How many times have you started a project without getting at least two other quotes from competitors? Probably not very often. Most people get at least three quotes from different contractors, but what if you found out that actually wasn’t the best way of choosing a builder?
If you’re thinking that goes against everything you’ve been told, you’re not alone. The majority of people use quotes to make their hiring decision. After all, who doesn’t want to get the best price, and what’s the harm in asking for an estimate?
It might surprise you to find out that the golden rule we’ve all lived by might have some exceptions. After reading this, you should better understand why getting multiple quotes from contractors isn’t always the best practice.
What’s Wrong with Comparing Based on Price?
Just as every contractor has their own way of building a deck, they each have their own way of quoting customers for work. Some are really detailed and break down all the costs. You might get to see which materials they use and how much time will be spent on each part. Others give you more of a general idea.
As a result, you end up comparing apples to oranges instead of apples to apples. Not only does this make it more difficult to see which contractor truly offers the better deal, but it also can leave you feeling confused and frustrated.
How to Get a Fair Comparison
If you end up with three entirely different quotes, you won’t get enough information to make a decision on price alone. However, there are a few ways that you can compare the quotes more fairly.
- Look at Materials: If a contractor’s price is only lower because they use cheap, poor-quality materials, they probably aren’t the better option.
- Consider the Design: The quotes for each project might be different because each contractor might have a different design in mind. You should make sure they are the same for a more accurate comparison.
- Ask About Building Methods: Some contractors use more thorough methods that require more time and materials. This higher-quality craftsmanship could explain a higher price.
Other Factors to Consider When Choosing a Contractor
Though the price of a job is a critical part of hiring a contractor, it isn’t the only factor that should influence your decision. You must look at the bigger picture in order to choose a contractor that best fits your needs.
It’s crucial to find a contractor with excellent customer service. They should be honest and upfront with you about their process and pricing, and it should be easy to communicate with them from start to finish. A contractor willing to go above and beyond for their clients is far better than a contractor who offers cheap prices.
You’ll also want to watch out for some customer service red flags as you compare your options. For example, if you struggle to get in touch with a contractor early on, it could be even worse when you try to contact them with questions. You should especially be wary of any “professionals” who won’t put things in writing or fail to provide a license or proof of insurance.
Reviews from Past Customers
It’s a good idea to look at reviews if you want to get a better idea of who the contractor is and how they treat their customers. It’s recommended that you find multiple reviews from different sources. Don’t just rely on the highlighted reviews on their website.
The Contractor’s Experience
It’s also essential to choose someone with experience. A professional who has years experience might cost more, but their knowledge adds greater value. Not to mention, experienced professionals can often work more efficiently without compromising on quality.
Information Found on Their Website
It might seem like a no-brainer, but you should take a look at websites when comparing contractors. Do they look professional? Do they answer all of your questions? You should be able to learn more about their process and pricing without digging too deep. Photos of past jobs can also help you make a decision. As an added bonus, a website can tell you about a company’s values and the way they do business.
Go Beyond Getting Multiple Quotes from Contractors
Are you looking for a contractor to build a deck or porch on your Northern Illinois or Southern Wisconsin home? If so, you’re in a great place! Decked Out Builders has 50 years of combined contracting experience. You can get honest and up-front with pricing, so while you shouldn’t rely on quotes alone, feel free to request one for your next project.
A friendly professional can provide you with more information on the cost of your project as well as building processes. You can also ask any questions you might have, so get in touch right away.