Free Home Improvement Tips and Repair Advice
Selecting The Right Home Improvement Contractor
Be leery of the door-to-door salesman who offers unbelievable deals. As the old saying “if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is too good to be true”. Do your research and select a contractor that offers an appropriate balance of work quality and price.
Don’t be coerced by high pressure sales tactics. High pressure sales techniques come from sales quotas that have been imposed on workers to motivate “volume” of work rather than quality of work. If these workers don’t make their quotas, they don’t get paid. Because of this inherent conflict of interest, these workers often push for a larger job or higher price than needed. Don’t get “sold”!
Avoid contractors’ employees who offer to do the home repair job or improvement for less. If they are willing to steal from their company, you may not want them in/around your home. Moreover, they may not have the appropriate levels of experience or insurance coverage needed for the work. Finally, if they fail to perform the job effectively, you could have a harder time getting your differences resolved.
Seek home improvement references from trusted sources like HomeServiceReports.org. Our membership selection has been based on countless hours of research and extensive homeowner feedback. Because of our due diligence, you are more likely to be satisfied with the quality of work provided by our members. Other useful sources of information are your neighbors, friends, family and co-workers. But remember, one reference is not enough to make a strategic selection.
Get as many references as possible. Every company has at least a few satisfied clients. For reasons outlined above, HomeServiceReports.org conducts exhaustive research before endorsing a home service provider. Likewise, we recommend that you seek as many personal references as possible, particularly if you go outside the HomeServiceReport.org membership base.
Interview at least 3 companies, and ask them the tough questions. We recommend that you interview several contractors before making your final selection. How long have they been in business? Are members of the Better Business Bureau? What is their Contractor’s License number? Do they have “before” and “after” pictures? Will they set up a site visit with a previously served customer so you can inspect their work firsthand? How do they resolve “punch items”? Can they explain common pitfalls of the work? Can they show proof of insurance and workers' compensation? You get the picture.
Get at least 3 “apples-to-apples” home improvement or repair quotes. Make sure to clearly outline what you want completed and that you get comparable quotes from at least three providers. Cheaper does not always mean better. Go with the combination of price and quality that makes the most sense given your needs and budget.
Don’t ignore the importance of chemistry. It may sound silly, but don’t ignore the importance of liking the company that you bring into your home. All things being equal, it’s helpful to choose a project partner who you trust and who you can talk with openly about your project, especially if problems arise.
More Tips and Advice
Additional information about planning a home improvement or renovation project, as well as, additional tips and advice about working with contractors and repair companies is available in our home repair articles section.
Home Improvement Tips And Maintenance Advice For Specific Projects
For information about specific home improvement projects, please select one of the following links: