I recently decided to explore the idea of having a contractor do some work on my own personal home. Specifically, I was interested in having a patio and some retaining walls built in my back yard. As someone who has worked in the remodeling and construction business for over 18 years you would think I would have had no problem making a decision on who to contract for the work. Well, to be honest, it was a very difficult task and one that required me to reflect on what it must be like for a prospective client looking for a contractor to do work on their own home.
The initial hurdles were determining the right design and putting something on paper that could be affordable to build. My initial estimates were very close to what I was hearing from prospective contractors who I had scoped out for the work. The next hurdle was selecting the contractor to do the work.
I met with some very talented and experienced patio and wall installers who had been referred to me by other people or who I had sought out myself from doing some general searching on websites and through trade associations. I ran through my own mind all the things that were important to me in who would be doing this work- fair price; ability to meet my schedule; quality of work and overall professionalism. Then it struck me that all these companies had these qualities. Stuck in the back of my mind after all the reviewing of estimates, designs, referrals and insurance paperwork was the fact that I was going to require the work be done by the person I felt I could trust the most.
So, after conducting my research – including checking references; seeing examples of their work and following up with consumer advocacy groups like the Better Business Bureau, Chamber of Commerce and Angie’s List – I narrowed my pool of choices down to two. I had one last meeting with each contractor and asked them why I should trust them to do this project.
Contractor “A” replied with statements about their experience, the great price they were giving me and the fact they were a large company with plenty of manpower to get the job done. This all made me feel very good but not necessarily any more trusting in this company.
When I met with Contractor “B” and asked the same question, the response was straight forward- “I’ve been in business for almost ten years and, in that time, I’ve built my reputation with lots of very satisfied clients. I will not tell you that every project went off without a hitch or that there has never been a minor delay but I always kept the client abreast of what was going on and, in the end, I always made it right. I will not tarnish my reputation that I’ve worked so hard to build by doing one client wrong.” My search had ended. This contractor realized the importance a little personal reassurance and communication would have in keeping me happy as a client.
That is why I enjoy working for a company like Foster Remodeling Solutions. There is no project worth sacrificing 28 years of satisfied clients and stellar reputation to cut corners or do less than what we said we would do. Every happy client is a referral to the next prospect and no matter what experience, manpower or cost a company can provide nothing can replace the feeling of trust in the contractor you choose- Trust to do the right thing and do it well every time.
If you would like to talk about ideas for remodeling or renovating your home in Fairfax, Mclean, Springfield, Woodbridge, Alexandria, Arlington, and Falls Church VA, reach out to us at Foster Remodeling. Call now for a free consultation!
by Dave Guy, Architectural Designer