The snow is gone, the sun is shining and spring is in the air. This is the time of year when you can see the flowers starting to bloom, the grass growing and the trees coming to bud. It’s also the time of year when we think about “spring cleaning” - getting the yard tidied up, and seeing what repairs might be needed in the coming year.
Some areas to think about are:
- Lawn care and yard maintenance –grass mowing, lawn fertilizing, weed control, hedge trimming, tree pruning, general yard maintenance.
- Painting – exterior trim, entire house, fence, interior rooms.
- Roof – reroofing or repairing the existing roof.
- General repairs – exterior or interior of house, deck, fence.
- Moving – relocating, downsizing, someone coming to live with you.
When lives are hectic, having the added task of getting the yard work or the house repairs done, or getting ready to move, can seem daunting. Fitting in time to get the work done yourself may be challenging, or at times impossible. If you are looking after your place as well as your parents’ or neighbours’, it can be completely overwhelming.
If hiring a professional is an option that works for you, following certain guidelines could save you headaches, time, and money in the long run.
Unfortunately, hiring a professional can also take some work, but once the right contractor is found, you can relax knowing the work will be done and it’s one less worry.
Priority Time Errand and Concierge Services can help you find the right contractor. We will do the research for you so you can make an informed decision before hiring the professional that is best for your needs. Whether we do the research for you, or you take it on yourself, the following guidelines should make your decision-making easier.
- Talk to friends and neighbours. There’s nothing better than a referral from someone you know. Talking to friends or coworkers about companies they have used and getting an honest opinion about what they liked or didn’t like can be invaluable information. Approach neighbours who have regular lawn care done or if you’ve seen a painting or roofing company truck in front of their place. Ask them if they would recommend that contractor to their close friends or family.
- Another good place to start is with the Better Business Bureau. If the contractor is accredited with the BBB, they will have a report that gives them a rating from A+ to F, depending on how long they’ve been in business, whether there have been any complaints against them and how much information the BBB has on the company. Even if the company is not accredited with the BBB, the BBB may list them and indicate the number of complaints issued against them in the previous three years.
- If the company has a website, read any testimonials they have posted. This could provide more information such as the company provided a detailed estimate, stayed within the quote provided, worked in a timely fashion, and the employees were friendly and helpful. Some testimonials may leave a name, and contact information. If so, call the person to follow up directly to see if they can give a more candid description of the services and what they liked or disliked.
- Once you’ve narrowed down the possible candidates to three or four, get a fee estimate in writing. The estimate should be given at no extra cost and the company should contact with you within a day or two of the request to arrange an appointment. The contractor should visit your home to assess the work required to be done, preferably while you are there to ensure they are getting all the information they need.
- Check the estimates against each other, for price, detail of the work done, the products to be used, length of time for completion and their guarantee policy. The cheapest quote is not necessarily the one you should go with, depending on what is involved in their work and how much lower they are than the others. If the pricing seems out of line, there is a reason for it. It may be that the work will be substandard and that will just create more problems down the road.
- Check references, contacting them by phone to get a personal testimonial, and if agreed to, visiting their home to see the work done in person.
- Ensure the company is licensed and insured. You don’t want to be liable for any injuries to the contractor’s employees while they are on your premises. Request their business license number and WCB #, both of which can be checked.
Getting the most information possible before hiring a contractor will greatly increase the chances of an excellent result with little or no stress involved in the process. Making an informed decision reduces the stress involved in hiring the right contractor for you so you can make your home ready for the arrival of Spring and be proud of how it looks all year long.
Priority Time Errand & Concierge Services can help you make that informed decision. We will research possible contractors for you, and do the legwork of getting the estimates, reference checks and confirmations of insurance. For repairs and projects around your house, we can recommend our handyman (a preferred service provider who we’ve already done the research on).
Our goal is to listen and understand your unique needs, and work with you to provide customized solutions that work for you. We make your time our priority because we know how valuable time is to you. You can take time for yourself, get out with your friends or family and relax, knowing that we are taking care of you this season.
Call Priority Time Errand and Concierge Services today for a free, no-obligation consultation, at your home or a location of your choice.
Priority Time Errand and Concierge Services
1389 Vista Heights, Victoria, BC V8T 2J2
Office: 250-590-3001 Website: www.prioritytime.ca