Looking for contractors like electricians, carpenters and painters can feel like a crapshoot. Hiring someone to repair or renovate your home may fulfill your dreams or become the stuff of nightmares.
How can you find local contractors who will do the job and do it well?
It can be difficult, but there are countless resources available, from online review sites to recommendations from friends. The key is to do thorough research before making your choice. We recommend using multiple sources of information in order to get a clear picture before putting your money on one contractor.
Cautionary Tale:Jill and Bob look for roofing contractors. Bob takes a recommendation from a neighbor, while Jill takes a recommendation from a neighbor and then follows it up with her own research. Three weeks later Bob is still waiting for his roof to be finished. Jill's roof was finished in a couple of days leaving her time to pursue her hopes and dreams. It turn's out that Bob's contractor was his neighbor's nephew who wasn't even licensed. Bob gambled and lost. DON'T BE BOB!!!
Where to look
- Word of mouth is an excellent place to start. Ask friends and family to give you names of contractors they would recommend. Then make a list of their recommendations to use as the starting point for your research.
- If you don't have anyone personally to ask, most towns have Facebook pages where you can ask for local recommendations.
- Local real estate agents are an excellent source for information about contractors as they often have to schedule property maintenance and repairs.
- Check out each company's website. Most will have a list of the types of jobs they do, photos of their work, and contact information.
- Use sites like Angie's List, Yelp, Consumer's Checkbook, and Google + local to read reviews about each contractor on your list.
- While some companies pay people to write positive reviews about them, it usually isn't the case with local contractors.
- Read the reviews, don't just look at the ratings. It is important to be sure that the people doing the ratings value the same things you do. Someone may give a bad rating because the company's van didn't look nice in his driveway, but it's possible this doesn't matter to you.
- Bad reviews can be positive. A bad review shows transparency in the company. If a bad review is responded to by the company and rectified, this shows that they are committed to making things right with their customers. No one is perfect after all.
Whether you have a list scribbled into a notepad or an excel sheet, as long as you have taken the time to vet each contractor thoroughly, you should be able to find quality people to do qaulity work. Use the online reviews and ratings, recommendations from friends and neighbors, and recommendations from industry professionals to make an informed decision.
Looking for a reliable Electrician in the Portsmouth, NH area? Reach out to Artisan Electric at (603) 743-4005. We bring "Power to the People."