essential to invest time and effort in selecting the right contractor. 

From the beginning stages of planning and permitting to the final touches and finishes, a reliable contractor will guide you through the process with professionalism. While the search for a reliable contractor may require time and effort, the peace of mind and the assurance of a successful project make it a worthwhile endeavor. 

Quality Work and Craftsmanship

One of the primary reasons for hiring a reliable contractor is the assurance of quality work and craftsmanship. Experienced and reputable contractors bring their expertise to the table, ensuring that every aspect of the project is executed to the highest standards. Whether it’s building, plumbing, electrical work, or finishing details, a reliable contractor will have the skills and knowledge to deliver top-notch results.

Reliable contractors are known for their attention to detail. They take pride in their work and are committed to producing a finished product that not only meets, but often exceeds your expectations. Their reputation is built on delivering projects that are built to last, aesthetically pleasing, and free from defects. This commitment to quality and good customer service is a hallmark of a reliable contractor.

Timely Completion and Project Management

A reliable contractor understands the value of time and the importance of completing projects on schedule. Delays in construction can be costly, inconvenient, and frustrating. Reliable contractors are skilled project managers who have the ability to plan and execute projects efficiently. They establish realistic timelines and milestones, and they have the experience to anticipate and mitigate potential delays.

Timely completion is not just about convenience; it also affects your budget. Unforeseen delays can lead to increased costs in terms of labor, materials, and even potential legal or contractual consequences. A reliable contractor will work diligently to ensure that your project is completed within the agreed-upon timeframe, helping you avoid unnecessary expenses and inconveniences or the need to sue the contractor for unfinished work.

Legal Compliance and Permits

Construction projects are subject to a myriad of regulations, codes, and permitting requirements. Reliable contractors have a thorough understanding of local, state, and national building codes and regulations. They know how to secure the necessary permits for your project and ensure that the work complies with all legal requirements.

Failure to adhere to these regulations is a form of construction negligence and can result in costly fines, delays, and even legal disputes. Hiring a reliable contractor who is well-versed in the legal aspects of construction ensures that your project proceeds smoothly and without unnecessary legal complications. It also provides you with peace of mind, knowing that your project is being executed within the bounds of the law.

Accountability and Professionalism

Reliable contractors are accountable for their work and actions. They take their commitments seriously and are dedicated to delivering on their promises. Their professionalism is evident in every aspect of the project, from clear communication and written contracts to transparency in pricing and invoicing. This accountability and professionalism create a trustworthy working relationship that benefits both parties.

In contrast, unreliable or unprofessional contractors may be less accountable for their actions, leading to disputes, misunderstandings, and frustration. By hiring a reliable contractor, you can expect a high level of professionalism and ethics throughout the project.

Avoiding Unpleasant Surprises

Unreliable contractors may provide lower quotes or estimates, but these apparent cost savings can lead to significant hidden expenses and change orders down the road. Whether it’s subpar workmanship, the use of substandard materials, or unexpected project delays, the cost of fixing these issues can far exceed the initial savings.

Reliable contractors may not always be the lowest bidders, but they provide transparent and realistic estimates that reflect the true cost of your project. By hiring a reliable contractor, you are more likely to avoid unpleasant surprises and budget overruns. If you have questions regarding what to look out for or contract review, contact a construction attorney today.

What Our Clients Say

My family and I are thankful to Maddox, Segerblom and Canepa for their assistance during a three year case regarding construction defects to our home. We are truly appreciative of their knowledge, determination and assistance during this process. They were always courteous, and available to answer any and all of our concerns and questions. Thank you for the wonderful resolution. Many thanks to you and your staff.

Frances Castelli

We used Maddox, Segerblom & Canepa to represent us in a legal suit re problems in construction on new properties that we purchased from a developer.

We were very pleased with the representation provided by this law firm. They were fully communicative, responsive to our questions and were very knowledgeable about the issues that required resolution. Even after we reached a resolution, they have been responsive in making sure to point us in the right direction for help with repairs that are required.

We would recommend them to others with similar issues that require legal help.

Atam & Margo Lalchandani

Maddox, Segerblom & Canepa did a FANTASTIC job in our construction defects case. I interacted with several people from their office throughout our 2 year litigation. Their staff is friendly, knowledgeable and always prompt about getting back to you when you have questions/comments/concerns. I especially enjoyed working with Darcy, Ardea, Eva, and Sandra. Being part of a lawsuit is no fun for anyone, but if you have to be a part of one, I can’t say enough positive things about this firm!

Victoria Fox

The law firm of Maddox, Segerblom, and Canepa were amazing to work with. They were thorough and always available for any questions we had. We worked a lot with Sandy who was always professional, friendly, always on time for appointments and just a great person to represent this firm. We have never been involved in a law suit before and they made it comfortable for us. We appreciate the hard work the lawyers and people who work for the firm did and would recommend them.

Becky Loudenburg
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