More Reasons to Get Multiple Bids

More Reasons to Get Multiple Bids

Dabney Frake
Mar 23, 2012

You've heard the advice about getting multiple quotes when starting a renovation project. Usually, it's all about weighing your options and getting the best price. Which is absolutely true. But each encounter is also an opportunity to build your own skill set, and gain experience as the person hiring for, and ultimately managing, the job.

Industry Knowledge: If you are new to renovation, this is a great time to learn about materials and process from the bidding contractors. Listen carefully to lingo, ask questions, and incorporate any new tidbits into your mental database. "Oh, you would use a flange with a extra-thick wax seal? Interesting. Why is that?"

Project Management Skills: Often professionals will think of things to include in, or remove from, your scope of work. This can help you anticipate problems down the road, or save you from replacing something that just needed an easy repair. Do you need a new sliding glass door, or can you just swap out the rollers on the existing one to make it good as new? If so, is there a chance it still won't work?

Valuable Resources: Contractors will often share their favorite places to get materials. Sometimes this has more to do with their relationship with said company, but they can also be truly great places to shop for tile, or local businesses with an excellent reputation. This insider info is a really helpful leg up as you start your shopping, especially if you are new to the area. Be sure to thank them for it.

Confidence Level: All this gained knowledge will give you good street cred with subsequent contractors. Think how good it will feel when you are able to utter the words, "Do you plan on using a flange with an extra-thick wax seal on that?" to the next guy.

So when a contractor comes through, take notes, learn, and keep it all in your back pocket for the future. But don't take up too much of their time, especially if you know they aren't right for the job; remember, they are there to run a business, not simply to educate you.

Happy renovating!

(Image: Shutterstock)

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