What Should Be in a Remodeling Contract

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A written contract with a contractor is an agreement between a homeowner and the contractor to perform work and services in a certain amount of time, for a specific dollar amount and using specific materials.  Before you sign a contract with a contractor take a look at the information specified in the agreement.  It should include these features and details for a remodeling project.

*Contractor’s name, address, telephone, cell and pager numbers and license information
*Homeowner’s name, address, home and business telephone and cell numbers, and location of the job site
*Detailed job description of work to be completed
*Description of how the surrounding area will be protected from the work area
*Description of daily and end-of-job cleanup work to be completed
*Itemized list of all material used naming the brand, model number, size, color, style and other information about the material
*Copies of drawings and specifications
*Starting and completion dates of work
*Time of day that workers are expected to arrive and leave the site
*Specifications regarding the work performed will meet or exceed the building code
*Responsibility of who will pay for and obtain any required building permits
*Financial terms clearly stated and including the total price, payment schedule with penalty for cancellation or incentive for completing the job before deadline
*Required homeowner’s signature for approval before work begins
*Procedure for implementing change orders when work is underway
*Right of homeowner to cancel the contract within three days of signing it
*Clause about binding arbitration that allows both homeowner and contractor to resolve a dispute without involving lawyers
*Warranty covering materials and workmanship for a minimum of one year
*Commitment about homeowner not being liable for a third party claim for nonpayment of materials or subcontractors

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