Reading Time: 6 minutes

Best Renovation Contractors in Dubai & How to Screen for a Good One

Home Renovation Dubai

These days, finding the best home renovation contractors is literally the hardest part of a home renovation in Dubai.

Having gone through a full home renovation ourselves, we did an extensive amount of research to screen for a good contractor for each job. We spoke to dozens over the phone, met them in person, and visited a handful of sites to see their work and finishing.

After vetting tons of companies over the phone, conducting face-to-face meetings, and personally inspecting several sites to evaluate their workmanship and finishing, we have some solid findings to share. It turns out, putting in the legwork pays off big time.

We hope this guide will better equip you to make smarter choices in every home project you undertake.

Home Renovation Dubai: Our Findings

While some contractors really impressed us with their craftsmanship and dedication to quality, others left us scratching our heads. Here is our overall take from our home renovation journey:

1. Google reviews and pretty Instagram reels are easy ways to find renovation contractors in Dubai, but to decide if they are great contractors really requires another level of digging.

2. There is certainly a WIDE range in completion time, price and finishes.

3. Having their own joinery in their office gave us peace of mind.

4. The more contractors we spoke to, the more we learn about home renovations and became more confident with what to look out for.

5. Renovation contractors may promote their country origin to portray a certain image. Honestly, nationality really doesn’t matter.

Screening contractors takes time, but there are a few things you can do to increase your chances of success. So how do we find them?

For a quick glance, here are a starter list of the best contractors in Dubai.  

Home Renovation Dubai: Best Contractors (Google Reviews 2024)

(Fit-Out, Turn-Key, Home Renovation)

 Remodelling ContractorsGoogle ReviewInstagramDesign ServiceEstablished
1Neo Tech Engineering4.5 (12 Reviews)@neotechuaeYes2005
2Merrit Interiors4.1 (14 Reviews)@merrit_interiorsYes2005
3RosevilleNA@rosevilledubaiNo2008
4Gallagher Technical Services4.2 (5 Reviews)@gallaghertechnicalservicesYes2015
5Across Design5(14 Reviews)@theacrossdesignsYes2017
6Signature Living4 (5 Reviews)@signature_livingYes2015
7MACS5 (3 Reviews)@macsuaeYes2018
8Atelier Five4.4 (14 Reviews)@atelierfiveinteriorsYes2019
9Cherwell Interiors4.9 (22 Reviews)@cherwell_dubaiYes2014
10Creating Homes4.7 (3 Reviews)@creatinghomesYes2009
11Smart Renovation4.9 (34 Reviews)@smartrenovationdubaiYes2013
12One Fitout4.8 (6 Reviews)@onef1toutYes2019
As of January 2024

Note: Contractors may prefer villas projects.

If you have an apartment to renovate, check first if the contractors will do it as they often have more rules and restrictions, i.e. working hours, ventilation, general logistics, neighbours complaints causing delays, etc.

Home Renovation Dubai: 7 Ways to Screen for a Good Contractor in Dubai

What’s the best way to find a contractor in Dubai?

It may be tempting to ask your friends and family, but their one bathroom remodel contractor may not be the best choice for your full house gut renovation.

Before you decide to use someone’s recommendation, here are some ways to begin your own research.

1. Home Renovation Dubai: Visit Sanitary and Tile Shops

Visit home hardware shops such as Bagno Design, RAK, Saniplex, Aquazone, and keep an eye out for contractors. They are frequent visitors to these shops, and can be easily identified by their company logo on their shirt.

Tip: Have a chat with the staff, and try to get a list of contractors these shops do business with. (See Left Image) It was a great way to shortlist potential contractors that may work for you.

2. Home Renovation Dubai: Google Reviews

Nowadays, the first thing we do is Google, and look at Google reviews. This is a great way to discover people’s experience and avoid any mishaps.

Keep in mind though, some reviews can be fake or generic enough that they can be applicable even to a coffee shop review.

Some may also be fake negative review to bring the company down. What it will do, however, is give you direction on what steps to take next.

3. Home Renovation Dubai: Facebook Group

Style Me Interiors is a resourceful UAE community where the group shares their knowledge and experience on all home renovations topics such as interior design, finding the best carpenters, paint brands, and contractors in Dubai.

It’s a great way to get yourself familiar on how people renovate, and run a background check on potential contractors.

4. Home Renovation Dubai: Instagram

In Dubai, there are homeowners who are passionate about sharing their renovation journey on Instagram… They showcase paint comparison, how they design a kitchen, and tag which contractor they worked with.

Often, they are very candid, honest, and really good with their visuals. We reached out to a few who happily shared their experience on their contractors, and it helped us decide if those are the contractors we want on OUR team.

5. Pre-Screen Contractors on Phone & in Person

Our experience with a contractor begins the moment we start talking with them, whether over WhatsApp, phone, or in person. Do they reply promptly? Do they respond well to questions?

Some general questions to ask:

1. How long would it take to complete a X bedroom / X bathroom for a villa/apartment?

2. How much would it roughly cost?

3. Do you have the capacity to complete by a certain time frame? We need to move in by X.

4. Do you have a design team or do we need to provide design? Is it included in the fees or is it extra?

5. Do you do joinery work… i.e. build new closets, doors, kitchen cabinets?

6. When can you start?

7. Can we see your past projects?

If it matches with your time frame, budget and you like their designs, set up a time to talk about your project, and see how they are in person.

Some general questions to ask:

1. How long have you been doing this?

2. How many other projects you have going at the same time?

3. Do you have your own joinery, do you outsource it, or do I need to find another contractor for it?

4. Are all the employees under your company?

5. Do you have photos to share of your past work?

6. Here are some ideas of design. Show photos. Have you done them before?

The answers to these questions will reveal the company’s experience, availability, and how much attention they can give to your project.

Things to look out for:

Are they on time? Late? Early? Do they look professional? How do they act and reply? If everything feels OK, move on to the next question, “Can we visit one of your sites?”

6. Ask Contractors: Can We Visit Your Sites?

This questions will really help you learn more about contractor’s capabilities and if their work lives up to their words. Seeing the actual homes is probably the best way to decide if you want to continue this relationship.

We had some interesting experiences with this. Here are 3 which stood out as red flags:

Contractor 1

One homeowner (a mutual friend) was overall happy with the contractor, and we liked the finishing and his attitude. However, we came across another homeowner (on Instagram) who had a terrible experience with the same contractor. The client wasn’t happy with the front door finishing, and said she was blamed for not being smart enough to know the difference in materials, and was told she is the most complaining customer. 

Contractor 2

Contractor said we could see his site at ‘80% completion’ which looked like a 50% completion with just a few guys working on site. Site manager came late, and wasn’t so confident in answering our questions. The contractor never replied us after the site visit. Later, we found out from a homeowner there was months of delay, and the contractor didn’t come back to finish the work.

Contractor 3

Surprisingly, we also had a contractor who REFUSED to show us any sites! She said it’s a privacy issue, and only if we sign the contract, then she will ask her clients to open the door. That was a red flag to us.

7. Verify Your Potential Contractor

It’s OK to be trusting, but make sure they are worthy of your trust!

Do verify their trade licence and that they are legally registered in the UAE to do whatever work you need for them to do.

For larger scale projects, request for a warranty cheque and make sure they have proper insurance In case of bankruptcy. Remember: this only protects you.

Conclusion

That said, as your home renovation journey begins, you will always need to ‘find a guy’ to fix the AC, the pipes, the doors, the leaks, the lights, etc. So, start building up a list of contractors you can trust and build your dream team. You never know when you’re going to need someone.

Next: What I Wish I Knew Before I Renovated in Dubai