10 Things you need to know before you hire an eavestrough company!
#1 How long has the eavestrough company been in business?
You don’t want to hire a company that has just started out and you are the guiney pig for them to make mistakes. Eavestrough require a skill-set and attention to detail to ensure that last decades to come. Ask the company how long they’ve been in business. Hire someone with no less than 5+ years of serving clients. More importantly, go online once you get the answer to ensure that they have been around that long. The internet will give you all the info you need to understand a companies reputation and work ethic. People are very quick to let you know how they did, especially if that installation was subpar.
2. Are they a local company?
Local businesses are not going anywhere. The owners and workers tend to take more pride in the work they do and it can be seen all over the town or city they reside in. Their name and reputation is important as their name is tied to the company. Establishing themselves in the community they service helps stimulate business and maintain a competitive edge. When you hire a local business this ensures you will have great customer service and someone around to honour your warranty or guarantees for years to come.
#3 Is the company fully insured with liability insurance and in good standing with WSIB?
It is important to to make sure that the company you choose to hire is fully insured with the proper amount of liability and property damage insurance. Most importantly they also need registered with WSIB (Workers Safety & Insurance Board). Installing eavestrough systems and related products does carry an element of risk so make sure that you are protected. Making sure that the company you choose for eavestrough/exterior services is fully and properly insured, is one step to making sure that you will be involved with a legal and professional company.
#4 Does the company specialize in eavestrough?
Look for a company that specializes in the eavestrough industry and not a roofing company that is just trying to make some extra money. This will ensure that you will get the quality and workmanship that you deserve. Do the company install hand mitered corners rather than cheaper and less reliable boxed corners. They is really important to ask as it will reduce future leaks on your property. Very often a company that focuses on just one area of the home improvement industry will be able to provide a more specialized service and superior quality so that you don’t get a band-aid solution that needs to be fixed again the next year. It only makes sense that a company who specializes in eavestrough systems will be able to give a superior job due to specialized equipment and training. Be careful of companies offering a variety of services when choosing your eavestrough service company. It makes a big difference for you home.
# 5 Do they sub-contract out their work to other companies?
You want to have the company that you hire be the company that installs the work. It is a challenge to manage the quality of an outside company. They may not follow the safety and quality procedures that the company you hired does. They may not have the same warranty and reputation of installers. The company you choose to hire often does not ensure that sub-contractors they hire is following the same installation standards as they would. This results in the home owner /property owner may not be receive the quality and service that they deserve. Sub-contractors are usually required to arrive at the job in unmarked vehicles or slap on a temporary magnetic sign to their vehicles. Be wary of unmarked vehicles arriving to your property to complete your eavestrough services. You may be left disappointed!
#6 Does the eavestrough company have a great reputation with supporting reviews?
The eavestrough company you hire should be able to provide you with a list of references upon your request. These references should not only is names and telephone numbers, but they should also be able to show you some of their previous work. You should be able to go online and find 50+ reviews supporting they work. The internet is your friend to ensure that you don’t hire a fly-by-night company that isn’t going to give you the quality and customer service you deserve. Be sure that the company you choose offers a strong workmanship warranty. Many companies advertise that they have a warranty, but be sure that it is a workmanship warranty and not just a manufacturer’s warranty. A lot of companies also may have a workmanship warranty but it may be a very weak one. Choose a company that is so confident in the skills of their professional eavestrough installers to give a quality job that is problem free for decades to come. You want a company that returns your phone call even after they’ve been paid!
#7 Does the company use quality eavestrough materials?
Unless you are an eavestough expert (in which case you would have probably done the job yourself) you wont’ know the difference between quality and bargain basement materials. Be sure that the company you hire is using quality eavestrough materials. Some companies who value saving a few dollars over providing high quality work, will resort to using thin gauge eavestrough and small downspouts. These thin gauge materials are on the market to supply the very competitive new housing market with cheap materials where quality work is not always important. If you want your eavestoughs to last upwards of 20 years than materials are important. You may get a cheaper estimate but the work won’t last!
#8 How does the company pay their installers?
Many eavestough companies out there pay their installers by the foot rather than by hour. This means their installers are make more money the quicker they work on your home. If they can complete 5 homes in a day then they have a bigger paycheck. Obviously this can negatively affect the quality and workmanship you get. You may get a cheaper quote but how long will your eavestrough function properly?
#9 Do they provide professional estimates and invoices?
Many companies will provide the estimate on a piece of paper or worse just verbal. They make up the price on the spot based on the car that you drive in hopes to get the most money out of you. A reputable company will provide a line item estimate which breaks down the products (eavestrough price, gutter guard price). You should be able to find out what they charge a linear foot so you can know that you aren’t being overcharged compared to the next person. The company you choose should definitely provide you with these important documents. On each of these documents you should ensure that all company information not hand written, it should be professionally printed onto the forms. All professional and legal companies will ensure to have these items for you.
#10 Do they provide you with a detailed estimate that gives you full overview of the work to be performed?
You want to make sure that work that you agree to is the work that is performed. A reputable company will give you an overview of the planned work such as: Removal and installation of eavestrough, downspouts and gutter guard. Current colour, white.
Bonus Question! -What size of gutters do they install?
Back in the day most homes came with standard gutter sizes. In today’s marketplace there are many different styles of roofs and consequently different types and sizes of gutters. You want to ensure to ask the option on types and sizes. If you live in a location with heavy rains, a steel roof or a commercial property then it is likely you have may require a higher capacity gutter system. Make sure your contractor has the expertise and materials.