Strategies to Finding a Good Painting Contractor
Painting is one of the more popular home improvement strategies. It is especially helpful when you’re trying to sell your house. A fresh coat of paint alone can significantly improve the appearance of the home which can go a long way in increasing its sale price.
A professional painting job will instantly improve the house.
The challenge, as you would guess, lies in getting the right painting contractor. How do you pick the best for your project?
Step 1: Outline the details of the job
Start by outlining your goals. What do you want done? Are you looking to paint both the interiors and exteriors? Some residential painting contractors are better at one but not both.
Then, go into the details such as colour (do you have a specific colour combination in mind?), possible obstacles (such as dry wall repairs), and the time frame (how soon do you want the job completed?).
Address these issues at the onset to lessen headaches once the project starts.
Step 2: Shortlist about five candidates
How do you find these candidates?
- Through referrals
There is nothing better than working with a contractor that you trust.
An easy way to find one is get referrals from your close friends and family. Ask one who had his house painted recently and how well Why not find out how well that contractor performed.
Another group to ask was real real estate agents and the guy at your local hardware shop. Gather three to five referrals and pick the best from that lot.
- Through online search
If you can’t find referrals, take your search online. The internet is full of residential painting contractors looking for their next project. With the stiff competition, you’re sure to find better prices from these online contractors.
There are two options here. First, you can go to Google and search for “residential painting contractor + (your city). In other words, if you live in Melbourne, search for “residential painting contractor Melbourne.” Several results will show up. Your job is to pick the best from that list.
The other option is to use social media and forums to find the right contractors. On Facebook, for example, when you search “residential painting contractor Melbourne,” multiple results will also show up. Browse through a couple and check the Comments section before making your shortlist.
The same applies to forums–Yelp and Yellow Pages being the best examples. On Yelp, you’ll find thousands of reviews. Look at the general consensus and pick the best contractor from your area.
- Offline tactics
Lastly, you should also check magazines and newspapers to see local contractors ads. Radio and TV are the other options.
When you hear or see an ad about a local painting contractor, shortlist them and then conduct your own research whether or not they’re suitable for the job.
Step 3: Compare each contractors on your shortlist
This is a critical step. Get the right contractor and you’ll end up getting exactly what you want. But get it wrong, you would end up regretting that decision for a long time.
To help you, here are four key areas you need to keep an eye on:
- Legal licensing
Make no mistake about it, there are hundreds of contractors working without a license. This is not only a criminal offense but also a red flag when assessing a contractor.
Licenses are only given to those who have demonstrated knowledge and understanding of the field. These are given to protect both you and the contractor.
If the job is done poorly, you may want to file a complaint. But this is only possible if the contractor is licensed. Unlicensed contractors would not be held liable for anything! They can do a bad job and get away with it. So if you want to make sure that you can hold your contractor to a job that is sub-par, get a licensed contractor.
Contractors who have been in the job longer have better problem solving skills. Their early mistakes serve as pointers to doing a good job and surpass any incoming challenge.
Typically, the greater the experience, the better. But anything over 10 years is acceptable.
But you should not only look at the company’s experience. Take time to assess the individuals assigned to your project.
Price is always a factor. No one wants to pay thousands of dollars for a paint job unless it’s a really big house.
Instead of looking at figures, consider getting value for money. The best contractors don’t come for cheap, but they’re among the best in the industry and are reliable.
A solid coat of paint applied by an experienced professional can last for many years. This is better than the repaint jobs that would happen in case you get a cheap contractor.
Finally, it’s good to find a residential painting contractor that can back their services with a guarantee. The longer the guarantee, the better. If the contractor doesn’t offer guarantees, just avoid them altogether.
Step 4: Hire the best contractor
Having interviewed and compared the different contractors on your shortlist, go ahead and make a decision. Hire the best candidate and let the job begin!