by Luke Zmolik
So you’ve decided you’re not happy with the “exterior you”. After a lot of thought you’ve decided you want a more youthful appearance. Not settling for a simple Botox injection, brow lift, or removal of a few wrinkles, you decide to go for the full facelift. So away you go on your search for your perfect “Nip Tuck” surgeon. You walk into a fancy office with nice furnishings and decorations. You see nicely framed plaques and membership certificates, and his diploma on the wall. The plastic surgeon comes out, gives you a warm greeting, and welcomes you to his office. He makes you feel so warm and fuzzy; something in the manner of his speaking. He has been in business for some period of time so he must be good at what he does. So you say to yourself, “This must be my guy. Cut me up Doc!” ARE YOU NUTS?! There is no way you would trust just anyone with your facelift. And for good reason! You had better be putting your “Surgeon Scissorhands” through all kinds of vetting and scrutiny. Background checks, criminal history checks, nervous tic checks, palm reading, and a breathalyzers!
There are only two true ways to make sure your surgeon can do the job you expect.
- VISUAL INSPECTIONS OF PRIOR WORK
Now take the same philosophy you would use in choosing that perfect plastic surgeon into choosing the perfect remodeler. Here are some of the misconceptions far too many people are fooled into when choosing a good remodeler.
You found a remodeling company with a nice showroom. So what? Does that make you sold on the quality of his work? Yes a showroom does show that the remodeling company means business and intends to succeed, but that’s it. And how do you think that fancy showroom is paid for? OK, I dress nice and wear the most expensive fitted suits around. Am I now a good attorney? Check their work and their prices.
This remodeler has nice advertisements with credentials. Impressive! And his website looks nice with all these memberships, awards, and certificates. Does that make you want to use him for your home? Don’t trust it! Look. There are companies out there that are wonderful and they darn sure deserve the awards they get. But be leery. A lot of memberships can be purchased. And be wise enough to know that awards given by media and communities may be given because the remodeler knows the right people. Rub a few elbows, do a little horse trading, wink wink, nod nod! And “Walla”! A fancy new award!
Have you ever talked with someone and every word seemed to grab you? Words just flowed out…smooth as butter. Have you ever been verbally persuaded into doing something that you regretted later? All talk! Followed up by what? Disappointment! And then you don’t know who to be mad at more. The smooth talker whose overall performance came up short; or you for making that lousy decision. Don’t be fooled. Take the time. Do the homework. Ask for references and call them.
The number of years in business does speak well for a company. It does prove that the company has been profitable and will probably be around in the future if they are needed. But again, this is not the best way to be sure you are getting what you pay for. My company has been around for decades, but I would definitely expect any possible new clients and friends to check my references and see my work.
References and visually seeing prior work are key. If the remodeler is proud of his work he will find a way to show you some. If the remodeler has treated his clients well he most likely has become friends with them. Ask to go see work he has done in other’s homes. Most homeowners love to show off their improved house and would be happy to give you a tour. This is also a good way to make sure Ronald Remodeler didn’t give you his Aunt Sarah’s phone number, and how would you know if you were talking to Ronald Remodeler’s golf buddy? Request addresses. Ask your remodeler to set up appointments to view his work.
So whether you…..or your home is getting a facelift. Get those numbers. Make those calls. Ask questions. And don’t be afraid to ask to see prior work. Don’t put you….or your home through the agony of dealing with bad butchers?