Paying The Contractor: What's "Normal" ?

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wrote:

Suppliers here look for 25% with the order, and the balance before delivery -- from homeowners.

Depends on how small he is -- he may be happy to have you pay his supplier direct for the materials and have you pay for the install after it's done.
Some jurisdictions require contractors to be bonded before they can take money up front ... check with your city hall.
In your place, I'd look for 2 reputable siding and window suppliers or manufacturer who do residential installs.

The only thought is to talk with several people ... and check out the one you choose very carefully
Ken
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I have been renovating my home this last year and have acted as my own contractor. I buy the materials and have hired a "bonded" and "insured" workman for a specified rate. We have both been very pleased with this arrangement. I pay on a daily basis and should I become unhappy with his performance I can end the arrangement. He on the other hand has no material costs up front.
It takes some time to supervise this activity but since I'm retired it works.
Robert11 wrote:

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In my state by law a contractor may ask for up to 1/3 of the contracted price in advance. Perhaps you have similar laws or regulations in your area. Licensed contractor are required to be bonded for different amounts depending on what their license is for.
--
A man who throws dirt loses ground.

Larry Wasserman - Baltimore Maryland - snipped-for-privacy@charm.net
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I work for a contractor supply company. The majority of our business is on credit to contractors. (more than 70%). We also have retail locations and a truss manufacturing facility that fill the majority of the remaining 30% of our revenue.
Contractors are able to get credit to do projects if they're reputable. Their suppliers also rather that they "run a tab" for all materials on a project so we can send them a bill for that project at the end.
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You're missing the point. The supplier credit is there for the benefit of the contractor. It's up to the contractor to decide how the financial dealings between themselves and the owner are arranged. If a contractor has stuff out on credit he's exposed. That exposure needs to be covered - the sooner, the better. That's good business.
R
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Robert11 wrote:

The best experiences I've had with contractors have have entailed not much more than a detailed conversation, firm agreement on a price (in writing or not), a handshake and full payment made in cash when the job is finished. These have all been under $7000. This included the new windows I had done 5 years ago. There was a written contract in that case, but I payed nothing until the job was 100% complete. I've had nothing but grief from the large outfits with big display ads, guys in uniforms and tons of paperwork with detailed payment schemes. Over the summer I hired a contractor for a job closer to 10,000 and he wanted half up front and the rest at completion. I was a bit nervous about the front until the trucks and dozers and obviously hard working crew showed up when they said they would. It all worked out good in the end. He had come highly recommended but beyond that you have to go with your gut as well and extend a bit of trust.
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