We like to call painting contractors the people with excellent coverage, because they cover your home with a weather-proof, durable and utilitarian surface that will last many years. Or so you hope. And when you investigate painting contractors websites, they all look like miracle workers, able to create a home that looks exactly like the one on the website.
But youve heard horror stories about house painting contractors whose work began to peel, bubble, and similarly wear off within a short time. How do you avoid being in one of these worst-case scenarios?
There are five basic questions you should ask painting contractorsindeed any contractorsbefore you enter into a contractual partnership.
Question one: Is this contractor certified, properly licensed and insured?
All painting contractors are required to be certified, licensed and insured, by the state where they work, as professionals who use the best practices in business. They should also have proof that they have specialized training in painting and coverage techniques, also required by the PDCA (Painting and Decorating Contractors of America).
Question two: Where can I find this contractor?
If you take a minute to visit the PCDA website, youll find numerous listings for excellent and recommended painting contractors. All of them hold the required certifications; all of them have specialized training in painting houses, trim, ducts, wood and metal surfaces and all those out of the way corners and cornices, the special problems of exterior and interior house painting. Youre looking for a painting contractor, by the way, who is in your town, preferably in your neighborhood, which brings us to the next big question.
Question three: Is this contractor located near you?
You will get huge and immediate savings if you engage a certified, professional and trusted contractor whos a mile or two away, as opposed to one 50 miles out of town. The latter is going to be both an expense and a headache; every trip he makes, with his equipment and painting supplies, ladders and hydraulic devices, will be a special trip that will cost you big money for fuel and maintenance of his vehicles. Sad to say, a contractor does not pay for his own gas to get somewhereyou do. The closer the painter happens to be, the greater the savings for you.
Question four: Will this contractor provide recommendations and references?
A true professional will have numerous preferences from his previous customers, and may even have a portfolio of the work hes done before. You should see immediately that this individual creates good and lasting work that he stands behind (the absolute acme of painters is the fellow who takes pictures of his work years later, just so you can judge the durability).
If you visit this painting contractors website, you should find numerous references and illustrations already in place. Contractors want to be sure they put their best work out there for all to see.
Question five: Whats his estimate?
This is his bottom line. No explanation needed here.
Keep these five questions handyand youre covered against being in any painting contractors horror stories.