Finding the best foundation repair company requires more investigation than choosing a company in the phone book. However, let it be a starting point. From there give these companies a thorough evaluation. Learn how to choose a foundation repair company by following this checklist.
Find out if the company is insured, licensed and bonded. A license proves to the consumer that the contractor has knowledge and experience in foundation repair. Insurance protects the company, contractor and consumer in case something goes wrong. Bonded companies will replace or repair any damage that occurs. Go to the city’s licensing board for credentials. Do not work with any contractor or company with outdated credentials.
On commercials and radio, companies often brag about how long the business was open. A company existing for 20 years shows longevity, trust and flexibility to change with the times. It’s hard to find a good reputation like that in a company that opened two years ago. Startups have a harder time making it than established companies.
Choose a company that offers versatile skill sets in foundation repair. This gives consumers an idea of the kind of machinery and equipment used and how current it is. It also shows the company can adapt and fix any kind of foundation repair problem.
Contracts are formal documents that outline services, materials, cost and labor needed to complete the task along with exclusions and limitations. The contractor and consumer sign the contract. Study the contract and sign it when you agree to the terms. Never sign if you don’t feel comfortable.
Check the references of the contractor through him/her or through the company. Contact those references and ask about their experience with the contractor and the company. You can also read online reviews. Companies or contractors who refuse to hand out references have something to hide.
Contractors must work around your schedule, not theirs. Do they work evenings and weekends? Will they wait until you have an off day? Is your comfortable letting them work while you’re at work?
The last thing you need to research is how comfortable you are around the contractor. The contractor needs to explain what is wrong, the course of action, time limit, cost and answers every question you have.
Trial & Error
Meet three to five companies in person. Invite them over and get an estimate. You will get a visual and emotional sense of how each company operates. Professional companies offer their entire investigation in detailed writing.
As you check the list, you’ll know every foundation repair contractor isn’t the same. However, knowing how to spot a reputable company is not enough. You need to know what to look for in a fraudulent company. Cross out companies and contractors immediately that offer anything on this list.
- Scare tactics: Do the contractor sell additional items instead of focusing on the task? Does the contractor pressure you to make a decision now?
- Lack of Respect: Do the contractor clean up the mess after the job is complete? Does the contractor refuse to leave until the work is complete? Does he complain about past customers?
- Random Stranger: Never allow any wannabe contractor off the street or a contractor wandering in the neighborhood to touch your foundation.
- Payment Plan: Frauds want the money in full first. At that point, the bad contractor leaves and you are stuck with a bad foundation and money stolen. Another payment plan swindle is a cash payment preference. If they only operate in cash or offer a discount for cash, they are operating under the table and not paying taxes.
This is your home. Don’t trust anyone to take care of it. Otherwise, it will cost a lot more to reverse the bad decision. For more information on foundation repair, contact us.