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A Senior's Guide to Hiring a Contractor

Before You Hire a Contractor

  • Read the Homeowner’s Bill of Rights, available here, or obtain a copy by calling
    (775) 688-1141 or (702) 486-1100.
  • Take your time before you make a decision about hiring a contractor.
  • Get at least three bids
  • Check references
  • Hire licensed contractors.
  • Get the contractor’s license number and verify it online at www.nscb.state.nv.us or by calling (775) 688-1141 or (702) 486-1100.

Things to Know About the Contract

  • Get your contract in writing and don’t sign anything until you understand the terms.
  • You may want a friend, relative or legal counsel to review the contract before you sign it.
  • Include in your contract specific description of work to be done, materials to be used, total cost of the project, and start and completion dates.

The Warning Signs of Unscrupulous Contractor Scams. . .

  • Door-to-Door Solicitations
    Someone comes to your door offering to fix your roof, re-tile your floor or re-landscape your yard for a reduced price. Once payment is made, little or no work is done and the project is abandoned.
  • Verbal Agreements
    A contractor says that a written contract is unnecessary and promises to do the job with a verbal agreement. He or she takes advantage of the situation to perform shoddy work or no work at all.
  • High Pressure Sales
    An unscrupulous contractor pushes for an immediate decision about work, which makes it impossible for you to get competitive bids, check his license or review references.
  • Demand for Cash
    A contractor demands cash payments, or offers to drive you to the bank to withdraw funds. With money in hand, he or she takes the money and runs.
  • Scare Tactics
    A deceitful contractor offers to perform a free inspection, then claims that bad wiring, bad plumbing or a leaky roof put you in peril. He or she pressures you to agree to over-priced work.
  • Large Down Payments
    A dishonest contractor demands a large down payment to cover supplies and pay workers. On most types of contracts, there is no set amount for a down payment. However, it is a good rule of thumb not to let the payments get ahead of the work.

Things You Should Know About

  • Don’t pay cash.
  • Include a payment schedule in your written contract.
  • Don’t let the payments get ahead of the work.
  • If you have questions, call the Nevada State Contractors Board.
  • Pay by check.
  • Obtain receipts for payments

Don’t be a Victim of Unscrupulous or Unlicensed Contractors!

Get free information from the Nevada State Contractors Board before you:

  • Hire a Contractor
  • Sign a Contract
  • Pay for Work and Repairs