Dealing with Contractors

Inevitably repairs are going to be needed on your home, that is just a fact of life, whether it is a dishwasher that fails or a roof that leaks you will likely have to deal with either a service person or a contractor. I hope this may help in dealing with those situations.

Some are Better than Others!  As in all things there are good ones and bad ones, Being knowledgeable is one of the first and best things you can do to make sure you are getting what you need and not getting what you do not! The second thing you can do is to have an independent third party check to see if what the contractor is saying has legitimacy.

One such example of a situation that came up a few years ago that may help you understand what can happen and how you can keep everyone honest went as thus.  We did a home inspection on a property, There was visible evidence that the AC system needed to be cleaned and serviced. The AC system was about 8 years old at the time and in overall good condition and functioning well within normal parameters. After closing the buyer called her usual AC company to preform the service. The Company proceeded to tell them that the system would need to be replaced to the tune of 11 thousand dollars! (an outrageous price btw). The Buyer called us and was furious as to why we did not tell them they needed a complete new AC system. Of course the reason why is that it did not need a full new system! We immediately went out to the property to see what evidence or reason they would have to substantiate the replacement instead of service, and found no reason for the replacement. However the buyer stated they were friends of theirs and trusted them completely and the replacement was scheduled for the following morning. I personally showed up at 830 AM to find that they had removed the majority of the components already however only a few of the original components remained on site, They had literally disassembled the system and removed the majority of components not only from the house but from the job site a well so they could not be inspected. The remaining components that were there were in pristine condition.

The point of this is that a contractor may not have your best interest at heart and just because someone wants to sell you a complete system, It may not be necessary. the fact of the matter is if you want to replace a system because of efficiency that is one thing, But if you want to be sure the system needs replacement, then you should have an indipendent third party evaluate the estimate and information from the contractor.

Ken Dolin