Eight Pro Tips: Choosing the Right Contractor
When it comes to basement waterproofing, foundation wall repair, crawl space encapsulation, concrete repair, and radon testing, you want to make sure you choose the right contractor to do business with. Some things to consider throughout the process are warranties, experience, training, customer reviews, reputation, service calls, maintenance, licensing, insurance, site inspections, and proper communication. These key components will provide a remarkable experience from start to finish. Before you decide on a contractor, make sure to consider the following.
When choosing the right contractor, you want to make sure what items are under part-time and life-time warranty. This is helpful to know when discussing products and determining what is worth it and what is not. If a malfunction in your system occurs, it is helpful to know what you will or will not be paying for. In many cases, if you have maintenance done on your system every year, you will not need to pay for any repairs if they are under warranty.
Experience and Training:
When evaluating which contractor is right for you, it is worth your time to research their experience with those services. For example, how many customers have they served? How many years have they been in business? Can you see examples of previous jobs? There are ways to figure out more about a company’s experience such as exploring their website, looking at their before and after photos and photo galleries, asking them questions about recent or past projects, looking at their employee page, customer reviews, etc. Those who have the best past and present experience typically perform the best work.
As for training, professional contractors will continue to find new ways to improve and educate their employees, whether it is sending them to training, doing roleplay, having weekly meetings with leadership, sending field supervisors out to job sites, and sharing goals and values to be one unified team. Contractors who want to provide the best customer service will do what it takes to grow their team and better their performance.
Customer Reviews and Reputation:
When you are looking for the right contractor for you and your home repair needs, it is crucial to do your research and read reviews about the company on Google, Facebook, Home Advisor, Yelp, etc. Whether they are a one-star or five-star company, it is important to do your research. The quality and quantity of reviews speak volumes about a company. If someone you know used that specific contractor, ask them questions about how their project went. What you read and hear about will give you an idea of the company’s reliability, communication, standards, and overall performance.
Service Calls and Annual Maintenance:
Many handymen and contractors can repair your home, but will they be there for the long-haul if an issue arises? Choosing a contractor who addresses your concerns, answers your questions, and is there for you if your system malfunctions are the type of company that you can rely on. Ask if they have a service department or if they offer annual maintenance to ensure your system remains properly function all year long.
When searching for a contractor, it is important to find one that is licensed. This means that the contractor has met the state requirements for contractors. If you are looking to sell your house in the future, this is especially important. Work completed by an unlicensed contractor does not typically go through in real estate transactions. You can find licenses on most state DLLR (Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation) websites, and if a company is licensed, they will typically share that on their website or during the inspection. If they do not offer that information, make sure to ask.
Insurance is another important factor when it comes to working with the right contractor. Your contractor’s insurance policy not only protects the company, but it also defends you as the homeowner from having any responsibility for an injury that occurs on your land or property. You can find most of this information in the BBB (Better Business Bureau), but you can also ask the company directly. For example, if a vehicle from the insured company hits your mailbox, the company must pay for the damage.
Meeting with a salesperson or inspector in person will provide the best results when it comes time for installation. An in-person inspection is much more reliable than a phone call, email, or text message of pictures, especially if measurements are involved. Having an expert view of the issue firsthand allows them to confidently recommend the proper solution. They may even uncover a different source of the problem or see another potential issue that could cause damage to the home. This also gives you a first impression of the company and provides you with a comfortable approach to your home repair needs.
One of the best practices that lead to success is effective communication. For example, it is helpful to receive a confirmation call regarding the initial appointment and to receive a call from the installation crew to let the customer know when they will arrive. This allows both parties to be on the same page. When you are debating between contractors, communication is one of the best ways to tell how your experience will go with that specific contractor. The level of communication you receive initially with that company is the level of communication you should be able to expect throughout the entire process.