Educational Consumer Tips
Better Business Bureau
Category: Home Improvement
Choosing the right windows and window installer is an important decision for a homeowner. Beyond bringing light into your home, windows can also be a major source of heat loss or gain. Replacing windows in your home with energy efficient options could bring you a tax credit (new construction and rentals do not qualify). In order to apply for a tax credit, you must save receipts and the Manufacturer’s Certification Statement. Keep in mind that the tax credit does not include installation costs.
Once you’ve decided on materials, design elements and window type, it’s time to find an installer. BBB offers the following advice to find a trustworthy window installer:
Start your search with trust. BBB has Business Reviews on tens of thousands of window installers (good and bad) across the US. You can also search through the Accredited Business Directory to find trustworthy roofers in your area. BBB Accredited window installers have pledged to uphold BBB’s Standards of Trust and are obligated to resolve any complaints from customers.
Vet the installer carefully. Verify the license, insurance and state registration. Installers should meet all state and local requirements. Ask the installer for references from recent jobs. You can also check their complaint history with BBB or the state Attorney General’s Office.
Insist on a contract. Home improvement contracts over $1,000 must be in writing, but it is a good idea to obtain a detailed contract no matter what size the job. Contracts should include the contractor’s registration number and contact information, as well as the start and completion dates, total to be paid and a list of specifications and materials.
Have a payment schedule. Do not pay more than one-third of the contact in advance, unless special order materials are needed. Set up a payment percentage plan, based on the total cost, to be paid as work is completed.
About the Author: Rachel Gelb is Communications and Marketing Manager for BBB serving Eastern Massachusetts, Maine, Rhode Island and Vermont. Find Rachel on Google +.
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