Educational Consumer Tips
Better Business Bureau
Category: Home Improvement
Deciding what type of material to side or reside your home with is just as important as deciding who will take on the actual job. Use these tips as a guide when hiring a siding contractor.
Tips for Hiring a Siding Contractor:
Do Your Research. Ask friends, family members, and neighbors for names of reputable siding contractors in the area. Check out contractors at bbb.org for more business information and to read reviews from previous customers.
Get Multiple Estimates. Get at least three estimates from siding contractors for the job. Be sure each contractor visits your home in order to get the most accurate estimate. Get multiple estimates to get an idea of how much the job will cost. If a bid seems too low or too high, be cautious as the materials or workmanship may not be of good quality.
Check Qualifications. Be sure the business is licensed, bonded, and all the contractors and subcontractors who perform work are insured in case of an injury on the job. Some forms of siding materials may require an additional license. Find out if your state requires a license to install vinyl or other types of siding. It is also important to find out if your state requires that the contractor’s license number be included in any written contracts.
Request References. Ask the contractor to provide you with a list of references you may contract that had similar work done. Contact at least three references to ask if they were satisfied with the siding job and their experience with the contractor. If possible, ask to visit the reference’s home to check out the siding to see how the finished product will look and how it has held up over time.
Consider Cost. Remember that although one bid may be significantly lower than the others, it usually means you will get what you pay for. The other contractors may be charging more because of their experience and the quality of the materials they are using for the job. Regardless of the size of the siding job, you will not want to have to hire another contractor down the road because of poor craftsmanship the first time. The contractor should not request more than 25% upfront for the deposit.
Get All the Details in Writing. After accepting an estimate from the contractor, make sure the written contract includes: materials used for the job, start and completion date, an itemized list of costs, and payment schedule. If the contractor offers a warranty or guarantee, be sure the details are included in the contract.
Questions and Comments
Comment Submitted 11/23/2015
I appreciate your comment about the written contract. You are right, it's important that everything is included in the contract. The contract makes the business easier and clearer for both parties. We are looking for a contractor now, and I will keep your tips in mind for sure.
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