FAQs

DirectSubs was designed for builders, developers, house flipping pros, real estate investors and all the various contractors they use on a regular basis.

Pro Tip: Even if you’re a contractor who’s too busy to take on new clients and/or new work, you should still take advantage of registering even if it’s just to pay attention to the opportunities that become available. Do this so you have options if/when you decide to expand OR find out there’s a last-minute cancellation in your schedule, which we all know happens. Broadening your horizons and connecting with new investors can only be a good thing.

DirectSubs is a web-based app that connects people who build & flip houses with all the various contractors they use on a regular basis. For example, if you’re flipping a house and are in need of a framer or roofer, electrician, plumber, tile person, demo person or simply need someone to handle certain miscellaneous tasks throughout the project – you can post it @ DirectSubs.com and wait to be contacted by local, interested and available contractors.

We launched in the Philadelphia area and then rolled our service out to the Baltimore area. 

We’re currently offering open enrollment in the Boston area and are looking forward to getting to know our neighbors up north! Stay tuned for our next location.

CJ Koch created DirectSubs because he knew there needed to be an easier way to connect with contractors for his projects. CJ got tired of calling colleagues to ask “who they use” for certain trades because his people wouldn’t show up or got too busy or too expensive etc. He also noticed some of the contractors he used regularly were great at what they did and reasonably priced but unable to find work on a consistent basis. So after recognizing the disconnect, he launched DirectSubs in his hometown of Philly in hopes of creating some equilibrium within the industry.

Go to DirectSubs.com, click on the Register button and begin setting up your profile.

Pro Tip: The more detail about you and your company – the better! If you’re licensed & insured, include it! If you’ve been in business for over 10 years, include it! You get the point.

No you do not. However, the project owner (or person posting the project) will ultimately decide if they need someone to be licensed & insured.

No way! Those sites are geared towards homeowners which is great but DirectSubs is geared towards people who participate first hand in the real estate investment & construction industry.

Absolutely! Just keep in mind DirectSubs is intended for people who are well versed in construction management and/or real estate investing. So if this isn’t your strong suit, which is totally fine, I would suggest utilizing one of the many other sites available to homeowners.

Our policy is simple – cancel anytime and come back anytime as well.

First things first, you must perform your own due diligence regardless of how you obtained any prospective contractor’s information. However, to offer users an additional tool for making an informed decision, we integrated a rating system that takes effect after every project is marked complete. And this rating aggregates with previous ratings and remains attached to each user. Also, it’s worth mentioning that each side gets to rate the other based on relevant industry-related questions.

Pro Tip: As mentioned, no matter how you receive a referral or recommendation, regardless of who it’s from – you simply must perform your own due diligence. That begins with, but not limited to, interviewing the prospect and asking relevant questions. Additionally, you may want to consider asking for names/numbers of recent clients or affiliates to ask them about their experience with the contractor. And in the end, remember to go with your gut. Finally, if you end up working together, make sure you always over-communicate. Not once or twice but at every perceived juncture of the project.

This process isn’t much different than the previous explanation. In addition to reviewing their rating, you’ll want to meet them and if possible, meet at the jobsite in question. It should give you a glimpse into how they run their jobsite which may correlate to their overall professionalism. Also, chat with other subcontractors who are on site and ask them about their experience while working with this particular person.

Pro Tip: You may also want to consider discussing pay schedule as some builders etc will expect you to wait until their draw has been funded and others may expect you to wait up to 30 days after invoicing. It varies and there’s no right or wrong approach but it’s always best to broach beforehand. Additionally, you may want to touch on how you’ll be getting paid and if there will be any tax-related paperwork involved. Always best to iron this stuff out in the beginning.

As mentioned above, there are multiple things you can do including by not limited to talking to them and having relevant questions ready. Those questions could include permission to contact a couple of their recent clients to ask about their experiences with this contractor. You can ask them if they’re licensed & insured and how many years they have been in business and if they’re OSHA certified. Sometimes it’s also worth asking if they’ve had any recent disputes with clients or where they think the breakdown in communication typically happens and how they try to remedy that. Most importantly, make sure you don’t rush into any decisions and follow your gut as you should feel good about moving forward with this person or company.

Pro Tip: You should put the time in upfront and don’t rush into hiring the “1st available person” because 9 out of 10 times, that doesn’t end well for either party.

Because no matter how many connections you may have, it’s smart to be prepared for when your go-to girl/guy is busy, getting too expensive or away on vacation or fill-in-the-blank… Or maybe you have so many projects going on at once, your go-to people cannot service all of them within the timeline you need and time is money in this business. Or you’d simply like to establish new relationships and have more options. Regardless of the reason, I think you get the point. It’s better to establish yourself on DirectSubs sooner than later so you have the opportunity to cast that net when you need it.

Pro Tip: Even if you never need DirectSubs, maybe it’s worth keeping your finger on the pulse in the areas you invest your time & money to see what’s being posted. It’s just another form of data which can certainly come in handy.

Yes, you can choose whatever method you’re most comfortable with but please remember to verify your phone number from your mobile phone if you opt to receive notifications via text. You can do this by clicking on your username once you’re logged into the site. You’ll see “Verify Phone Number” in the dropdown and just follow the prompts. It only takes a few seconds to complete.

Absolutely. I usually begin by trying to incorporate a couple of pictures simply to help place the project into context. Also, try to be as descriptive as possible with your verbiage and expectations. If you need someone to be licensed, include it. If you need someone to be highly specialized in something, include it. Also, do your best to be realistic with your estimated project start date. So if you say you’ll be ready for someone to get started installing your interior doors & trim next Monday, do your best to make sure your material is on site and you’re ready. Timing is important and it’s one of the things you’ll be rated on once the project is marked complete.