NARI is committed to the remodeling industry's professionalism. A NARI member is a professional contractor or company dedicated to you and your family; dedicated to carrying out the remodeling process with the highest regard for integrity and quality; dedicated to our industry and inmproving his or her skills.
Our members have been screened by our Membership Committee and approved by our Board, prior to joining our chapter to ensure that they have an outstanding reputation. All NARI members continue to observe the highest standard of integrity, quality and responsibility to the industry as outlined in our Code of Ethics. Selecting a NARI member is an important first step to ensuring a superior result on your remodeling project.
Choosing a qualified contractor can be an overwhelming task. There are so many home improvement and remodeling companies, products and suppliers it may be difficult to know who to trust or where to start. We hope that this web site will make it easier for you to select qualified professional companies to work with on your project.
In addition to researching our members, you can post a question about the remodeling process, building green, or other related issues. We have also provided a form that homeowners can post a project they would like to undertake. The information you provide is viewable only to our members in the members only area, protected by a password.
Start your home improvement project by selecting a professional, reliable remodeling contractor.
Finding a qualified, professional remodeling contractor need not be a difficult or unpleasant task.
By following these basic guidelines, you will not only make the selection process easier, but you will also be more prepared to make an informed decision that best suits your needs.
Employ a contractor with an established business in your local area. Local firms can be checked through past customers. As tax-paying members of your local community, they are compelled to perform satisfactory work for local homeowners in order for their business to survive. Always be sure that you do business with a company properly licensed to work in your area.
Look for a local member of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI). The NARI logo is the mark of a professional.
In Virginia, contractors must be licensed; the Commonwealth provides a service for consumers to check license status.
Ask for local homeowner references and follow-up on them. Call the references; ask if they were satisfied with all aspects of the contractor's performance. Ask to see the finished projects. Our chapter's upcoming Tour of Home is an excellent way to see projects and talk to the homeowners.
When interviewing the contractors for your project, do not blindly accept the lowest estimate. Ask the contractor why his price is higher or lower than another. Are all contractors planning to build the same project? Have all the contractors considered ALL the details necessary for your project's success? Often times, a higher price may be worth the cost of better materials and service. REMEMBER that your remodeling dollars spent represent a permanent investment in the home you will spend countless hours in.
Choose a company with which you feel at ease and one that is well-matched to the scope and complexity of your particular project.
Who will you choose to wield the hammer on your particular job? That isn't an easy question. Your choice of a remodeling contractor will ultimately determine the success and enjoyment of your investment.
You can increase your chances of having a successful project by conducting qualifying interviews, following up on references and credentials, and considering all aspects of the remodeling project. You need to look for the professional you feel will provide the best all-around service available above and beyond the necessary construction skills.
The following questions will help you establish a company's qualifications and reputation, and help you find the right person for your job.
Look for a company with an established business history in your community. Surviving in any business in today's competitive marketplace is a difficult task. Most successful contractors are proud of their history in the industry.
Also ask whom you should contact if the supervisor is not available. Get exact names and contact phone numbers for all persons who will be involved in the project.
Now is the time to ask questions about work schedules. You should ask: What is your estimate for completion? How early will your crew normally begin work? When will they normally quit for the day? Will I be contacted about delays or changes in the schedule? By whom?
This will give you an idea of how the contractor works and what to expect during the project. Listen carefully to the answer. This is one of the big indicators of the company's work ethic.
In other words, how is your firm organized? Do you have employees or do you hire subcontractors? If you do have employees, what are their job descriptions? Do you use a project supervisor or lead carpenter to oversee the project? Other firms will have additional positions. You should know what parts of your project will be handled by staff, and which will be contracted out to independent contractors.
If you are planning a small project, say replacing the bathroom plumbing, you may be better off hiring a specialty plumbing firm or a bathroom remodeler. However, if your project involves multiple changes, entire rooms or additions, you should consult a full service or design-build firm.
If you are considering a large or involved project, you will need design services. If the contractor does not have design-build capabilities, you should consider hiring an architect. Depending on the size and scope of the project, you may need an architect or structural engineer.
Ask for copies of the insurance certificates to verify coverage. In addition, some states require licensing and registration. If your state does have construction licensing laws, ask for your contractor's registration and license, then confirm the license number and expiration date with your local jurisdiction.
Trade certifications are good indicators of dedication, professionalism and knowledge of the industry. Remodelers are required to meet certain industry criteria to maintain their certifications. NARI offers six designations: Certified Remodeler (CR), Certified Remodeler Specialist (CRS), Certified Remodeler Associate (CRA), Certified Kitchen & Bath Remodeler (CKBR), Green Certified Professional (GCP), Certified Lead Carpenter (CLC), and Certified Remodeling Carpenter (CRC).
The contractor should be able to supply you with a minimum of three references, including names, telephone numbers and addresses. As a follow up to this question, ask how long ago the project was completed and if the contractor can arrange a visit to see the finished job. You should also ask for professional references from suppliers, financial institutions, or subcontractors to verify sound business practices.
This will give you a good indication about the company's customer satisfaction. According to research conducted by NARI, most remodeling businesses attribute over 50 percent of their annual volume to customer referrals; some even claim up to 90 percent or more of their total annual sales.
This will help you determine the contractor's familiarity with your type of project. You should confirm that a good portion of those completed projects were similar to the type of project you are proposing.
Most cities and towns require permits for building projects. Failure to obtain the necessary permits or to arrange obligatory inspections can be illegal. In some cases, if a project violates a zoning law or some other regulations, it may even have to be demolished if there is no way to comply with the law. A qualified remodeling contractor will be conscious of the permit process, and ensure that all permits have been obtained before initiating any work.
You may want to add calling the contractor's suppliers to your list of follow up actions. This will help protect you from mechanics liens for nonpayment by the contractor. Suppliers also can be a source to establish credit history for the company.
Of the many questions you can ask during an interview, the most important question is one you must ask yourself: "Do I feel comfortable with and trust the person I am about to hire?" Your answer to that question should make the hiring decision a little easier.
Reico Kitchen & Bath
Custom View Windows and Doors
Lane Homes & Remodeling, Inc.
Cabinetry & Construction, Inc.
BK Martin Construction, Inc.
Hampden Hill Custom Building
Law Office of Robert F. Moorman, PLC
NARI members hold a number of different types of certiications.
NARI CR members are professional remodelers who provide a full range of remodeling services. To become a CR, candidates must possess skill and knowledge in a broad range of business management and technical skill areas.
NARI CRS members are professional remodelers who focus on specific type of work and serve the needs of homeowners interested in their area of technical excellence, such as concrete and masonry work, electrical work, insulation, mechanical systems, plumbing systems, and roofing and siding.
NARI CKBR members provide remodeling services specific to kitchens and bathrooms. To become a CKBR, candidates must possess skills and knowledge focused on the requirement of materials, layout, and installation of kitchens and bathrooms.
NARI CRA members actively support the remodeling industry in professions such as architects, designers, manufacturers, suppliers, and consultants.
NARI CLC members are the hands-on field personnel who oversee every aspect of the project: customer satisfaction, personnel management, administration, etc. while working on the project.