7 Steps to Selecting a Reputable Fencing Contractor

 Steps to Selecting a Reputable Fencing Contractor

Steps to Selecting a Reputable Fencing Contractor
Steps to Selecting a Reputable Fencing Contractor

Hiring a fencing contractor can be a difficult process. You want to find a person who will do quality work that will last for decades to come. At the same time, you want to avoid getting ripped off in the process. So how does one navigate through all of the fencing contractors to find one who is reputable? Here are seven tips to help you accomplish that goal:

1. Research

It does not matter if you are hiring an auto mechanic, a nanny or a fencing contractor, you must start the hiring process by doing some thorough research on the people that you are considering for the job. Before you have your first meeting with a contractor, here are some of the items that you need to keep in mind:

  • When people are searching through the listings of various contractors, they frequently choose the company at the top of the listings. This type of behaviours has led to many mistakes and bad hirings. It is important to remember that just because a company is listed first, it does not necessarily mean they are the best at what they do.
  • Use the Better Business Bureau to your advantage. The service is free. You can find out a lot of important information about contractors this way.
  • If there is not a verifiable physical address in a contractor’s advertisement, do not contact him. It is a common practice of shady fly-by-night contractors to skip town after they do a job. Therefore, they do not want to be traced to a real address.
  • If you keep getting voicemail when you call the company, you should be suspicious. If the contractor answers the phone, but does not say the name of the company, you should consider that another red flag.

2. The interview

Some of the red flags that you may encounter during the interview process may include:

  1. Do not do business with any contractor who refuses to give you a written estimate for the job he is going to do. All legitimate contractors will provide a written estimate.
  2. You should be suspicious of any contractor who insists that you pay in cash. Some legit contractors will offer a cash discount. This is fine, as long as they do not insist that you pay in cash.
  3. Do not hire any contractor that pressures you to make a decision right away. This is common behaviour for fly-by-night companies.

3. Important questions

  • Does the contractor provide a full or partial warranty on all of the work that they do?
  • Are their jobs usually finished on time?
  • How close are your estimates to what the actual price ends up being?
  • If you are getting your fence repaired or replaced, find out exactly how they are going to do it.
  • What materials do they recommend for the job? Why do they recommend them?
  • Is the contractor licensed and insured?
  • Don’t forget, contractors give free estimates, so it is in your best interest to get as many estimates as possible.

4. Planning

  • You will need to decide exactly how much you can afford to pay for labour and materials. After you have come up with a total, talk to several fence contractors and see if they can work within your budget. Many contractors are willing to negotiate their price.
  • Figure out exactly where the fence will go. Will you be using different types of fencing?
  • Check out photos of fencing on the Internet and in magazines. These will give you some ideas. When you hire a contractor, it is important that he or she knows exactly what you want before they begin working. Showing the contractor photos of what you have in mind is a good idea.

5. Timeline

As you start to narrow down your choices for a contractor, you will need to get a specific timeline as to when they will finish the job. If you expect a discount if the contractor takes longer to finish the job than expected, make that clear before the work begins. Get any agreement like this in writing.

6. Guarantee

Ideally, you should only hire a contractor that completely guarantees his or her work. This will ensure that you are protected if any problems arise in the contractor’s work weeks or months in the future. The materials used in the job should be under warranty as well. Many automatic gate companies provide extended warranties on their products.

7. Payment

Before any work gets started, confirm the payment requirements of the contractor. Some companies offer a payment plan, some get paid when the job is finished and others demand to be paid up front. If you want to pay by credit card, find out if this is acceptable.

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