If you are considering any sort of home improvement, be smart about how you proceed. Before hiring someone to help you repair, remodel or replace any part of your house or condominium, your first step should be to see if the contractor is currently licensed with a Home Improvement license. The Maryland Home Improvement Commission (MHIC) regulates home improvement contractors and salespeople.
It is a criminal offense to be paid to do home improvements without a license. You, the home owner, are not protected under the Guaranty Fund if you chose to work with unlicensed contractors. The Guaranty Fund was set up by the MHIC and is supported by licensed contractors who pay each time they renew their license. The fund compensates homeowners for monetary losses due to poor workmanship. The fund will not compensate for money lost from unlicensed contractors.
If you are looking to save a buck and hire an unlicensed handy person, you are putting yourself at risk for a number of financial and safety hardships. Home improvement scams run rampant, all over the country, make sure you are not one of the many. Check with the State of Maryland’s Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation for MD Active Licensees or call 1-888-218-5925, to see if your contractor is licensed. You can also find out of there have been complaints filed against a contractor and if they are resolved or still open.
When choosing someone to help you with your home improvement remember to:
- Check if they have an active License with the Home Improvement Commission
- Ask for references from previous customers they have worked with – call those references
- Get a copy of the contractors current liability insurance
- Get a written contract
- Only pay 1/3 of the contract price as a down payment
- Find out what sorts of county permits are required prior to starting work
And, one last thing….Capital Fences’ MHIC number is 50609. You are safe with us!