It really does pay to ask a few pertinent questions before agreeing to a quote from any contractor. Below are seven questions we would ask, if we were you. Don’t be shy – these are queries that any reputable contractor should be more than happy to answer!

1. How much Public Liability insurance do you carry?

If your contractor doesn’t have any, clearly they are not showing much concern about accidentally burning your building down or causing smashed windows. But we do…

We have $1,000,000 cover, for your peace of mind.

2. What was your last Public Liability claim?

If the contractor says they haven’t had one, it is likely that they are either new or are attempting to side-step the issue and avoid responsibility.

Our last claim cost us $280, and we don’t think we even caused it. However, integrity and reputation are far more important to us than dollars.

3. Can I please have a copy of your Health and Safety policy?

If the answer is “no”, run! A contractor without a commitment to health and safety is probably also without commitment to identifying or managing potential hazards. This means a higher risk of damage to people or your property.

4. Who will actually be working on our property?

The person who gives you a quote may look credible and professional, but he or she might not be the person who turns up to do the work. Once the quote is approved, someone entirely different might be sent to your property – and this could be someone of dubious character. So, do ask to meet any staff before approving the quote.

5. What happens if I’m not happy with the job? Will you come back and re-do it until I am happy?

Now watch the body language and eyes of the contractor for the real answer.

6. How long have you been doing this type of work? What qualifications do you have?

There really is no substitute for experience. If a business has been going, say, ten years or longer, it’s far more likely than a new business to still be there if you have a warranty issue … and remember, a newly trained person is more likely to make mistakes or cause damage than a person with years of experience.

7. Can you name several local properties of the same size where you have recently completed a job or are currently working on, that I can drive past?

This is a “biggie”, as it confirms the contractor is local and established. And, when you drive past, you can probably tell immediately whether their workmanship is up to a good standard. So, it stands to reason that any trustworthy contractor should be pleased for you to see their work.

We will be happy to answer any questions you have ; just click on “contact” and Lincoln will organise a free, no-obligation visit to your property.


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