Hiring any kind of service provider can be a nightmare. Unfortunately, the horror stories about being conned or ripped off are plentiful. But, not to worry, we’ve compiled a list of the most common red flags to be aware of so that you won’t become another one of those stories!
In this article, the Trinity Surfaces team will cover what to ask and how to know the difference between a professional you can trust and an impersonator you cannot.
Let’s get to it!
Who are they?
One of the best ways to dig into a tile contractor’s credibility is through social media or the Internet in general. Platforms like Facebook [business pages] and Yelp! Provide raw details into a company’s past, including real user reviews, customer service examples, and if they’re on top of their game, you’ll be able to see photos and videos of their work. Another option to investigate is through Google. Type their name or company name into Google and you’ll potentially see other reviews and information that will be useful. If you need to narrow down your search, type in “Tile Contractor Name Contractor City.” For example: “John Doe Contractor Seattle.” In this day and age, if you can’t find anything on the Internet about who you’re working with, the red flag is flying high.
Is there a pre-pay demand?
If a tile contractor is giving you an unreasonably hard time about paying cash before any services have been rendered, slam on those brakes! A written contract is the first step in the process. Without that (and a full review of all the other points in this article), never hand cash over to anyone.
Are they actually listening?
If your food order is wrong at a restaurant, you’ll certainly send it back, right? If something as menial as a meal out matters, your tile project plans most definitely do! Make sure the tile contractor is not just listening to what you’re saying and saying it back to you, but that they truly understand the vision you have. For clarity, ask a lot of questions that only someone who understands your goal would know the answers to.
Can you view work samples?
This piggy-backs on the first point: if you can’t find any trace of their work or customer satisfaction on the Internet, be leery. The modern [trustworthy] contractor takes full advantage of utilizing social media to promote their work and credibility.
What education, licensing do they have?
During your initial conversation with the potential contractor, ask questions about their licensing and education standards. Licensing varies from city to city and state to state, but a credible tile contractor will give you well-rounded answers that are authentic and not robotic.
Are they reliable through the planning process?
If a tile contractor is difficult to get in touch with in addition to missing or being late to meetings, cross them off of your list of prospects. As a customer, you are a top priority. A lazy or unprofessional contractor will be unapologetic about tardiness, while a motivated professional attends all meetings and is easy to get a hold of.
What does your gut say?
You know the age-old saying “trust your gut?” Well, use it here! When hiring a contractor, intuition is a great tool to use when looking to hire someone. As a matter of fact, intuition is proven to be the human brain’s personal algorithm of judgment. It takes our knowledge, experiences, and common sense to give us a “good vibe” or a “red flag” when we are in a decision making process. So, if something seems “off” about their too-good-to-be-true low price or their lack of knowledge about the industry, exercise your ability to say, “no.” And move onto the next prospect.
This post was written by David Insogna