Source: Jefferson County District Attorney
Construction problems occur frequently in Colorado. Do your homework before entering into a contract with any company.
Call the homeowners who had work performed by the contractor you are considering hiring. Was the job done professionally? Was the job finished on time and on budget? Would the homeowner use the company again?
Look at the Job
Does the work satisfy your demands and needs? Do you plan on having the same amount of work performed? If the work you are seeing is a small job and your job is larger in scope, you may want to ask the contractor for a referral for a larger project she/he has performed? If so, find out if this would be the contractor's first attempt at a job of this size.
Find Out How Much of the Job was Subcontracted
Determine who will subcontract the job and check references. Does the contractor always work with the same subcontractors or does he hire any available subcontractor? Will you have any say in who will be hired?
Get At Least Three Bids for Your Proposal
Make certain the entire arrangement is in writing. Remember, you cannot prove a verbal conversation or agreement took place.
Determine if the Contractor Needs to Pull Permits
Make certain the permit is pulled and on site before allowing work to begin and before paying huge sums of money.
Write a Detailed Contract
This should include dates, materials, change orders, inspections and payment schedules. Again, remember that you cannot prove a verbal conversation took place.
Pay as You Go
Make certain the payment schedule is in writing. You may consider paying only after inspections take place and all corrections have been performed. Obtain lien waivers as you pay each installment.
Request Frequent Bills
Ask to see invoices for materials before paying the bill.
Make Check Payable Jointly
Consider making the check payable jointly to the contractor and supplier/subcontractor. This will guarantee the supplier or subcontractor are paid.
Inspect the Work Frequently
Make certain all city/county inspections are done on time.
Request Corrections as the Job Progresses
Don't wait until the job has been completed. It is difficult to level the floor after the flooring has been installed, and it is difficult to move the outlet to the specified location after the job has been plastered and painted.
Partial performance is generally considered a civil problem and civil remedies are available. The District Attorney's Office can only become involved in partial performance complaints when there is a provable pattern of partial performance resulting in a monetary benefit for the contractor. Please remember that damages are not considered partial performance, and damages can only be awarded through the courts.