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Choosing The Right Tile Contractor

So you've perused the catalogs, you've done the shopping and now you're ready to have your new flooring installed. The next step is to choose the right contractor for the job.

Sure, this is certainly not the “fun” part of the renovation process. “Hooray! It's time to select the perfect tile setter!” - said no one ever. But finding the appropriate contractor for your tile/flooring installation project is just as critical as your cosmetic decisions.

After all, this person will be responsible for turning your vision into a reality. Anybody can look at a blueprint; it takes a professional to carefully translate that blueprint from paper to project.

Here's a few tips to help you sift through the candidates who will be competing for your business. And remember that it is your business - any contractor would be privileged to have it.

Word of Mouth

In 2017, there is a preponderance of websites that claim to impartially review and grade the work of other companies. These domains allow customers to voice their criticism of the respective businesses that they've used for various jobs.

From home improvement, to landscapers to babysitters - you can find it all.

Although these websites are helpful when it comes to acquiring names, their reviews should not be blindly trusted or go uncorroborated.

On the surface, these Yelp-like websites only post comments authored by real customers. But this system is highly violable. It's fairly common, and lucrative, for businesses to pay for fake reviews so as to inflate their numbers and reputation.

A more trustworthy alternative to review websites is word of mouth advertising.

Ask friends/family if they've ever done a project that is similar to what you're considering. Find out who they employed and if they were pleased with their experience.

It is also valuable to see an example of each candidate's work - especially if it resembles your future project. Did they freelance or did they accurately produce the clients vision?

Take the appealing names and plug them into multiple review websites to double-check the information that you've received.

If the word of mouth review overlaps with the online reviews, you have a fairly coherent understanding of this contractor/business.

Never settle for the first option. Do not select a flooring installer before you've done this type of research.

Time is Money

There's no such thing as a free lunch, and new floors cost a whole lot more than lunch! So obviously you're gonna be spending a few bucks before your flooring project is completed.

Despite this universal truth, do not resign to spending up the wazoo here.

It's pivotal, going into the installer vetting process, that you know your budget. Also know that the contractor will have a “budget” as well - the amount of materials and labor necessary to see the job through.

A flooring setter is supposed to install your new floors by using a liberal amount of resources and labor - nothing more, nothing less. I say this, not to simplify or to devalue their efforts, but to reinforce the importance of frugal spending.

That goes for the customer and the business.

Once you've narrowed your candidates down to a solid handful, ask for estimates from each company. Be sure to thoroughly inspect these estimates for any superfluous jobs or materials.

If your flooring installer tells you that they'll need to build a moat around your house, in order to complete the project - you probably don't have the right person for the job.

If one estimate is significantly higher than the others, question why that is. Perhaps this is excessive spending, but it could also be that said estimate accounts for a detail that was previously overlooked.

Mistakes Will Happen

Now you have scrupulously vetted the candidates and you've gathered your estimates. You're on the verge of selecting who will ultimately be in charge of your flooring project.

One final consideration, before you choose which installer to go with: understand that something will (not might) go wrong. This is to be expected.

We're all humans - everyone makes mistakes.

But the only thing worse than a mishandled project is having to take out a second mortgage to correct the errors. New floors won't do you much good without a house!

Make sure that you leave a comfortable cushion between your budget and the estimated cost of the project. The general consensus is about 10% of your preconceived budget.

With that being said, you can never have too much overhead!

Measure Twice

Here at Maine Contractor Directory we want to equip you with the tools and information that you'll need to successfully complete your project.

Of course, the idea of flooring installation can be daunting. Having a contractor and laborers working in your home is sometimes unsettling.

You will literally not have a floor to stand on, for a short period of time!

But there are precautions that you can follow to see your blueprint through to fruition in a less stressful manner.

Like they say “measure twice cut once”.

It's your project - make sure that you're not just letting anyone work on it. If you follow the steps above, you'll be well on your way to find “your guy”.

Source: Jackson Kelly- Manchester, NH