3 Things You Need to Know and 3 Things the Contractor Needs to Know
When you’re making a major purchase you want to know you are making a wise decision. But, remember, when you’re shopping the window replacement contractor is shopping, too. Here are 3 things you each need to know about each other.
What You Need To Know About A Window Replacement Contractor
1. Who Are They? And, no, the easy answer “they’re a window company” isn’t enough. You want to know more. Each company you consider should be a licensed or credential contractor who knows the requirements of your state and municipality. Are building permits required? Will they secure them? You want to know how long the company has been in business and check with your BBB or Registrar of Contractors and find out their track history. Do they have complaints? Have they solved the problems?
2. Who Will Install The Windows? Your best bet is to have your windows installed by a crew that works for the window replacement company. They know their company’s reputation is at stake. They are likely to be more considerate, make sure each window is installed correctly and to clean up after the job is done. Independent crews who are hired to install are more likely to hurry through the installation so they can move on to their next job.
3. Does The Company Carry Insurance? Now that you know who is installing your new windows, you want to make sure that the window replacement company has liability insurance and carries workman compensation for the crew that will install your windows. Protect yourself in the event of an accident by knowing they have the necessary coverages.
What the Contractor Wants to Know About You
1. Are You A Serious Buyer? You’re looking for an honest contractor and that contractor is looking for an honest buyer. Be up front. For example, let the contractor know that you are shopping, but that you will choose only 3 companies to visit your home for a sales pitch and a bid. Give them an idea of your timeframe. Do you want the windows installed as soon as possible or are just gathering information for a future purchase? The more information you give the contractor; the better chance you will have of getting a contractor who wants your work. Don’t lead the contractor on. If you are going to do one window at a time to stay within your budget, be up front. Don’t ask for a whole house bid and then try to hold the contractor to it one window at a time.
2. What Is Your Deciding Factor? Tell the contractor if you are looking for a low bid. Don’t ask for a bid on the highest quality and highest priced glass and window frames if what you really want is the lowest possible price. If you’re looking for value instead of just a low price, let the contractor know. Help them tailor their bid to your needs. Not sure exactly what you want or what you can afford? Ask for a good-better-best bid.
3. Be A Knowledgeable Consumer. Do your homework. Have an idea of what you want to buy. Know the differences between various frames and glass. Tell the contractor what you want, but then ask for his or her opinion. They may have a better idea for a window!
If you’re looking for replacement windows, treat the contractors you interview fairly and expect the best from them. Always work with a licensed window replacement company and be sure you read all the fine print and know the warranties before you sign on the dotted line. Then, enjoy the beauty and energy savings of new windows in your home.