For questions relating to the subject of general contractors for home construction, including soliciting or making bids, working with or under a general contractor, handling payment, and warranty considerations.

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Water leak from shower

I have a 2 handle shower. There is no water leak if I run the hot water alone. No leak when I run cold water alone. When I open both hot and cold water together, there is a water leak. Any thoughts? ...
4
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3answers
108 views

Contractor not using thin set between sub floor and cement board

So, I've made a big stink with the flooring guys about how they have installed the Hardiebacker cement board for our tile. They skipped putting down the thin set under the cement board even though ...
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1answer
28 views

My contractor replaced old soffits and fascia with fiber cement panels. What type of molding/cleating should be used?

My contractor installed a narrow piece of wood molding in the corner where the soffit panels meet the wall of the house. See the diagram below. The material used for the yellow piece is ...
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1answer
43 views

HVAC Contractor Didn't Install Drip Pan

I recently got the A/C unit and furnace in my basement replaced. When the company came out to do the quote, they stated that they thought I should have a drip pan, and the proposal that they gave me ...
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2answers
36 views

Replacing fascia board: what kind of contractor?

I was cleaning my gutters yesterday and I noted that the fascia board is coming apart. I don't have the time or skills to do it myself. What kind of contractor would be best to hire? The ones I can ...
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1answer
47 views

How can I estimate costs for a renovation project?

This is a general question about estimating costs that a contractor might charge for a job. I have a large renovation project that I am considering. This project is clearly beyond my abilities. ...
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2answers
96 views

Do asphalt contractors throw away unused sealant at end of season?

Background I just had a guy knock on my door to pitch me a quote to reseal my driveway. I need to get it resealed, so I listed to his pitch. He said he wouldn't charge me for materials because he is ...
6
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5answers
2k views

Should it take a while to get supplies to rewire a 1100sq ft house?

I'm dealing with some contractor problems and I'm trying to get some information to figure out if the contractor is lying to me or just incompetent (or if I'm unreasonable). We had a long delay of no ...
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1answer
38 views

Small caulk holes around new windows

I'm trying to determine how strict to be when reviewing a contractors work. We had new windows installed, which involved caulking around the outside, between the vinyl window and the new wood siding. ...
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3answers
75 views

Importance of plaster repair skills/experience

I have an old 1920's house in the Chicago area with many lath-and-plaster walls and ceilings. We are going to be removing a whole-house fan, which will leave a 3' square opening that will need to be ...
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1answer
49 views

Galvanized Gutters Required For Dormer With Rubber Roof?

I have a long dormer and currently there is no gutter, water just runs off and is starting to seep into my basement. I got an estimate to install gutters on the dormer and the contractor said that ...
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1answer
94 views

Does a contract to build a deck need an occupancy clause?

I am replacing an exterior deck. I've had several contractors out to give quotes, accepted an estimate from one, and am now in the position of signing (or not) a contract for the work. It's a lump sum ...
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2answers
129 views

Can an electrician run wiring to convert battery powered smoke alarms to wired alarms?

I recently purchased a 2001 built condominium unit with original battery powered smoke and CO2 alarms. Since I have to replace all the alarms at this point anyway, I'm curious how invasive a procedure ...
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3answers
195 views

What kind of repair do I need for water damage from second floor?

Last night, my second floor shower wouldn't turn off because the handle cartridge broke and water leaked from the shower handle opening to behind the shower walls and all the way down to the garage. ...
4
votes
2answers
250 views

Who do I hire to design my home HVAC system?

Preface I need to buy a new HVAC system for my 1930s home. I currently have forced air duct system. My gas furnace was installed in 1985 and is rusting out, and I'm not sure about the air ...
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0answers
155 views

Is it common for a contractor to ask a 50% deposit prior to starting the job?

It's the first time i'm dealing with this kind of thing, so it's probably a basic question, but I would still like to double check. I found a contractor for a job in the house, but he's booked for ...
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2answers
39 views

Which type of termite control is the most efficient in term of price in my case

Which type of termite control is the most efficient in term of price in my case? All the wood flooring and pillar had termite colony in my case...
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4answers
1k views

How do I look up a contractor's license status in Pennsylvania?

I've seen this question but it's a few years old and isn't specific to a state. I am past the inspection stage on a potential new house and the seller wants to use a certain plumber to do some ...
4
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3answers
11k views

Microwave not heating: Should I pay a contractor to diagnose?

My microwave is turning on, but it's no longer heating food. It just runs until the timer finishes, but the food is not being heated. I read a few articles online that say microwaves aren't easy for ...
1
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1answer
120 views

Are licensed electricians required to perform code-compliant repairs?

A California licensed electrician replaced a circuit breaker for a friend. He removed the living room AFCI breaker and replaced it with a used non-AFCI breaker. When I heard this I was upset enough ...
3
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3answers
3k views

Possible to refinish hardwood floor without messing with quarter-round baseboard?

I am evaluating a quote to refinish my hardwood floors and stairs. The contractor mentioned that they would not be removing the quarter-round below the base board and it would require touch up after ...
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1answer
70 views

Replacing window

I am replacing a window in a garage. I measured the rough openings but the current window in the garage is quite old and I am not even sure what kind of window it is (or the proper terminology for ...
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1answer
146 views

Contractor vented bathroom vents in attic, now I have mold. Is he accountable? [closed]

A few years ago I bought a home. The inspector found mold in the attic and pointed out that the upstairs bathrooms did not have vents. I remediated the mold and had an electrician install vents that ...
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2answers
76 views

How to choose from options from house painting company?

I recently had someone from a painting company visit my house to give an estimate. He gave me three options: (1) the cheapest paint, six year warranty, $3000 (2) a thicker paint, nine year ...
5
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2answers
125 views

What do you do with a company who did a bad install who will not come out to inspect the job or return your calls? [closed]

I am hoping this doesn't fall into off-topic territory. If it does, I'll just have to find another website to ask it on. I am the president of an HOA and one of our unit owners is experiencing water ...
2
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0answers
50 views

What's the difference between SFA99 and RIBA Agreements 2010 in the UK?

I am starting the process of having an extension on my house, and getting close to signing an agreement with an architect to have drawings done. The architect would like to use SFA99 as the contract ...
5
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1answer
1k views

What kind of contractor would I need to service or replace pull down attic stairs?

I have attic loft with pull down stairs access to it and I need it either serviced or replaced with a new rope system. Can you advice what kind of contractor I'd need for this? As you can see on the ...
3
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1answer
258 views

What information do I need to give a general contractor to get a good quote?

I'm looking to do some major renovations: removing an interior wall removing popcorn ceilings new kitchen (layout, appliances, counters, cabinets, etc) new master bath new flooring throughout new ...
6
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2answers
19k views

How can I get low water pressure in sprinkler system fixed?

I have a new house that is still under warranty. Compared to at least two of my neighbors whose houses were built by the same builder and have very similar sprinkler systems, my sprinklers put out ...
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1answer
16k views

How much is a good estimate for a pro to add a railing to stairs? [closed]

Earlier I asked a question about how to add a railing to one side of a stairway: How should I add a rail on a carpeted stairway that's open on one side? One of the comments mentioned that I ...
7
votes
3answers
143 views

How can I determine if a contractor has a valid license?

Is there a website that you can check to see if a contractor is licensed and is valid? Is it a state by state thing, or is their a national database as well?
3
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1answer
135 views

It is reasonable to expect a contractor to replace the last foot of HVAC duct work, the connection between the insulated duct and the register?

The contract was to replace an antiquated HVAC and duct work. Since the registers are a standard size, would this connection also be a standard pre-fabricated part? What is that last connection ...
2
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3answers
4k views

Where should I look to rent time on a router table?

I have a woodworking project which requires a CNC router table. It would need a decent sized table for the 36" x 28" panels. Somebody that spends thousands of dollars on one of these machines must ...
4
votes
2answers
116 views

DIYer to skilled tradesperson

What is the process a DIYer has to go through to become a skilled tradesperson? Are the only options apprenticeships, or are there other paths to follow to learn a trade/become licensed? What type ...
7
votes
1answer
213 views

How to effectively fire a contractor and avoid liens or other legal issues

There may come a time despite all the research, when you realize the contractor you hired just isn't up to snuff. what is the best way to fire them and avoid liens or legal battles? Is this something ...
4
votes
3answers
675 views

Kind of contractor to hire to install new basement window, where there was none before?

A family member is interested in getting their basement finished, and one of the things they'd like to do is have an additional bedroom in the basement. The bedroom should have a window. However, ...
4
votes
1answer
459 views

Gluing Hardwood Floors?

We recently had our house built, and included the "hardwood floors" upgrade. When we moved it we were pleased with the way the floors looked. Some time later, water started coming up from beneath the ...
13
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15answers
1k views

What do you do/ask when hiring a contractor

In a world where every guy with a truck full of tools is a "contractor", how do you weed out the good from the bad?