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There are many things to consider when you are hiring a decking contractor. Many of the same factors apply when you are hiring any home improvement contractor. You need to make sure the company is licensed, insured, qualified and reputable.

Any legitimate contractor should be licensed by your state’s official licensing entity. In Virginia the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation (DPOR) issues contractor’s licenses. There are a host of classes and tests required by DPOR to qualify for a contractor’s license. The State of VA also breaks down contractor’s licenses in categories of A, B, C. These letter classifications correspond to the total value amount the contractor is qualified to write contracts for. Class A contractors have no limits to the value of contracts they can sign. While Class B contractors are limited to $150,000 and Class C are limited to $10,000. In addition to setting limits on the monetary amount of a contract, DPOR classifies each contractor’s license with a designation. For example, some designations are RBC (Residential Building Construction), CBC (Commercial Building Construction), ELE (Electrical), and HIC (Home Improvement Construction). These designations are important in the fact that not all contractors are allowed to perform the same type of work. It is vital to ensure the deck contractor you hire is licensed in the state they are working in and has the correct class and classification of contractor’s license.

Another critical step in hiring a contractor is to make sure you ascertain whether they are insured and for how much. The two most critical insurances your prospective contractor must have are workers compensation insurance and general liability insurance. A good rule of thumb is to make sure the contractor has $1,000,000 in General Liability Insurance and $1,000,000 in Workers Compensation Insurance. Without these insurances you, the homeowner is at risk if a worker is injured on site or if a hammer goes through a $20,000 focal window. Make sure the deck contractor you hire is INSURED!

There is no worse feeling than having a hired a contractor, signed the contract, and on the first day of construction wonder do these guys really know what they are doing? It is very important to perform the required research to make sure your deck builder is qualified. There are many resources available to help in the search for a qualified deck contractor. Angie’s List, Home Advisor, and a plethora of other websites will facilitate your hiring search. These websites will direct you to a qualified professional, help set up the estimate, and provide feedback from former customers. Do not stop there, you should always check with the Better Business Bureau to validate the deck builder’s rating, and confirm the business does not have a poor track record. If you are in the market for a composite deck most elite deck builders will be paired with a major deck board manufacturer. Trex Decking partners with decking contractors through its Trex Pro Program. The most prestigious builders will have the Trex Pro Platinum rating. Trex Pro Platinum’s have the most experience with the full line of Trex products. The more qualifications your prospective builder has the better.

It proceeds them, so you better make sure they have a good one, reputation that is. Sometimes word of mouth can be the number one factor in deciding which contractor you decide to hire. Did Aunt Sally just get the most awesome deck built and she is recommending her builder? These recommendations can be the god’s honest truth in finding a qualified builder. A good contractor will go out of their way to make sure your project is completed to  your specifications and requests. They ultimately want you to be their best marketer by informing you friends and family about their services. The only way to maintain this cycle is by maintaining an honest reputation for quality work.

Hiring a decking contractor can seem like a daunting task. However, if you perform your due diligence in hiring a contractor you can lower the possibilities of getting a poorly executed project. Researching for licensing, insurance, qualifications, and reputation are few of the ways to help mitigate the uncertainties in hiring a decking contractor.