If you need painting done, but don’t have the time or the know-how to do it yourself, a professional painting team can help. However, it is important to recognize that not all painters are created equally, and when choosing a contractor, there are some things you should look for before deciding which one to hire. You will want to find a contractor who:
- Provides free written estimates
- Has a stellar rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB)
- Carries good general liability insurance coverage
Free Written Estimates
No quality contractor will charge you to come to your home or business and give you an estimate. There are some out there who will provide an oral estimate for free, but what you’re looking for is a free written estimate. This way, you have everything you need, (including an itemized list of charges, and the type of paint used) written down so you can compare it with other estimates, and the company is locked into providing what they said they would, if you choose to hire them.
Stellar Rating with the BBB
Always check out your contractors with the BBB. Though you’re looking for one with a good rating (A+ is ideal), recognize that a perfect, flawless record, is something to be wary of. The nature of business itself, regardless of industry, proves that not everyone will be satisfied with the quality of product or service offered. Things will happen to good companies, so make sure you read the details of any complaints, and check to see if they have been resolved by the business, either with or without assistance from the BBB.
General Liability Insurance
Any quality contractor will carry general liability insurance to protect both your property and his business, should anything happen while he’s on the job. Reputable contractors will also carry commercial auto insurance and worker’s compensation through a well-rated insurance company. Verify this coverage directly with the insurance carrier, to make sure there is ample coverage, and the policy is currently instated. Ask the carrier to provide proof of insurance coverage, or have the contractor ask his or her insurance agent to fax it to you for verification.
Avoid Contractors Who Ask for Deposits or Will Beat the “Best” Price
You should never hire contractors who require a deposit before beginning the job, or contractors who advertise they will beat any price. Established and reputable painters will have running capital to handle the expense of your job, without requiring payment from you until services are rendered to your satisfaction. Reputable contractors will provide quality service, and if someone’s willing to beat the “best” price, then they’re likely to give you shoddy work.
You are paying for a service, and as with many things in life, the saying “you get what you pay for” rings true with painting, too. Do your homework, and you’ll be pleased with the service you get. Make sure to get quotes from at least three providers, so you can choose the one that works best for you, keeping in mind cheap is not always best.