Top 7 Questions To Ask When Hiring a Contractor

Plans on table.

Hiring Tip #3: Is the Bid Itemized?

Getting a detailed, itemized bid allows you to compare different bids based upon what is being charged in both labor and materials for each part of the job.

Many contractors will give a price for the entire project, but it’s important to also know what is being charged for each part of the job, along with the type of materials and any maximum allowances for specific items.

For example, if you hire a contractor to build a deck with white vinyl rails, and you end up deciding upon wood rails, the overall price should come down. Without an itemized bid, you will not know what the difference in price should be.

Having itemized bids also makes it easier to compare bids from different contractors. If a contractor submits a much higher or lower price than other bids, an itemized bid will allow you to see why.

Providing a itemized bid is not that difficult for the contractor to do, and it’s important for protecting both you and the contractor against misunderstandings. If a contractor refuses to provide an itemized bid, it may be best to look elsewhere.

You May Also Like:

See All


Please Leave a Comment

3 Comments on “Top 7 Questions To Ask When Hiring a Contractor”

You can follow comments to this article by subscribing to the RSS news feed with your favorite feed reader.

  • Thomas Says:
    October 22nd, 2014 at 8:33 am

    It’s a good list, but it could use more questions.

  • Retta Elliott Says:
    July 20th, 2014 at 6:20 am

    I just luv u men, thanks 4 all tips & tricks. 4 b n a single lady…I enjoy watching & viewing yas web site. Thank ya..enjoy tis weather n the south

  • Terrie@Basalite Says:
    July 7th, 2014 at 5:44 pm

    This is a really good start when it comes to asking the right questions of any contractor you’re considering. However, there are more things to consider when hiring a contractor. We recommend asking the contractor for references, for example, and pictures of prior projects. Knowing what their cleanup routine is can also save you a lot of headache. It’s a good idea to write out all of your questions before you sit down with a contractor, so that you don’t forget anything during the evolution of the conversation.

We want to hear from you! In addition to posting comments on articles and videos, you can also send your comments and questions to us on our contact page or at (800) 946-4420. While we can't answer them all, we may use your question on our Today's Homeowner radio or TV show, or online at

 characters available

Top 7 Questions To Ask When Hiring a Contractor