Are you thinking about hiring a house painting service to paint your home’s interior or exterior? When you choose a house painting service, you want to make sure you’re hiring a company that can deliver the best quality and service possible. Painting projects can become expensive and are meant to be long lasting; you’ll want excellent results from a well vetted professional.
So, how do you determine whether or not a painter is qualified? To help you decide, here are seven things factors to consider when hiring a house painting service:
- Good Reviews on an Unbiased Site
One of the first things you should do is check reviews from previous customers. While many companies display testimonials on their own page, it’s important to keep in mind that those reviews come with an inherent bias. Companies pick only the most flattering reviews to share.
For unbiased opinions, check Google or Yelp reviews. There are sites that offer reviews specifically for home improvement services that can be a good resource as well. Keep in mind that every business is sure to have some negative reviews. One or two unsatisfied customers does not mean you should rule the company out. When you see a bad review, consider these points:
- Do multiple bad reviews refer to the same problem?
- How long ago was the negative review written?
- How the business reply to the review in an effort to make things better?
There is a lot more to painting your home than applying coats of paint to a surface. Most often repairs are needed, as is prepping and sanding the surface. These can be messy steps but are necessary if you are to achieve a lasting finish. Ask your painter how your home or garden will be protected from the effect of sanding and scraping surfaces. Do the painters clean up at the end of each day? What do you know about the painters in your home? Have they passed background checks? Do they smoke? What happens when there is inclement weather?
Getting the right answers to these questions means that you are likely talking to a house painting service that is concerned about the quality of the job along with protecting you and your home; a company that makes customer service a priority.
- Credentials and Affiliations
Credentials and affiliations with professional associations indicate that a house painting service is established, trustworthy, and knowledgeable. They show that the business is invested in providing quality work and abiding by a certain standard and code of ethics.
Some businesses are of course trustworthy without these credentials and affiliations, but seeing the certifications displayed on a website or paperwork can be reassuring.
Keep an eye out for an affiliation with the Painting Contractors Association (PCA). The PCA requires that contractors uphold licensing and insurance requirements, provide quality work, and protect your home.
- Insurance and Licenses
Depending on the state in which you live, different insurance and licensing requirements will apply.
A trustworthy house painting service should have a general liability policy that will cover damages and bodily injury. If you hire a service that is uninsured, and there is damage done to your property, you may be saddled with the repair costs.
To ensure that the house painters will provide quality work, you should also check for a contractor’s license. Again, depending on the state, licensing requirements will vary. Do some research to find out what is required in your state and ask about licensing when you contact the house painter.
Also, consider your home’s specific needs. There may be additional certifications required depending on your situation. For instance, house painters in Wellesley, MA should ideally have the proper qualifications to handle lead paint, because so many houses in Wellesley are historic. Lead paint needs to be handled in a particular way to meet the EPA’s safety standards.
- Guarantees and Warranties
A guarantee is an important promise of quality from your house painter. Of course, we all want the job done correctly the first time, but even the best professionals can make mistakes. To protect yourself in case of an error or miscommunication, look for a house painting service that offers a guarantee. Guarantees give you peace of mind that you are hiring someone who will stand behind the work that is done.
A warranty should cover both labor and materials for a period of years. A three-year warranty is considered standard. Make sure any guarantees and warranties the company offers is clearly stated in the contract before signing.
- Commitment to Communication
There’s nothing worse than a team of contractors who are unwilling to communicate with a house owner. Make sure to work with a team that is available to you and values frequent and open communication from the very first call, throughout the entire process and after the project is completed.
If you’re feeling uncomfortable with any aspect of your project, your painter to be available for any changes or questions you might have. On larger projects, there may be prescribed check-in points along the way. Again, online reviews can help here. Look for comments pertaining to communication and read through the company’s website to find out about their specific communication policy. If not stated on the site, ask.
Before you commit to one company, it’s important to get a few estimates. Multiple estimates will give you a general idea of how well your house painting project will fit with your budget and will give some context as to what a fair price should be.
Each home and each project is unique, so few if any painters will be able to give you an estimate without coming to your property. Be skeptical of a service that offers a flat rate. Ideally, someone from the company will come to your home and do a thorough walkthrough before offering a detailed estimate that includes the number of hours or days the work will take to complete repairs, the prep work and paint application; how many coats of primer and paint will be applied; the materials needed and any specific requests that you make.
House painting projects can be costly, and the results have a significant impact on the appearance of your home. It’s important that you don’t reach an agreement with a house painting service before doing a fair amount of research. Don’t rush! Invest time and effort into finding a good team and you will likely be much happier with the results!