Whether you’re searching for a plumber to fix a leaky pipe or doing a complete kitchen remodel, finding and hiring the best professionals for the job can be a challenge. We’ve all heard enough horror stories of what happens when someone hires an unethical or unqualified contractor, so it’s perfectly natural to be wary. But doing a little homework before signing a contract can help you rest assured that you’ve hired the right home pro for your job. So how are homeowners finding good people these days?
Phone a Friend: Often times the best place to start is with who you know. Ask trusted friends, family members, neighbors and co-workers if they have a professional they can recommend. If they or someone else you know has recently had work done, ask them about the type of project, their experience and if they would hire that professional again. When it comes to your home, nothing beats personal referrals and their immediate responses will speak volumes! If you don’t know someone directly, consider scouting out your neighborhood for projects that appear to be running smoothly or asking other trusted home-related professionals and advisors for a recommendation. Additionally, you can turn to a prospective company’s website to see what types of reviews and testimonials they have online. Some companies even provide video reviews, which, by adding a face to the name and words, add credibility and a more personal touch.
Search Online Directories: Perhaps you received a recommendation, but still want to do some research on your own. Of course, a simple web search on the business name may bring up Google reviews and give you a sense of the company’s areas of focus. Search results may also include the Better Business Bureau website, which is a place where consumers can check if any complaints have been filed against the business. Another resource homeowners can look into is Yelp, a review-driven directory site that covers a wide range of categories. The site allows you to search by either the type of business you’re looking for or the actual name of the business, and will filter the results by your specified city or zip code.
Finding More Home-Related Reviews: Houzz, the leading online platform for home remodeling and design, allows users to browse and search a directory of home professionals in their area. The Find Local Pros tool allows you to filter by type of professional, along with geographic location to find what you’re looking for. Houzz profiles are fleshed out with reviews, photos, idea books and other useful information. Another source for reviews is Angie’s List, a website focused on home-related professionals and other service-based business. As Angie’s List does require a small membership fee to join the site, some believe members have a more vested interest in posting honest reviews. Each business receives a “grade” using an A-F scale and is evaluated on different criteria such as quality, service, and price. A little due diligence can go a long way in selecting the right home professional. Be cautious of choosing someone just because they offered the lowest bid – more often than not, you get what you pay for. If you have a potential project in mind, or need a recommendation for a home professional, please don’t hesitate to contact us.