What to Look For When Hiring a Subcontractor

October 22, 2014

Hiring a subcontractor is a big deal. The right ones on your job can make it go very smoothly and save you time and money. The wrong ones can lead to chaos and wind up costing you big time!

While it is impossible to judge subcontractors completely until you’ve seen them on the job, it’s good to have a few ideas of what to look for in these important workers.

Consider these tips for finding the right subcontractors:

Use Your Network

Work with people you know or with those who know people you know. This can assure that your subcontractor is just as invested in the results of the project as you are.

Ask for References

Most subcontractors are more than happy to provide references or work samples. This can give you a better idea of what to expect once the job has begun.

Don’t Grasp at Straws

Hire someone who is perfectly qualified for the job—not someone who may be able to figure it out. Your project is important and as such you deserve to have the very best subcontractors on the job.

Choose Quality Over Price

While you want to get the job done as cheaply as possible, don’t hire someone based solely on price. You will likely regret this decision and wind up paying more in the end. Choose a subcontractor who knows his value and isn’t afraid to charge it.

Find Someone Who Doesn’t Mind Direction

Ultimately, the results of this project fall on your shoulders. That means it makes sense to work with a subcontractor who does not mind letting you put in your opinions on his or her work.

Remember that Personality Matters

You will be working with this person over the course of the project. As such, it is important that you choose someone who has a personality that doesn’t clash with yours or your other subcontractors. A friendly, laid-back employee is going to lead to a smoother result.


You want someone you can trust. If you don’t trust him or her, keep looking.

Remember, these tips are only the beginning. The most important thing is to follow your own intuition. It will seldom steer you wrong. Additionally, make sure you have a back up plan in place—just in case! By doing this, you will prevent a poor choice from putting the brakes on your major project.