Mistakes to avoid when choosing a home improvement contractor
By Staff Reports
Monday, February 25, 2013
Consumer complaints and lawsuits regarding home improvements are on the rise according to Ripoff Reports. A homeowner who doesn’t do his homework before embarking on a project could find himself with poor workmanship, inferior products, health and safety issues or even legal problems.
So what’s a homeowner to do?
“Start by reviewing the three most common mistakes people make when embarking on a home improvement project,” said Dave Harrison, chief marketing officer of Champion Windows, Sunrooms, Roofing and Home Exteriors.
Mistake No. 1: Buying only on price
Your home is probably one of the most expensive items you own, so making improvements is not the place to budget shop.
“Make sure you are getting quality products professionally installed. A properly done home improvement should only have to be done once,” said Harrison. “And remember the old adage: you get what you pay for.”
Mistake No. 2: Not looking at the long-term investment benefits
When your home improvement project is finally over, you should be getting more than an upgrade to your home. You should also see an increase in your home’s value. When you do it right, you can reduce energy and maintenance costs and increase comfort and pride in your home and never have to worry about it again for as long as you own your home.
On the flip side a poorly executed project can lower the value of your home, have to be re-done in several years and even put your family’s health at risk. For example, water damage from faulty windows could cause mold.
Mistake No. 3: Not knowing how to screen a contractor
“I’ve seen many independently owned contractors close their businesses after a short year or two,” Harrison said. “When selecting a contractor to work with it is important to get a sense of who they are, what products they use and how long they have been in business.”
According to Harrison there are four essential questions to ask during this screening process:
• Who designs it?
• Who builds it?
• Who installs it?
• Who guarantees it?
“When you don’t get the correct answers to these four questions you may end up with an inferior investment, expensive surprises, property damage or even lawsuits and liabilities,” Harrison said. “Ultimately, the answer you want is that there is a single source of accountability for your project.” Having one company design, build, install and guarantee the product and work can save you time, money and hassles in the long run.
Make sure you have a contractor you can trust for the long-term. This long-term relationship starts with a quality product and professional installation and includes a warranty from a company that has longevity.