Many home repairs and home remodeling projects require the services of a truly skilled carpenter. From refacing an existing set of kitchen cabinets prior to selling and staging a home to framing an entire room extension, everything will run more smoothly and have a better outcome if you hire the right man (or woman) to do the woodworking.
Most home remodeling experts advise that the guiding rule of thumb for basic carpentry projects is to make price a major consideration when selecting a carpenter. Installing pre made cabinets or fixing a dilapidated old stair rail are jobs that most carpenters can do with ease, so there may be little difference in terms of skill level from one carpenter to another.
This is not to say that you should hire the teenager from down the street who took a few woodshop lessons last year and is feeling adventurous (and short of money). You still need to ensure that the carpenter you hire is legitimate and experienced.
If you are the kind of person that likes to see an official piece of paper , many carpenters in the Waterloo Region belong to The Ontario College of Trades, whose stated mission is to “protect the public by regulating and promoting the skilled trades.” The OCOT enforces certain training and professional standards, investigates complaints made against members, and can levy charges, tickets, and other penalties if public-reported offenses are proven legitimate. However, there is really no substitute for experience and reliability. Ask for references and check them out, as well as looking at samples of the carpenter’s work if at all possible.
For more advanced carpentry jobs, you really need to do a lot more homework. You are likely to be charged up to 40% more for a carpenter to undertake custom cabinetry or fine furniture reproduction so you need to ensure that the carpenter you choose has the stuff to get the job done in an exemplary fashion.
When your remodeling project calls for specialist carpentry like this consider utilizing the services of a referral company. These companies spend a lot of time and effort vetting the companies and contractors that they recommend to their clients, relieving them of a lot of the “legwork” involved in choosing the right carpenter for their particular remodeling project.
Once you have your list of recommended carpenters from the referral company request a personal interview with each one of them. Having a good rapport with the carpenter you choose to work on your project makes all the difference in the world, and the only way one can really determine if such a rapport will exist is to meet face to face.
Any reliable carpenter should be willing to offer you references, but actually take the time to verify them for yourself. A simple phone call should suffice, but if you can find someone willing to show you the results of the carpenter’s labor on their remodeling job that is an opportunity that should not be passed up. After all there is nothing quite like proof that your own eyes can see.