WHAT QUESTIONS SHOULD A COMPETENT CONTRACTOR BE ASKING YOU?
December 1, 2023
There are many foundation repair contractors in and around Edmonton. It’s easy to do a Google search and find any number of companies that could potentially address your problem. When you have so many options, how can you make the right choice?
Needless to say, you’d want someone honest and trustworthy that cares about your home and knows foundation repair inside and out. Time is valuable, so why waste it with someone trying to sell you something you don’t need or a shortcut to get the job done cheap instead of doing it right?
Why should I care what the estimator asks?
The simple answer is the right questions signal a contractor’s interest in serving you first over making a commission or selling “their product”.
Pay attention to their interest in hearing the history of issues with your home and how concerned they are with what bothers you most. At the same time, they should be asking you lots of probing questions too. The sign of a great contractor is one who provides a solution to your problem within realistic expectations and budget.
Given the importance of being able to determine if your potential foundation repair specialist has the right stuff, we have put together some of the questions you should expect a Shield Foundation Repair estimator to ask.
How soon are you hoping to have the work completed?
If you haven’t already made it clear that you have a timeline in mind, this needs to be asked as soon as possible. It’s important to discuss when you want work to start and if it needs to be completed right away.
If you have a deadline, the contractor needs to know this to assess if they can realistically deliver. For example, we are often called when a customer is either selling their home or purchasing a new one.
Most reputable contractors are booked weeks, or even months in advance, so they might not be able to get to work as soon as you’d hoped. Be wary of a company that can start right away, especially during the middle of the summer. Sometimes a contract falls through and they can fit you in, but this is the exception, not the rule.
What are the problems and concerns you have with your home?
Everyone has different levels of tolerance for problems around their home. Your foundation repair contractor should know what your primary concerns are so that they can address them in their job proposal.
Are the problems newer or have they been there for a long time?
Noticing a foundation issue doesn’t necessarily mean there’s a huge problem. Seasons change and cracks can open and close. If you haven’t been living in your home for a long time, you might not know if this is a seasonal shift or an ongoing issue.
Knowing how long a problem has been observed and how/when it changes can give the estimator clues as to what is going on and how concerned you should be about it.
Sometimes it might be best to wait and see before rushing into repairs. A contractor that encourages you to hold off and offers reasons to do so is likely more interested in what’s best for you over “closing a sale.”
Is there something you recently saw that made you feel the need to contact us?
Sometimes underlying problems remain undetected until a sudden change occurs that catches your eye.
Knowing what that event was can give a foundation repair contractor key information as to what is happening and recommend the best way to proceed. This is where years of experience of a seasoned contractor like Shield Foundation Repair comes into play.
How concerned are you with the issues that you are seeing?
This question that can determine what sense of urgency you are feeling. Foundation issues are typically not emergencies. However, if the contractor senses you are genuinely concerned, they should be very attentive to the situation at hand. While they are experts in their field, only a homeowner truly knows his home.
Beware of alarmist foundation repair estimators. While dire situations are always possible (and you will have a good sense of that), a contractor that urges you to sign a deal right away should raise some eyebrows.
That said, an obvious, major concern should be addressed more quickly to return your home to the stability it needs.
Have you recently remodeled your home or are you considering a renovation soon?
A foundation repair contractor should want to know what has recently been done to the home and be interested in your plans. Having this information can impact their recommendations. For example, a newly renovated home could be affected by raising and leveling, causing significant damage to freshly refinished features.
A plan to renovate soon will also help the contractor focus on your perspective and account for everything that you have in mind. A foundation repair plan should take into consideration the plans you have for your home.
A prospective contractor won’t know your home’s history or plans unless they discuss it with you. A completely different repair solution might need to be considered if a renovation is in your plans.
What’s the most important thing we can do to take care of you and your home?
Every foundation issue and every customer have different needs. Knowing what your top priorities are will ensure a contractor relationship built on trust and communication by meeting your expectations.
This could have to do with the process, cost, timing, or any other special considerations on your mind. A contractor who wants to make sure they can meet your standards and truly address your needs is working for you. As it should be.
Here, Todd discusses some of the things you need to be aware of when choosing a foundation repair contractor.
Do you have concerns with your foundation? Call our friendly, knowledgeable Shield Foundation Repair team today at 780 760 4900 to set up a meeting.