Yes, glad you understand our conserns as well, if we recommend someone and they steal from you, then we become liable.
You might try Angies List. The site allows consumers to rate professionals that have worked with them. I cannot guarantee accuracy of information.
Not sure where the houses are located, but I have worked with Bill Rieger of "New Creations" in the past, and know him to be reliable and reputable as a contractor and inspector. Ask if he would be interested in taking on your project houses; you can contact him at: 586-610-8591
Keller Williams Macomb St Clair