How to Hire a Home Professional
How to Hire a Home Professional In Three Easy Steps
If you’re a home owner, you’re eventually going to have to hire a professional to do repairs and make changes around your house. In fact, if you’ve owned a home for a year or so, odds are you’ve already had to contract with some type of home professional. Hiring a professional can take loads off of your mind, allowing you to focus on work, family, and hobbies rather than the state of your home. However, it can also be nerve wracking, as you want to make sure you’re using the right kind of professional, someone who is actually going to help you get the job done and not try to pull a fast one when it comes to payments. If you follow three simple steps, you’ll be more likely to hire a home professional who you can really work with.
Step One: Credibility Matters
When you mention that you need some work done on your home, it probably seems like contractors start coming out of the woodwork. All of a sudden, your friend’s son, co-worker’s uncle, and the guy who checks you out at the supermarket are all home services providers, and they can get you a low rate too. While it’s wonderful to want to help out your neighbors, you can’t go by word of mouth alone. Perhaps one of these options really is as good as he or she sounds, and perhaps you really can save money by going this route, but in order to make sure that’s the case, you’ll need to do some detective work: Find out if the contractor is affiliated with a company.
If the contractor is affiliated with the company, use the company’s web site to see how long they have been in business, if they have any professional memberships (like the Better Business Bureau ), what jobs they’ve completed in the past, and if there are any client testimonials.
Whether or not the contractor is affiliated with a business, call your chamber of commerce to see if any complaints have been filed.
If possible, contact previous homeowners to ask for references.
Run a basic Internet search and check local posting boards Angie’s List to see if anyone has complained about the company or contractor.
Even though a neighbor or an acquaintance may be able to give you a better rate on your project, it’s usually better to go with an employee of an established home services company. This way, you can be sure that he or she has had to provide some type of credentials to get the job and you have someone that you can constantly stay in contact with if you need to discuss the work’s quality after it has been completed.
Step Two: Respect Matters
When you hire someone to work on your home, that person is your employee. Though he or she might have a lot more knowledge about home services, like painting and electrical work, than you do, he or she still needs to talk with you so you can agree to the project’s parameters. In addition, a professional home services provider should be willing to discuss and abide by the vision that you have for the completed project. If your contractor constantly tries to argue with you or disobeys professional and personal rules that you have set (like the deadline for the project or the fact that he or she is not to visit a certain part of your home), it’s time to get a new worker. However, be sure you know the difference between a worker’s suggestion based on professional knowledge and his refusal to honor your plans.
Step Three: Money Matters
When you hire someone to work on your home, you should pay a reasonable amount of money for quality work. Though the amount of money per job changes based on the type of job and the surrounding circumstances, it’s important that you “shop around” and you agree only to services that you can afford. The Internet is a great place to find the going rate for different services –everything from lawn cutting to professional electric work. Just be sure to realize that prices are determined by locality and extenuating circumstances (i.e. an immediate deadline for the project). Thus, you should use the Internet as a guide, but don’t marry it!
From choosing a worker who is affiliated with a business versus one who is not to making sure you can find a worker in your price range, the process of hiring an employee to work on your home can be lengthy. But that’s a good thing. You wouldn’t let just anyone come in your home, would you? If you want to make sure you have a good worker, follow these steps and be selective. Eventually, you’ll find the perfect company for you!