Winnipeg, MB – Thewinter season, for the most part, has come and gone for another year and your property may have taken a beating since last October. Now that spring is in the air (technically) that means it may be time to start thinking about the upkeep of your home and yard. Getting a jump on it now may not be a bad thing as service providers start booking jobs and getting busy.
“From furnace inspection, roof and window replacement to yard maintenance, there is a lot to consider when dealing with your home,” says Len Andrusiak, President and CEO of BBB serving Manitoba and NW Ontario. “We just want homeowners to do their own due diligence when putting more money into their property.”
BBB’s Top 10 things to consider when hiring a contractor:
- Ask at least three companies for bids based on the same requirements. Discuss the bids in detail with each contractor and ask them about variations in pricing. The lowest-priced bid may not be the best.
- Use BBB’s Request A Quote program. This makes it easy for consumers to secure three quotes in a timely fashion.
- Get estimates and contracts in writing on company letter head.
- Get any verbal promises in writing. Make sure the contract includes the start date and expected completion date.
- Do not fall for high-pressure sales tactics and be wary of unsolicited door-to-door sales.
- Avoid cash deals as a way to not pay tax. This is a deceptive practice and you may not have a fall back if things go wrong.
- Ask about the company’s insurance. Does it carry worker’s compensation, property damage and liability insurance? Ask for proof of insurance or for the name of an insurance agent you can call to verify the coverage.
- Ask whether the contractor is licensed for the type of work you need. Does the firm meet the bonding requirements of your city or province?
- Check with local authorities to find out whether permits are needed. The contractor should be aware of any permits or inspections that may be required.
- Don’t pay the entire amount due until the work is completed and you are satisfied. Be careful if a contractor wants to be paid in full up front. In some cases, a contractor may need a down payment to cover materials. But the bulk of the money should not be due until the work is complete. A 10 to 15 percent deposit is typical. If the contractor requires more, make sure you understand why.
- Always check a company’s BBB Business Profile at www.bbb.org.
Len Andrusiak, President & CEO
Better Business Bureau of Manitoba and NW Ontario
1030 B Empress Street
For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau has been helping people find businesses and brands they can trust. In 2016, people turned to BBB more than 165 million times for BBB Business Reviews, all available for free at bbb.org. BBB Serving Manitoba and NW Ontario, founded in 1930 and is one of 108 local, independent BBBs in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. In 2016, consumers turned to BBB Serving Manitoba and NW Ontario more than 375 thousand times for Business Reviews.