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How to Get a Reliable General Contractor in Los Angeles

How to Get a Reliable General Contractor in Los Angeles By Laura Horwitz
HIPhome Columnist
December 31, 1969

Finding a general contractor can be a hassle in itself, but finding one in Los Angeles adds its own unique problems. So what should you do to guarantee you'll get reliable service that will meet your needs?

Los Angeles has a highly competitive market, meaning you can often bargain with your general contractor for the best rates, especially if you have seen someone else advertise the same job for less. However, be wary of anything that seems too good to be true. When it comes to home improvement, you do usually get what you pay for.

Most general contractors in LA should be fully versed in the latest earthquake codes and safety precautions, and for those with homes on hillsides, ask your contractor about mudslide risks. Remember, in this west coast city the phrase "movers and shakers" refers to the landscape just as much as those Hollywood hot shots.

Tips for Getting a Good General Contractor

  • In this case, the more history someone has, the better. Find someone who has been in the business at least five years.
  • Check up on that past–longevity doesn't always equal reliability. Ask your contractor for references from satisfied customers, and make sure at least one of those references is recent. And do actually follow-up and talk to those customers yourself, don't just take the contractor's word for it.
  • Ensure that the Los Angeles General Contractor you've chosen is listed with the Better Business Bureau.
  • Ask any general contractor you're considering for proof of liability insurance.
  • Get all of the details for your home improvement project in writing including price, expected time frame, materials to be used--everything.


Finally, you or your contractor must have the necessary building permits. In Los Angeles, it is a law that you need a permit for any work that can be seen from the street.

Sources

Los Angeles General Contractor
Los Angeles Home Improvement & Remodeling Contractors

About the Author
Laura Horwitz has worked as a freelance writer and researcher for five years in both London and the US. She had a monthly landscaping and tips column for the Sussex County magazine RH Review, and her articles have also appeared in Film Focus, 6 Degrees Film, and BizBash magazine.



*Before you apply any of the advice described on the Hip-home.com website, you should consider if the advice is safe and suitable for your individual home situation and consult experts as necessary to evaluate the suitability for your circumstances.
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