Questions to Ask a Pole Barn Contractor Before Signing a Contract
It used to be the case that pole barns were only used for agricultural purposes. Today, all that has changed and it’s possible to find pole barn garages, shops, and even houses.
Although it’s true that pole barns go up faster than traditional, stick-framed buildings since they tend to require less labour, property owners should still be fastidious about researching contractors. People who want to build pole barns can find a list of questions to ask Brainerd Pole Barn Contractors during their initial consultations to make sure the company will be a good fit.
How Much Experience Does the Crew Have?
Most property owners realize how important it is to choose an experienced contractor, but few realize that even if a company has been around for decades, that says little about how much experience the crew working on the building might have. The construction industry is known for its high turnover rates, so ask specifically about how experienced the crew members, and especially the foreman, are with pole barn construction. It’s also important that these contractors’ experience be specific to post-frame construction since building pole barns requires different skills than constructing conventional stick-framed houses.
Is the Construction Supervisor Licensed and Insured?
While the average construction worker doesn’t need to carry a license or any certifications, the foreman or construction supervisor should be licensed, and the entire crew should be covered by the company’s insurance policy. The company should provide protections for workers in the form of workers’ comp insurance, but it shouldn’t stop there. There should also be a comprehensive liability policy in place that will pay for any repairs in the unlikely event that something goes wrong and the landowner’s property is damaged.
Who Will Be Acting as a Liaison?
In some cases, clients can contact construction supervisors directly with questions. In others, they must contact the office to ask about progress, change orders, and potential issues. Find out what the company’s policy is on client communications and make sure it’s reasonable. If it’s already difficult to reach anyone at the company before the project begins, just think how frustrating that will be if something needs to be changed halfway through.
What Types of Materials Will Be Used?
A pole barn is only as good as the materials it’s made from, so don’t be afraid to ask about them. Pole barn builders that have been in business for a while usually have a range of options to fit different budgets and design requirements, but it’s not just about the types of materials available. It’s also about their quality and appropriateness for this construction type.
To offer an example, posts can be made from either solid timbers or multi-ply engineered laminate columns, and both of those are good options. Solid timbers tend to cost more because they offer greater aesthetic appeal, but both of these materials are suitable for use as posts in pole barns.
Don’t Make a Hasty Decision
A reputable pole barn contractor will never pressure clients to rush into a contract. If it feels like the whole process is being rushed or there are things that are going unsaid, look elsewhere for help. Brainerd area landowners will find that there are professional, reliable, respectful contractors in the area that can complete their projects instead.