The Important Questions You Should Ask to Get the Best Service and Value
There’s nothing more challenging than figuring out whether a home repair service can live up to their promises. Reading one thing on a company’s website – and seeing another when the company works on your home – is the equivalent of being told you’ve been gifted a Lamborghini while a jalopy is pulling up in your driveway.
You can get a far better sense of the quality of a company’s service by asking them key questions in advance. Then, the company won’t be able to rely on marketing. They’ll have to answer your questions honestly, and you’ll know who you can rely on – and whose services you should pass up.
While this is true of any kind of home repair, it is extremely important when dealing with home foundation repair companies. Why? Because the foundation of your home is perhaps its most important structural element. Your foundation is what the rest of your home rests on, so your investment and care for this structure is essential.
With that in mind, here are the two essential questions you should ask every home foundation repair company to get a sense of which business will help you protect the home you’ve worked so hard to own, and which businesses you should stay away from.
- Does the Company Offer a Free Estimate or Quote?
Home foundation repair jobs are extremely nuanced. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution for home repair, so you should rely on a company that wants to take a careful look with a trained eye before diving in. An excellent company will want to do a thorough inspection of your home, and will tailor a solution that is customized to your particular needs. Additionally, the company should do this for free. An excellent company will want to educate you on what they’re seeing, what their diagnosis is, and what solution they might use to take care of any issues. They’ll do this for free, purely because it’s the right thing to do.
There are ethics at work in home repair, and one of the ethical standards in play goes something like this: “Don’t charge anyone to tell them what’s wrong.” Why? Because then the customer feels like they’re being pressured to use the company. After all, the homeowner has already invested in them with a paid-for estimate. Additionally, a company can use that power to gain even more leverage. They’ll often use the tactic of fear. Businesses like this often play up the worst-case scenario because they have the customer’s attention, given that they’ve already swiped the homeowner’s credit card once for an inspection. This is just wrong.
An exceptional home foundation repair company understands that it is not a fair playing field – and it is not good business – to put a customer back on their heels. You’ll know you’re working with a great company if they give you a fair, balanced, thoughtful estimate that seeks to educate you, not frighten you into working with them.
- Are You a Locally-Owned Company with Expertise in Our Area’s Climate and Home-Building Techniques?
While this question is more of a mouthful, we hope you’ll see why it’s so essential – and one of the two questions we recommend asking right away.
Homes are different all over the United States. In fact, you might have noticed that there can be highly-specific regional differences in how they are built. Those differences certainly extend to the foundation of your home. You will want to work with a home foundation repair company that understands how homes are built in your area, and has experience working on those homes’ foundations. Ideally, a company will enter your home, offer a free inspection, and state, “We’ve seen this before – and it’s common among homes in this area” – or something to that effect. You want to feel confident that the business you’re working with has experience with your particular situation because they’ve dedicated themselves to your region.
It’s also important to remember that climates are different in specific locales. From weather to soil conditions, the U.S. is known for its variety in regard to climate. This is important to note for foundation repair as well. The amount of rain, snow, cold and hot weather your area receives affects your foundation – these elements affect the soil which serves as a kind of “second foundation.” In short, the soil is packed up against your house to keep your foundation as firm and strong as possible. If that soil moves or shifts because of the climate you live in, that, in turn, can affect your foundation’s condition. Therefore, you’ll also want to be sure the company you work with is highly-knowledgeable about the climate in your area.
Too many companies are corporate entities with franchises throughout the country. This means that the foundation repair technicians who work for that business are being trained nationally, not regionally, and perhaps without consideration of the specific structural and environmental knowledge that a local company has. Local companies know the region. They’ve gained vast amounts of experience in the region. The last thing you want is a company that’s more dedicated to a corporation’s bottom line than taking care of the highly-nuanced needs of homes where you live.
How to Find the Right Foundation Repair Company: A Recap
Be sure to ask the two questions above, and you won’t go wrong with a home foundation repair company. Remember: a free estimate is not only a nice perk, but it’s a practice that lets you know how trustworthy a business really is. Further, stick with a locally-owned business. They know the area, and have local foundation and climate experience to back up their findings. Ready to ask these questions today? Head to your favorite search engine, and search for the following phrase: “foundation repair near you.” That will pull up a list of foundation repair businesses in your area. Then, all you have to do is ask the right questions.