How To Research A Painter
There are many ways to research a painter or a painting company before you hire someone for your next job, and many of them are online. First off, you want to make sure that the company is reputable. How do you check that? Any company that has been in business for some time now has some dirt online about them. Hopefully for them, it’s good dirt! Look for customer feedback on online blogs about painters in your area. There are plenty of sites that are devoted to helping the public get real time information before hiring someone.
Today, word of mouth is instantaneous. If someone does a bad job, it is very hard to hide it. That’s why today is, in some ways, the best time in history to get the quality that you want and deserve out of a local painting contractor. For any reputable company, there is a lot riding on the line (no pun intended) for how they are rated by their customers.
If someone gets a bad online rating, they have to respond to it. Maybe there is a crazy customer in every batch of 100; however, if the negative comments keep coming, that will be a red flag for any discerning customer to steer clear. That’s why today’s contractors will do almost anything to keep you happy–if they have a reputation to protect. If not, then they really don’t have a reason to really care. For this reason, we recommend that you only use a company that has a reputation. Otherwise, you are shooting darts in the dark. You may get lucky, but is the gain really worth the risk?
You can also look offline by calling your local Better Business Bureau. The BBB keeps track of customer complaints and can, in essence, flag a company for a poor customer rating. Now, truly, with the advent of the internet, the BBB is getting less and less relevant. You can now just go online and see for yourself what people are saying. However, it can be an added tool for you to use to weed out the professionals from those who are just trying to make a buck at your expense.
Another way to do your research is by asking questions. Are you licensed? Are you insured? Is everyone on the job licensed? Can you provide me with documentation? Do you have any references? How about before and after pictures? Do you use a low VOC paint for your jobs?
These questions are important, not just for the answers, but also to see how your potential future contractor reacts. Do they get nervous? Do they try to brush off your questions and tell you that they’re not really important? You can get a lot of information beyond what you say you’re looking for, just by asking.