So you’re looking for a contractor to paint your home or business and you want to hire the best. You’re just not sure how to determine who that is. What steps should you take after the initial “painting company near me” Google search? How can you ensure you’ll end up with results that make you want to leave a 5-star review?
Hiring home improvement contractors can feel like a gamble but don’t worry. We’re going to tell you exactly what to look for and which questions to ask when searching for the perfect painter for your home or business. Just follow these simple steps and you’ll be in the care of a top painting pro in your area in no time.
Confirm They’re Licensed & Insured
This is an absolute must. A contractor operating without the proper licenses and insurance required for your area is not a contractor you want working on your property. It leaves you wide open to liability should anyone be injured and without recourse in the case of shoddy or damaging workmanship.
Requirements vary by state and city, so you’ll want to do some research on what is expected where you live. Our service area of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, for example, requires home improvement contractors to be registered with the state attorney general’s office and be properly insured. No occupational license is necessary for businesses that solely provide interior and exterior painting services but EPA certification in lead remediation is required for work performed on structures built before 1978.
It’s common practice for a company to display their license number on their website and advertisements. Most states also maintain a searchable registry on their government or attorney general’s website. It’s important to note that being properly registered isn’t equal to any kind of approval or endorsement by your state. But if a contractor you are considering doesn’t hold the required licenses, you should definitely reconsider working them.
Check Out Their Past Work
Interior and exterior painting is a straightforward, visual medium. Any contractor that’s confident in their services will want to show their past work to potential clients. Usually this means pictures of their work displayed throughout the business’s website, along with specific examples that have been turned into case studies, like you see here.
You’ll also want to check out a business’s reviews on sites like Google, Yelp, Thumbtack, and HomeAdvisor and check with friends and family about their own experiences, if possible. Requesting references from the business themselves is another good option, although this would typically occur after receiving an estimate, while the previous options can be done during your initial search.
Test Their Expertise
Don’t be afraid to ask questions that get specific. Things like what materials they use, how they prepare a surface for painting, whether they offer warranties on their work, and if they belong to any trade associations, will provide a more complete picture of a contractor’s approach and professionalism. Making sure a contractor uses quality materials and proper technique is an essential step in the process when you’re aiming to hire the best.
Do some research ahead of time on the specific types of services you are looking for and any challenges that may come with your job. Are you looking for interior or exterior painting? Is weather or humidity a concern? Is your home or business a historic property? Are there high elevations or landscaping to consider? Knowing what makes your project unique will help you prepare some questions to ensure the company you choose is up to its demands.
We know you’re eager to get your project underway and that can make it tempting to go with the first company that makes a good impression. But taking the extra time to get multiple quotes will be worth it for your own peace of mind. Without anything to compare it to you, it’s much harder to know if your first choice contractor’s quote is in line with industry standards. Obtaining a minimum of 3 estimates for any job will help you spot any obvious outliers and red flags.
Taking these steps before hiring a contractor may require a bit more of your time but, when you see the finished project, you’ll be glad you did. At Prestige Painting, we know exceptional results require extra care and attention. We also know they’re worth it.