Don’t licensed contractors cost more?
I could save a lot of money, or, get a whole lot more done if I just use a skilled worker.
Why should I use a licensed contractor?
There are many reasons why one is better off using a licensed contractor. Yes. licensed contractors cost more. However, if the bottom line is the most important item on the list to you, please read on and consider the following information before making the final decision. This article is all about the bottom line when you consider some of the “what if’s” that could go wrong on a construction project, particularly, in the legal aspects of things.
Disclaimer: I am NOT an Attorney. Do NOT consider this legal advise. Contact your attorney for legal advice.
The bottom line is…. when you hire anyone to work on/at your home, or, other property you own, licensed, or, not, ultimately, you are the “employer”. There are many laws that you as the owner and, employer, are required to follow.
For example, did you know that, as the ultimate employer, you are responsible for ensuring that all laws pertaining to your project are to be followed and adhered to? Yes, that’s right! Any law imposed by the federal government, state government, local, county and town governments, all the way down to any neighborhood associations, including domestic water system associations and the like.
You are responsible for laws pertaining to things such as permits, building codes, local ordinances, the ADA, anti-discrimination laws, employment laws, tax laws and more.
You are even responsible for withholding taxes from the employees checks, and making sure those funds get to the federal and state governments, even if they are employed by someone else.
What? How and why would you be responsible for such things when you have no idea what the details of anything to do with any of these things are?
In my opinion, this is the #1 reason to hire a licensed contractor. Having a signed contract with a licensed contractor cover’s your backside on this one. The law allows you to delegate those responsibilities to someone else who is qualified to handle these types of issues.
The licensed contractor is, technically, the educated one, in all of these issues, in the construction industry. Theoretically, the contractor should already have a payroll system in place. In fact, the contractor is required, and should be acutely aware of the details of all these laws, and more.
Now, finding a proper qualified and competent licensed contractor is a whole other story. However, I believe I know one. Ask me for a recommendation!
Being a licensed contractor, and educated on most, if not all of these subjects, I can tell you that I have not directly gone through a situation where someone was drug through the courts for not complying with all these laws. However, I know there are folks that have gone through it. I know that I do not want to go through it. I can’t image the mess and the stress, not to mention the cost of experiencing this type of problem. And then, what if you lose? You are now responsible for the legal fees of the prevailing party!
All it takes is one disgruntled person in the situation to cause all sorts of unwanted and costly problems. Depending on who that disgruntled person speaks to, any number of government agencies can come down on you like a ton of bricks. If they do, it is surely going to cost somebody a whole lot more than they bargained for!
There are many other reasons to hire a licensed contractor. I won’t go into any of them here and now.
Bottom line, use a licensed contractor, but, be sure that contractor is aware of and, on top of, all the issues they need to be on top of!