Podcast Episode 112 — How to Hire a Contractor
Primers, sealers, paints, sprayers, and rollers; soapstone and concrete countertops; greenwashing and the true costs of net-zero homes; and woodworking and rocking chairs.
Our regular podcasters, Justin, Rob, and Brian, start the episode by catching up on their own recent projects. Rob is priming and painting drywall; he explains why he used an 18-in. roller, not a sprayer. Justin has been doing some woodworking — two Craftsman-style rocking chairs.
Listener Jeff recalls Episode 28 and asks, “Do you have any tips on finding the right contractor to do work on your house? It feels like a leap of faith sometimes. I guess it’s a trust issue, based on past experience.” Justin suggests, “Become versed in the general area that you are hiring someone for.” Brian says that a contractor’s quote does not tell you about the quality of the contractor’s technique, so ask some leading questions about method and practice. Rob talks about getting references and opinions from people you trust.
Listener Mike is interested in soapstone countertops — and whether concrete is better. The guys talk about working with soapstone.
Listener Tim opens up a can of worms by asking about the truth behind the greenwashing of net-zero projects that do not take into account the true energy costs. Plus recycling PV panels makes them a less than environmental. That’s all about the embodied energy of building materials, for example. Check out the links below for more.
This episode of the podcast is brought to you by Benjamin Moore.
Everyone can paint. This is true. But not everyone can get the project done right. And Benjamin Moore knows that’s why you’re on the job. You’re more than a paintbrush and a ladder. Your client can buy those things at a hardware store, but they hired you for your skills and expertise. You know every paint job is different and that it takes more than one coat for the best finish. Benjamin Moore believes in doing things the right way. Because everyone can paint, but to do it right, it takes an expert contractor, it takes more than one coat, and it takes Benjamin Moore. Paint like no other.
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The Fine Homebuilding Podcast embodies Fine Homebuilding magazine’s commitment to the preservation of craftsmanship and the advancement of home performance in residential construction. The show is an informal but vigorous conversation about the techniques and principles that allow listeners to master their design and building challenges.
Links related to this episode:
- FWW’s Michael Pekovich recently wrote about Craftsman Rocking Chairs.
- Modern Drywall Hanging Tools, Methods and More.
- The guys talked about pricing and contractors in Episode 61.
- 3 Ways to Price Construction Projects.
- Do-It-Yourself Stone Counters. (by Michael Pekovich)
- A New Approach to Concrete. (by Buddy Rhodes)
- Lightweight Concrete Countertop Video Series. (by Buddy Rhodes)
- Form, Pour, and Finish Concrete for Countertops. (by Fu-tung Chang)
- Concrete Possibilities: A Gallery of Ideas. (by Fu-tung Chang)
- How to Form Small Concrete Projects the Easy Way. (by Chuck Miller)
- William McDonough’s TED talk on Cradle to Cradle Design.
- Cradle to Cradle summary.
- All FHB podcast show notes: FineHomebuilding.com/podcast.
- #KeepCraftAlive tee-shirts support scholarships for building trades students. So go order some shirts at KeepCraftAlive.org.
- The direct link to the online store is here.