Q. We’re upset with our contractor, who is taking over three weeks to get his plumber and electrician to give him their information so we can apply for permits, and we’re ready to give up and find somebody else. If the contractor can’t even get some names and license numbers, how can we expect him to be able to run the job? Are we being unreasonable, or does it have to take this long to get license and insurance information? We think they’re stalling us. What do you think?
A. While you aren’t being unreasonable, this is a typical scenario, unfortunately. I see it every day of the week. I don’t fault the contractor for the delay unless he, too, doesn’t get the importance of getting correct information in a timely manner. It’s rare for me to receive correct or complete insurance information, license number, telephone numbers, and addresses the first time from plumbers and electricians. I’ll never understand how the same people who qualified for plumbing and electrical licenses — people who are pretty talented and smart, experts in their trade — can’t seem to just have a sheet ready with their name, their license numbers in various jurisdictions, their phone number and address. It’s as if each time is the first time they were ever asked for this information, yet every building department requires it on every job.