Wouldn’t it be nice if selecting a home contractor was as easy as 1, 2, 3… 4, 5? The fact of the matter is that selecting a contractor is anything but a cut and dried equation. Doing a strong contractor evaluation is time intensive and there is no established formula for making your selection. We’ve put together a checklist for you that should help in your process.
- How long have they been in business?
- How long are they going to be in business?
- How are their online reviews?
- Do you like them?
How long have they been in business?
The answer to this one can help you to quickly eliminate some of the contractors in contention. While there is no perfect number of years to indicate whether you should consider a contractor, there are a couple ways to look at this. Perhaps a good delineation would be 0-3 years, 4-10 years and 11+ years. In looking at contractors with 0-3 years of experience, they will likely have a great deal of enthusiasm. But, they are still getting their feet wet and learning some newcomer mistakes. You don’t want to be the training ground. Contractors with 4-10 years’ experience have made the newcomer mistakes and are well past getting their feet wet. Do your due diligence on review sites first but this is a significant amount of experience. You are, however, looking at a different level of experience when you get into the double digits. Based on our US economy over the last 2 decades, you are now looking at a contractor who has survived an economic recession and is still prospering. Proven to have weathered so many different types of storms, you can feel confident on this front. We have been proudly serving the Cleveland market since 1997.
How long are they going to be in business?
Reading this title, you may think we have a magic ball. The real question is whether they are going to be around when you need maintenance, bulbs and upgrades. We hear so many stories about contractors that seem to disappear and cannot be found as soon as something goes wrong. A good rule of thumb is if they’ve been around a long time, they will still be around and will be easy to find when you need maintenance and upgrades.
How are their online reviews?
Arguably, the most important research is to find out what actual customers think. We all know that both happy and unhappy customers leave online reviews to help future customers of that business. Can we imagine making a purchase from an online store without looking at the star rating and ensuring that their customers are willing to publicly attest to and provide information about the experience? Please take a look at our A+ rating on the BBB, our 5-star rating on Houzz, and our 4.8 star rating on an independent review site including more than 180 reviews about Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Cleveland.
Do you like them?
This may be the most important test – the gut check test. Do you feel confident about their expertise? Do you want to have them in your yard? Do you like them? Regardless of reviews or any other information, don’t discount your own gut check.