While a good storm can be good for a deep sleep, it’s usually pretty hard on the exterior of our home. The strong winds can dislodge shingles and siding while hail can pock-mark or pierce it. We all have had a contractor knock on our door letting us know they could fix it for free through our insurance. This is often true, however, don’t feel like this contractor is your only choice. When picking a contractor to do your storm repairs (or any work for that matter) you might want to consider the following:
- Does the contractor have a local, physical location? A traveling contractor, one who follows the storms, could pose future communication issues. If you would have a problem with their work later down the road it might be hard to get a hold of them or have them return within a timely manner. Local contractors gives you the benefit of being able to walk through their door and address any issues face to face. You also have the word of mouth advantage with a local contractor; use your neighborly resources and find out if this contractor is of good quality and character- your community will know.
- How long has this company been established? This goes without saying, but a company that has been around for a while usually has good business models in practice. You should ask if there has been any company name changes within the years they have been in business; many companies when faced with a lawsuit change their name afterwards to shed any negative images or legalities that could haunt their business. This doesn’t mean all companies change their name for this reason alone; some companies change their name to better fit their expanding company.
- Does this company ask you, the homeowner, to get any building permits or do they do it? If a company asks you to pull any permits this should set off red flags. A city will not issue any permits to a company who is not licensed but will issue a permit to any homeowner.
- Is this contractor licensed, bonded, and insured? This gives you, the homeowner, a little peace of mind through knowing they know what they are doing and if anything does go wrong they have the money to rectify it.
- Do your research! Both local and traveling contractors have a website or at the very least have reviews on the web. Look up that contractor and see what previous customers have to say about their quality and craftsmanship. See if the good out weighs the bad.
While you cannot control when a storm hits, you can control who does the repairs. If someone is offering to do it free through your insurance that means any contractor can do it for free!