May 28th, 2017

May 28, 2017

​When it comes to hiring a contractor to perform work on your home, office, or business, you want to find one that’s not just good, but reliable, helpful, and knowledgeable. Finding the right contractor for your needs means you should know what to look for. It’s not just about looking at reviews or star ratings, it’s also about doing your due diligence and understanding what a contractor’s obligations are to you and what yours are to them.


​Here’s a quick checklist of things you should do when looking for a good contractor:

  • Plans/Designs: First, before you do anything, make sure you know what you want. Have a plan or design idea that you can take to a contractor who can then improve upon it.
  • Get Recommendations: Ask your friends for a recommendation. This is a good place to start.
  • Talk to Several Contractors: Don’t just go for the first one you think is good, talk to multiple companies.
  • Look at their Reviews/Work Record: Check out their ratings, see if they have good reviews overall
  • Timeliness: Check out the contractor’s past projects and the turnaround time. If the contractor is taking one year to install a simple project that should take only 1 month, then you know that company is spread thin and may not be the right fit for you.


  • Bids/Pricing: After you find a few good contractors, start asking for bids. Remember, getting bids is a great way to ensure you’re not overpaying for a project. Choose the contractor that meets your price point, but remember it’s not all about the cost. It’s not always smart to go with the contractor that gave you the lowest bid just because their price was cheaper than everyone elses. A bid may be slightly higher than another, but that could be due to better quality materials, service, etc… So remember to look at each bid carefully. 
  • Transparency: Some contractors may not want to discuss the difficult portions of a job up front. Does your contractor paint a thorough picture of what the project will look like? The materials they will use? What about their process? These are all important things to look for. There’s nothing worse than getting several weeks into a project only to discover surprises like changes in materials, cost, or time frame. Again, check the bid carefully to see how thorough it is.

  • Payment Schedules: Once you select a contractor, set a payment schedule. You DON’T HAVE TO PAY THE WHOLE FEE UPFRONT. This is often something that customers forget. You can schedule payments as the work is done. For example, you can put a down payment then pay the rest in portions over time. At the conclusion of construction, you’ve completed payments and have nothing to worry about except enjoying your new digs.
  • Make a Contract: Once you’ve set the payment schedule, make sure you have everything in writing. Include materials, time, payment schedule, designs, total cost, and any other specifics necessary for your project.
​Finding the right contractor takes time. As you can see from the quick list mentioned above, there’s a lot to think about. So, take your time and really do your research. You may want to do more than what’s mentioned here and look at details that are specific to your needs.
When it comes to finding an awning or patio cover contractor, the above list of things to do or think about still applies. Keep in mind you can always call or talk to a potential contractor; this always helps clear up any questions or misconceptions.
Now that you know a little more about what to look for in a good contractor, feel free to contact us at American Awning & Blind Co. for more information by visiting us at Or call us at 800-654-5933. You can also email us at