5 Tips for Hiring the Best Tenant Improvement Contractors in Vancouver WA


Undergoing a construction project is a very involved process. Planning smartly and being as knowledgeable as possible will help things go smoothly. And, of course, hiring the best contractors is essential. You don’t just want to go with the cheapest one or the first you can find. Read on for some helpful tips for finding the best commercial contractors in Vancouver, WA.

1. Choose a Contractor That Has a Lot of Experience

Make sure the contractor’s experience includes a number of previous commercial tenant improvement projects, particularly projects similar to the one you’re planning. More experience means that your tenant improvement contractor has more knowledge, better solutions, and usually a higher quality of work.

Plus, they will already know the laws and regulations as well as own the necessary equipment to use for the specific type of job. And their experience likely means they can complete the project more efficiently. A tenant improvement project can be very stressful, but having trust in an experienced contractor will make you feel confident about the results.

2. Ask Around for Recommendations of the Best Commercial Contractors in Vancouver, WA

While you can search for contractors near you online, that can give you a lot of options. Meanwhile, a personal recommendation from someone you trust can be an advantage. Especially if you know someone who underwent a similar tenant improvement construction job to what you’re planning. This gives you reassurance that the contractors are skilled and trustworthy.

In addition to asking around, make sure to do thorough research. The contractors should have some testimonials from past projects, often on their websites. Check out the reviews online as well, and read as many as you can, even the negative ones. If something went wrong with a previous job, you want to make sure that doesn’t happen to you.

When you do speak to your potential tenant improvement contractors, ask them to provide some references. And be sure to contact as many of those references as you can. Also, see if they can specifically provide references for past projects that are similar to yours. In some cases, the contractor might have a list of references with their contact information. It also might be worthwhile to go see some of their previous work in-person. Sometimes, a picture isn’t enough to get a really good idea of the actual quality of the work.

3. Make Sure You Can Effectively Communicate with the Contractor You Plan to Hire

While a website, in addition to testimonials from others, can be very helpful, it might not give you the full picture. You want to be assured that they clearly understand your goals and your timeline for the project. See if they have a number of ideas for how to achieve what you want, and ensure they’re able to clearly communicate these ideas to you. Ask if they’ll be keeping you updated regularly (they should). And, of course, make sure they’re listening to you and really taking in everything you’re saying. A personable, trustworthy contractor with whom you’re compatible is usually a great sign.

If you get a bad gut feeling while speaking to a contractor or have trouble communicating with them, you probably should not ignore that. Depending on the size and scale of your project, you could be working with them for a long period of time. You don’t want to feel uncomfortable communicating your thoughts or be hesitant to ask questions. If you get along well in the interview, on the other hand, it will likely indicate a good working relationship.

4. Know the Contractor’s Credentials and What They Mean

The right credentials will reassure you that the contractors are established and reputable. You should ask any of the Vancouver, WA, commercial contractors you’re considering hiring to provide their contractors’ licenses, insurance, bonding, and references. And double-check them as well, verifying with the right authorities that they’re legitimate. If you don’t and something goes wrong during the job, it could be incredibly ruinous for you. Do not, under any circumstance, hire a contractor that isn’t licensed. Having a license shows they’re credible and will know the building codes and safety measures. Be sure their insurance is valid as well. The bonding will be a way to protect yourself.

Also, look at the Better Business Bureau to check their rating and make sure they’re accredited. To find the best commercial contractors in Vancouver, WA, the Better Business Bureau’s website is a great reference. If possible, look into your local chamber of commerce as well.

As an added bonus, see if there are any awards the contractors have won. This will also likely be shown on their website.

5. Make Sure the Vancouver, WA, Commercial Contractors Can Work Within Your Budget

Your budget is one of the first things you should figure out before construction. This keeps you thinking realistically when planning the construction and design. And it will also make things easier for the contractors themselves. The best tenant improvement contractors should be able to work with almost any budget range. Be sure to ask for their estimate in writing.

At the same time, however, don’t make price your only deciding factor. If one contractor gives you a price that seems too good to be true, it probably is. Sometimes, the saying, “You get what you paid for,” turns out to be correct. This may be an indication that the contractor cuts certain corners that they shouldn’t or uses subpar materials in their work. Instead, make the quality of the contractor’s work your main deciding factor.

When you’re looking for the best commercial contractors in Vancouver, WA, take a look at Robert Hakes Construction. We even have an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. You can find more information about our experience on our website. You’ll also find testimonials, examples of our work, a breakdown of our services, and more.

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