Comparing Contractor Quotes: Apples to Oranges

Okay, so your property needs a little work. You’ve done your due diligence by collecting three quotes from contractors, but now what? You’re sifting through the quotes wondering how on earth you’re supposed to make an educated decision. Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Sometimes comparing contractor quotes can feel like comparing apples to apples. But if you know what to look for, you’ll definitely be able to tell the apples from the oranges.

Whether you’re hiring a power washing company, a painter, a landscaper, or a general contractor to completely remodel your home, you have a big decision to make! You’re inviting these individuals to come work on your property, so you want to be sure you hire the very best. Here’s what to look for…

Comparing Contractor Quotes

Are they insured?

You (and the contractor!) need to be protected. It’s vital to verify that your contractor is insured. Really insured. You’ll want to find out if they carry general liability insurance. Any contractor worth its sauce will be more than happy to provide you with a copy of their certificate if you request it. It’s total red flag if they don’t, and we’d suggest moving right along. Working with a contractor who isn’t properly insured is a huge risk for you, your property, and the contractor! Be mindful of the fact that some contractors will claim that they’re insured when in reality they simply have auto liability coverage on their vehicle.

What is (and isn’t) included in their quote?

Do your research here and be thorough. While some quotes may look more appealing right off the bat (hello, cheaper!) you may be getting fooled into a raw deal. Be mindful of the fact that some contractors know how to work the system; they’re completely aware that most people just look at the price.

But it’s crucial to note what is actually included in their quote. For instance, if you’re hiring a painter–does their quote include the paint? Are they using a brand that’s the same quality you would select if you were doing the job yourself? If you’re hiring a landscaper, pay attention to the type of plants they’re planning to use.

You don’t want to get nickel and dimed. It’s when you start to compare the details within the quotes that your decision will become more clear.

What’s their reputation?

That’s right, hit the Google machine up for some details! Find out what people are saying about the company and/or contractor. Be wary of just going off of the testimonials on their own website–the company and/or contractor controls what you see there.  

How long have they been in business? If they say 10 years but they don’t have a website or web presence at all, that’s a red flag. Are they willing to share references? Be aware of the validity of those references–if they’re trying to pass off their Aunt Peggy as a former customer, that’s not a great sign.

How’s their customer service?

Customer service is key when working with a contractor. Every person you know can probably share a contractor horror story with you (and they will, trust us). But the type of customer service they provide while they’re trying to win your business is very telling. If it takes three weeks and nine phone calls just to get a quote from a contractor, it’ll likely be pretty hard to get in touch with them if something goes wrong during your project.

Pay attention to their response time, their willingness to work with your schedule, and whether or not they’re willing to go the extra mile to satisfy a customer.

Now you’re armed with the information you need to ensure you hire the best contractor for your job!

Stumbled across this post? Great! We’re so glad you’ve stopped by! We’re Carolina Power Washing, and we provide Mecklenburg County, the greater Charlotte Metro area, and Fort Mill, SC with premier power washing, house washing, and gutter cleaning services! To learn more or to get a free quote, click here!