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the Inspired by CAI National F


inding a contractor who will perform quality work at a reasonable price can be a daunting task. At times, you may feel like Bob Barker or Drew Carey on “The Price is Right;” urging your vendors to “come on down” and guess the price that your association is willing to pay for a project. However, if you don’t follow a few simple guidelines, you could end up watching your project’s total cost go up and up, just like the yodeling hiker going up the mountain in the Cliff Hangers game featured on that TV game show. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when going out to bid to get the most “bang for your buck” and avoid being taken advantage of or manipulated by the razzle-dazzle of sales pitches.


One of the most important tools in selecting a contractor is to utilize a comparison chart. Provide the most detailed specifications that you need or want in the project, and request all bids received include those specifications, and the respective costs and time frame needed to complete the project. If you can compare apples to apples, it is much easier to play the “Bargain Game” and make an informed decision.


It’s always a good idea to ask for and check references. Sometimes the best feedback on a vendor comes from those who have used the services of that vendor. However, keep in mind that a vendor is likely not going to provide you with the contact information of a past customer who had a negative experience with the vendor. Another suggestion would be to


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