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  • Writer's pictureJoseph Knight

5 Tips for Hiring a Home Service Contractor

Purchasing a home is a big part of the American dream. Home ownership can represent a symbol of hard work, a commitment, and a significant investment. But as many homeowners will tell you, buying your own house is only the beginning. Seldom does anyone talk about the masses of maintenance it takes to ensure your home remains in perfect condition. Rarely mentioned is that routinely you will need reliable, affordable, and knowledgeable home service contractors to help maintain your property. It really can be a potential minefield to find trustworthy contractors. But how do you find reliable home service contractors with so many proverbial 'cowboys' and chancers in the industry?

Here are our five tips for hiring a home services provider for your exterior cleaning, pressure washing, plumbing, roofing, gardening, and home maintenance needs.

1. Hire professional contractors with proven track records. We are fortunate in modern times to have access to the internet. Not only does the web allow you to search hundreds of service contractors to compare prices in your area, but also allows you to check out their reputation. You can get a good feel for the professionalism of a service contractor online by checking out the info on their website. Although all company websites will tell you how great they are, how does the site look? Does it look professional? Are their services and content listed in the clear, concise, and easy to understand manner? You can get a good idea about any company with that strategy. If the contractor's website has a testimonials page with reviews from former customers, you can check those out. But how often would a company list an unfavorable review? Put the service contractor's name into your Google search to find any independent studies, or search the social media accounts of the contractor for any comments about their services from their former clients. Alternatively, you can utilize the time-honored tradition of asking your friends for word of mouth recommendations. Maybe they have used someone for years who is trustworthy and reliable. Hiring a reputable home service contractor that you can trust to do a proper job is the first and most important tip of all.

2. Choose smaller service contractors that offer a personal touch. We live in a world where in-the-box franchises seem to be the way forward. They give people confidence and comfort because you always know exactly what you are going to get regardless of where you might be in the world. But they can also be very sterile and faceless in attitude and philosophy. However, when it comes to hiring home service contractors, nothing is better than a smaller business that offers that unique and personal touch. There is a myriad of smaller contractors in your area that offer a personal service where you are speaking directly to the business owner or someone close to the top of the organization. Having face-to-face conversations with owners of the contract companies and decision makers means they will know exactly what you expect from them in terms of quality and duties, which will simplify the whole process. Smaller companies also heavily rely on possible repeat customers such as yourself so will do their best to impress you. Smaller contractors will go that extra yard to ensure you are happy and satisfied. And if there is a problem with their work that needs fixing, you are directly dealing with the contractor instead of dealing with layers of operations managers and bureaucratic nonsense. Coping with smaller home service contractors ensures that personal touch, which every homeowner needs and appreciates.

3. Reliable contractors with proper insurance. One of the most important things you need to remember when hiring a home service contractor is that they are fully insured in the eventuality of an accident or potential damage to your home. You do not want to come home from shopping to find your home damaged and your contractor has evaporated into the ether never to be seen again. If you are dealing with a one-man-band handyman-type home service contractor, you should seriously find out if they are adequately insured. Most small-time handymen do not have the requisite insurance policies to cover any damage they might make to your property. One of the significant pros of hiring a contractor from a larger firm is they will undoubtedly already have proper insurance. It is essential that you not only ask, but also physically check if your potential home service contractors are covered in case of any accidents or breakages. That could save you a massive amount of money if something unforeseen happens. Do not forget to check their insurance coverage before you agree to or sign any contracts.

4. Use specialists who have the expertise you need. Maintaining and fixing issues with your home is such a multi-faceted thing. There are so many components to your home. Sometimes you will need an electrician, other times a plumber, roofer or even expert cleaners. For instance, in some cases, your home will need exterior cleaning services that need pressure washing and soft washing services. Exterior cleaning also has many different categories. For example, different cleaning approaches and techniques are required when dealing with different materials such as wood, vinyl, metal, concrete, stucco, brick, and many more. You didn't realize there was so much involved in exterior cleaning, did you? That's precisely why you need to ensure you hire service contractors who are experts that specialize in the areas you need. Many handymen have vast knowledge about many different home maintenance categories, but they are generally a "Jack of all trades and a master of none." And although there is nothing fundamentally wrong with that, some jobs need a specialist. Imagine letting someone who is not a fully qualified electrician fix your home's electrics with limited experience, just because they know something about electronics. The same can be said about roofing experts, plumbers, and even lawncare or landscapers. Each home maintenance sector is its entity, so it's essential you do not hire a home service contract that says, "I can do that too." If you hire an expert, it might cost you a little bit more now, but over the long-term, it will save you untold amounts of dollars. Getting the job done correctly by an expert is the only path to take.

5. Choose local contractors with excellent customer care and satisfaction. Choosing local home service contractors who have excellent customer care and offer satisfaction guaranteed is a very underrated tip. It's always good to select contractors from your local town, city, or state because they will automatically have an affinity to you, and it's important to support local businesses. Imagine if there are problems or issues with the maintenance work and you need them to come quickly to fix the problems. Local contractors who already have a good relationship with you will personally care about rectifying the problems. Many smaller and local contractors want to ensure you are 100% satisfied with the job. Customer care is a very underrated thing that you need to consider seriously. Make sure your chosen contractors take pride in their work and want to exceed your expectations. And if you do find such a home service contractor that has that level of expertise and commitment, make sure you recommend them to your friends and use them every time. We all need to support local businesses. Because if we go the route of hiring larger franchise contractors, we will lose something unique and personal. Keep it in the community if possible.

Conclusion It might seem like a lot of knowledge to absorb in a single sitting, but we cannot stress enough how important it is to make the right choices in regards to handpicking home service contractors. Sometimes it's easy to keep costs to a bare minimum by hiring a 'Jack of all trades' handyman. But as we have discussed, in the long-term, it will eventually cost you more. Experts and specialists know exactly what the problems are and what needs fixing, and then take the proper route and precautions to perform the duties most safely and professionally. This is especially important when we are talking about roofers, electricians, plumbers, and exterior cleaning services. Jack of all trades tend to have no insurance and lack fuller knowledge on all those different home service maintenance topics and could eventually cost you more in insurance if something goes wrong. They can also cost you more in the long-run because the jobs are never completed to the highest possible standards. Make sure you choose a home service contractor that is a specialist in the required areas, has a reputation for quality work, has full insurance coverage, and comes highly recommended by former clients. Smaller companies that take customer satisfaction and customer care seriously should always be at the top of your wish list. Always try to hire contractors that operate in your local area or state, so they are rapid to respond to any problems or quick fixes. It's also helpful to support local companies. If you adhere to these five tips for hiring a home service contractor, you will never go wrong. Keep your wits about you and all bases covered, and you will get the best service imaginable.

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