Buying a home is exciting, you’re making the heaviest investment in your future you’ll likely ever make. Owning a house is yet more exciting, you’re taking care of the home where your family lives and where you spend the majority of your time. Not so much fun, but something that has to be done, is the continued maintenance of the home. You have to assure it stays up to your standards as not only a safe and comfortable place for you and your family, but also assure the exterior meets the standards of your HOA and according to your lifestyle is inviting for guests whether they’re enjoying an afternoon visit, a dinner party, or staying overnight. Exterior maintenance of your home may not have been your first thought when making the purchase but has to be done occasionally.
Meeting the Contractor
The first task you face when it comes time to conduct maintenance on your siding, windows, doors, or gutters is to meet a contractor. Having three contractors bid the job is a well known standard, but in some cases two bids will be sufficient and for other jobs four or even five bids may be appropriate. What is important to remember is you aren’t only receiving a bid on the work but also meeting the contractor. You need more than the bid but also to find out how the contractor intends to conduct the job.
With three bids, you’ll likely receive a really expensive bid from someone you don’t intuitively trust, and a rock bottom bid from someone who seems like they’ll do a good job but doesn’t seem clean and professional as you would expect somebody at your home to be. Then there’s the bid that sounds reasonable based on your previous experience with contract work and the company presents itself as being professional, courteous, and trustworthy.
Trusting Your Impressions
The first impression may seem a no-brainer as to which contractor you choose, but there’s more to it. Consider the work they plan to do. In some cases, the inexpensive bid may be to simply patch and repair the immediate problem to maintain the structural integrity of your home, while the expensive bid is to do more than you need in order to assure your new home exterior remains matching and beautiful. The medium bid usually is to address the immediate problem while planning ahead for to allow for future problems to also be repaired easily over the upcoming years.
Regardless of the price and your impression with the representative who presents the bid, each contractor should provide their license and insurance so you can verify them before making your final decision. You should also be allowed to check references and view a portfolio of previously completed work. Don’t be shy, a reputable contractor won’t balk at these requests but more likely proudly display the work he has performed in the past.
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