5 Ways to Tell Your Deck Contractor is the Best

decks and porch contractor

5 Ways to Tell Your Deck Contractor is the Best

Thinking of adding a deck or porch to your home? A deck or porch enhances both the appearance and value of your home, but it is also an undertaking which can cost a very sizable amount. Hiring the right professional deck or porch contractor will ensure that your project is built reliably so it'll hold up for years. Determining which contractor to hire can be a daunting task, so here's what to consider during your search.

In Person Interviews and References

Always interview potential contractors in person. Online reviews and recommendations from friends are useful, but they should not replace a face-to-face interview. Use online reviews and recommendations from friends to narrow down the list of available contractors to two or three to interview. Ideally, you should interview three contractors, but interviewing at least two gives you the opportunity to compare them. During your conversation, you should ask each contractor for their portfolio of completed projects and the contact information of the people the work was completed for. Reputable porch and deck contractors will be eager to provide you with this information. Be sure to follow through by speaking with several references, and don't hesitate to contact the contractor if any questions or issues arise.


Before hiring a contractor, be sure they carry insurance and have the licenses required to work on your project. Deck and porch contractors typically carry $1 million or more in liability insurance that covers general accidents, but you ought to inquire just in case. Make sure the contractor has all of the licenses required to complete your project. A contractor may be licensed to do all of the framing, for example, but may not be licensed to complete any electrical work that may be involved.


Warranties can be used to judge the quality of porch and deck contractors. Look for contractors who will at the very least match the warranties connected to the materials employed in the project, and truly great contractors will not hesitate to offer a lifetime warranty on their workmanship. Avoid contractors who offer short, 1- to 3- year warranties on their workmanship. Be sure you understand what is and isn't covered by the warranty.

Warning Signs

Although most professional porch and deck contractors require an initial payment before beginning work, be wary of any contractor who requests more than 30% of the total cost up front. High quality deck and porch contractors charge $75 an hour or more, though there are good quality contractors who work for approximately $40 an hour. Be concerned if a contractor offers to complete the project for significantly less time or money than other contractors. A reputable contractor will base their estimate on observations and careful measurements made at your home. Be wary of contractors who offer a quick quote based solely on rough dimensions or an estimated completion time.

Communicate on Everything

Once you've hired a contractor, make sure you are in agreement about how the project will proceed, including where materials will be stored, and what, if any, access workers will have to the inside of your home. Also be sure you and the contractor have discussed who will be responsible for obtaining any permits needed and what the timeline for the project will be. Home owners who are careful when hiring a professional porch or deck contractors can sit back and relax while the building commences, confident that their project will go smoothly.

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