How to Be Sure You Hire the Right Commercial Demolition Contractor

excavator tearing down commercial structure

Updated May 25, 2023

Commercial demolition is complex in most cases and finding the right contractor to handle a commercial demolition project can feel just as challenging as the work itself in some cases.

The key to finding the right contractor for your commercial demolition job is doing your due diligence and getting multiple quotes from local contractors.

Know what to expect and how to cover all your bases to ensure you choose the right contractor for your commercial demolition project with our quick guide.

Table of Contents:

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Understand Your Project First

When explaining your commercial demolition project to contractors, you'll want to be as specific as possible. So, before reaching out to contractors, we recommend making sure you know what work you need done and have as much information on-hand as you can.

The more information you have regarding your interior or structural commercial demolition project, the more accurate your demolition estimate will be, and an accurate estimate is always the goal. What's the point of an inaccurate estimate after all?

When reaching out to commercial demolition contractors near you, be prepared to answer the following questions:

  • What type of commercial demolition project is this: interior or structural?
  • How complex is the demolition? How big is the job?
  • To the best of your knowledge, what will be involved in the work? Are there any hazardous materials? Will electrical and/or plumbing need to be relocated?
  • Where is the work located? Is it easy to access with heavy equipment?

When you do reach out to contractors for a quote, be sure to include as much information as you have. The more forthright you are, the faster they'll be able to provide an accurate estimate for your commercial demolition project.

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Read Customer Reviews

One of the most valuable considerations to take into account when looking for a commercial demolition contractor is what a contractor's previous customers have to say about their experience with them.

You may know someone who has hired a commercial demolition contractor in the past, so asking around is helpful, but Hometown makes it beyond easy to see what companies offer commercial demolition in your area, read customer reviews, and request free quotes.

Real customer reviews—or getting a recommendation from someone you trust—are invaluable during the contractor hiring process.

Read more: What to Look for in Demolition Reviews Before Hiring

Know Licensing Requirements in Your Area

commercial demolition in progress

In most cases, general contractors and most subcontractors will need to be licensed before performing any demolition or construction work, including commercial demolition.

However, the requirements and protocols vary by state and municipality, so do your research on local contractor licensing laws.

The contractors you speak with should be aware of local licensing laws and be up to code, but check with your local department to confirm with them that is the case.

Don't be afraid to ask the contractor for a copy of their license if it isn't clearly visible. For a licensed contractor, providing proof of their licensing is no problem, so if they don't make it readily available or refuse to provide proof to you, be wary of hiring that contractor.

Get Multiple Contractor Quotes

We recommend speaking with a minimum of three contractors before deciding who you should hire. Hometown makes it easy to request and compare quotes!

Getting multiple quotes will allow you to adequately compare bids and make sure you're choosing the best contractor for the right price.

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Get a Detailed Contract in Writing

Make sure your contract details exactly what work will be done, including payment plans, deadlines, what materials or equipment will be used to get the work done, etc.

If something isn't documented, it's their word against yours, so that's why you should get as many details as possible in writing.

Any changes to the project should be accompanied by a written change order including all new information, like cost, labor, materials, etc.

Determine a Payment Schedule Before Signing

Be wary of any contractor who demands more than 50% of payment upfront. 

You don’t want a contractor to use your money to finish someone else’s project, and this happens more often than it should. To avoid this, we recommend paying no more than 50% upfront, and then paying as the work is completed.

The contract should clearly spell out the payment schedule and when progress payments will be made.

Because commercial demolition projects are often completed relatively quickly, an example of a payment schedule might be paying 1/2 of the total cost upfront then the final 1/2 when the work is completed.

Keep reading: Why You Should Never Pay Your Contractor Upfront

Be Sure Permit Procedures Will Be Followed

Nearly all home renovation projects require permits before work begins.

This isn't always the case for simple commercial demolition, but you should confirm this with your contractor and local building department.

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Choose the Right Contractor for Your Project

We always recommend finding a company that regularly performs the work you're asking them to do.

Hometown makes it beyond easy to see local commercial demolition companies servicing your area, read customer reviews, get answers to common commercial demolition questions, and request quotes from multiple contractors with the click of a button.

As previously mentioned, read customer reviews carefully to make sure the contractor you're looking into is the right fit for you and your project.

Keep in mind that good customer reviews are just one of the criteria the contractor you hire should meet.

Keep in mind that the best contractors are usually busy, so don't be dismayed if the contractor you want to hire can't start right away. This is also why it's best to call well in advance of your desired start date for the project.

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Check in with the Contractor Regularly

If possible, keep an eye on the project's progress as much as you can, and talk with your contractor periodically to check in on the progress.

If you are confused about something, see an issue, or have any questions about the work being done, do not hesitate to speak up.

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