Whether its calling a contractor for an upcoming project, or a service related issue, how do you determine who gets the job? For most people its price, am I right? You have asked your friends for a referral (that’s a good thing to do), maybe you checked online reviews, or maybe you used a neighborhood app or perhaps used other social media to ask around. So now it’s time to call that contractor or contractor’s and go with the lowest price which accommodates your time frame. But what if this lower price actually could cost you more? Would that change the way you do business? Let me share with you what I consider to be pertinent information which could save you major expenses, and will help you better understand why paying more for a contractor may actually be less costs to you.
Here are the things to always look for in any service repair company or contracting company.
Did you notice I stated company and not serviceman or handyman? This should be your first thing to consider and understand. Did you know that many individual businesses are not properly licensed and insured? Did you know that the state of Ga only requires workers compensation to be purchased by a company when they have on staff 3 or more people? Did you know it’s illegal to do contracting work without a tradesman license and a state business license? Did you know that many businesses do this and you need to be aware?!!!
Why this should matter to you:
1. There are laws in Georgia that require licensing of certain industries and trades and if someone wants to run a legitimate business they need to be licensed by the state. Never hire an unlicensed person who claims to have a business. Obviously he will charge less than the licensed company, but he’s already breaking the law, do you really want a person who is knowingly and regularly breaking the law to do your work? What kind of work do you think he may do? I think I would also question the integrity of this individual as well.
2. So, let’s assume the individual or business is licensed by the state for their trade, your next question should be “do you have a business license?” This would should be obvious, but people hire people all the time which aren’t licensed to do business. Never hire a person if they don’t have a business license. Of course they too will cost less, as naturally they aren’t paying taxes likely on their income, nor state or local taxes, and a sure flag for this person is “I can do the job for a discount if you pay with cash”. Again, would you want to hire a person who is likely knowingly and regularly breaking the law in regards to operating a business without a license nor paying income taxes as they should? Again, this is an integrity issue, not to mention how long will they be around and will they be there if there is a problem with their work and what kind of work will they perform?
3. Still for many of you, these things don’t matter much, as the job you have is a simple one, it’s only fixing some things around the house and the repairman will be around for ½ day doing it. I can tell you firsthand, I have seen disaster problems from these type of so called handyman, plumbers, electricians, etc. etc. You are risking more than a few dollars by hiring this individual, you may be putting your family’s lives in danger as well. The people doing “side work” or running a small business without proper licensing aren’t going to be as concerned with installing, or repairing your system(s) in regard to safety code or your overall best. They are there to flip a job and go to the next one. Perhaps you feel ok, that you have chosen a licensed individual so you’re alright. Well there is more to it than that, which leads me to the most important things to consider when hiring any service company or contractor to do work for you. I call it the 3Q’s. Quality Company + Quality products = Qualified pricing.
Here is how this works:
In my opinion a Quality company has all of the following:
1. Years in business in one area and highly regarded by the community. A company who has been around for 10 + years is in business because they are highly regarded in the area they service. This company will care for its customers and will be around for the long haul.
2. This business has an actual facility where they operate from. In other words it’s not a guy answering a phone in a truck, or from his house. A quality company has an actual facility which you could visit anytime, where they likely keep inventory, equipment, and have employees working on staff. They have someone on staff dedicated to answering calls. They also have actual W2 employees. This one thing alone will highly qualify a contracting company.
3. This business has a high level of standards, many reviews across the web, and an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, and a reputation of doing exceptional work, standing behind their work, and are regularly referred by others in the community.
4. This business has all proper licensing, and insurance. Meaning you may ask to see their license(s) and insurance: including actual workers comp (not the phantom policy), high liability limits, and a commercial vehicle policy. Did you know that if someone does work in your house with proper insurance and causes damage or gets injured that you may become personally liable? Yes, insurance companies can deny claims under certain circumstances. Furthermore, if this person gets injured on your property and doesn’t have workers compensation insurance, there is a good chance they will sue you for liability.
Some of you may argue that a quality company doesn’t need all of this (likely it’s the guy who has a business without an actual location). I would dispute it though and state that in an instance such as that, the business is not a company, it’s an individual and likely they aren’t properly insured, and likely don’t have W2 employees but rather 1099 subcontractors.
Quality products: It shouldn’t be too difficult to understand this, but there are businesses which regularly install inferior products. When checking prices, verify products, as often is the case, the reason one bid is much lower is the products alone are inferior to professional grade products. A quality company will refuse to install certain products and only use professional grade products, fixtures, and supplies.
Qualified pricing: When you take into consideration what makes a Quality company and consider that there is overhead for such company and that they will use Quality products it will naturally equate to a price which is Qualified. Meaning that it may be higher than other quotes, or even higher than you had expected or thought it would be. But a higher price in regards to these above statements will guarantee that you are getting many things more than just a repair. Cost of a job is determined by all of these factors as well as the service which is provided by the company. When you called did a live person answer and schedule your appointment? Did the person arrives in the allocated time frame or did they keep you informed of any delays? Did the contractor have the necessary items available to resolve the repairs needed in a prompt and timely manner? Did they clean up after themselves, arrive in a clean vehicle, show respect to your house by using safety drop clothes to protect your house and inform you of any safety or code violations? All of these things are part of the service, not just the repair. All of these along with hiring a quality company who uses quality products will ensure that in the long run, you probably spent less and got more for your money as they will guarantee the work and be available to address any concerns you could have.
I hope this article was helpful to you, and if so, please share. Always check resources online to verify a company. You can view their rating on the BBB (Better Business Bureau) website, check Google and Angie’s list reviews, their own website, and of course the State of Georgia licensing board. And ask the questions I presented above.
Owner of HIS PLUMBER 770-252-9966