Google the company, do they have a website or other social media that expresses who they are as a company? Are they personable and present themselves professionally? Search their Oregon CCB number for clean records and current licensing. Call references and read reviews if any are online. Does the general contractor have subs and vendors they use on a regular basis ? Can the company solve your home improvement needs by creating innovative ideas without blowing the budget?
Hire the expert-
Would you pay a mechanic to work on your computer even if the mechanic says he has worked on computers before? Probably not. It only makes sense to hire a contractor who specializes in the area you are looking to repair or remodel. Sure anybody may build a spectacular fence for you but not likely as efficient as a specific fencing company. So investigate the companies expertise, products and vendors before signing a contract.
Be cautious signing the lowest quote-
Sure the price looks great compared to the other three companies but why? Is the contractor and all the trades on the job licensed, bonded and insured? Will the service during the project meet your expectations? How will any warranty work be handled? How does the company perform and manage the project? Does the contract or proposal appear detailed, clear and concise? Are the products going to be high quality with superior craftsmanship? Check out this home owners story below who almost went with the cheaper guy.
A home owner in West Linn received two quotes to build a fence. An “all trade company” quoted $1000 less for a fence than a “specialty fence company”. This home owner called the fence company and said sorry we are going with the cheaper guy he is $1000 less than your price. The fence guy asked what material is the cheaper guy using. Client said “Pine” why? Fence guy educated the client about the use of pine in the NW and how it does not hold up in our weather. He described the importance of Cedar’s longevity in the weather and explained that it costs a bit more but will last much longer and cost you less in the long run.Needless to say the company who quoted the better materials and higher price built the fence. Always understand what you are getting with the quoted price.