- First ask the contractor for all of the names of the principles of the company including but not limited to, the owner, operation manager, and sales persons. A company should be more than happy to provide this information to you.
- Ask for the most recent referrals of projects completed by the contractor.
- Check out the contractor at the, “CSLB”
- Check out a contractor’s license number.
- Perform a name search request.
- Then go to the LA BBB and perform a company name search and read the reviews.
- Go to Yelp, type in the company’s name and location, and read the reviews
- All of these links are provided by Trabuco Air at (‘Trabuco Air.com”) click on (“check our ratings”) tab.
- The contractor is the only (“wild”) card that makes the difference, point blank?
- The longer a company has been in business the better the chance that they won’t go out of business before your company warranty runs out.
- The longer a company has been in business the more they have to lose if they shut their doors.
- The longer a company has been in business, the more actuate their reviews and ratings are.
- Does the company have a shop?
- If the company has a shop, they could be over burden with overhead, and may fail due to the current economy.
- If the owner(s) have recently changed or the principles have recently changed, you may need to scrutinize this company more than an company which has had long term principles, (“KEY PEOPLE”) running the company.
- Key principles refer to, but not limited operations manager, general manager, sales manager, the installation foreman, the tech foreman, and so on.
- You may run into some very shady contractors and not even know it.
- This is very important and the most time should be spent on this evaluation, as the “KEY” employees make up the backbone of the company.
- What do we recommend for you to ask?
- How long have the key principles been with the company?
- What is the key principles experience?
- How did they get into this business?
- How well do they know the field in the trenches?
- Did they ever work as a technician and for how long?
- Did they ever work as an installer?
- Did they ever own their HVAC Company before and if so, then why do they no longer own their company?
- Do they still have a contractors (“LICENSE”)? If so, then why are they not using their license anymore?
- Did they have complaints on their own license?
- That is or was their license number, then check the license number at (“CSLB”)?
- Did their company get sold, file for bankruptcy, and have complaints on their license?
- This is how you can protect yourself before hiring a contractor.
- Ask for all of “full” names of the “KEY” employees, first, last and middle.
- Verify these names are accurate by comparing their name on their driver’s license.
- Do not feel intimidated to ask for this, any good company would have no problem with this.
- Then go to “CSLB” and perform a name request search.
- Play around with the names until you get a hit.
- Only look for names of key personal in Orange County.
- This will help you to narrow down the names.
- If the owner is running the company in the back ground and having other personal run interference for them?
- How would you talk with the owner if the personal running interference cannot or will not resolve your problem(s)?
- Who wants to have to file a complaint with the (“CSLB”) and wait six months to get the problem resolved?
Does the company have a shop?
In the past if a company had a shop, this was a sign of a more stable and reliable company.
This may not be true anymore.
Many companies which have bloated overhead may be at risk at going under due to the current economic situations environment.
The costs to run a company are up and the profit is down.
Due to that profits on the downturn, many companies with bloated overhead “may” either have to sell at a higher price or take shortcuts to remain profitable.
If a company is unable to keep their profit margins up, they may run the risk of going under.
Usually the bigger the company, the higher the overhead, and the more risk.
Even a big box store may not be a sure bet, most use sub-contractors and these sub-contractors have to honor the labor warranties, not the big box stores.
The company that you chose may more important than any time in the past.
- The longer the employees have work at the same company, the more skilled they may be, more satisfied, paid well, and care more about their.
- If a company has employees that have been there a short time, less than one or two years, they may not be skilled enough to stay with one employer, and may be what is known as (“TRANSIENT”) employees
- Were the employees trained in house or do they have bad habits LEARNED FROM past companies?
- Do the employee’s smokes, drink, do drugs, steal, and criminal backgrounds?
- Does the company use sub-contractors?
- a company which uses sub-contractors may have less control over in house employees
- Did you know the big box stores use sub-contractor?
- Did you know the big box stores do not provide the labor warranties?
- Any company can have an A+ rating with the BBB.
- When a company joins the BBB and has no complaints with the BBB.
- The BBB almost always automatically give the companies an A+ rating.
- Do not trust review on Insider pages, city search, and super pages.
- Most of these reviews are generated from service magic.
- Service magic seems to only publish positive reviews from their network of contractors.
- We recommend the BBB AND Angie’s List as the best source for reviews.
- Is the company open seven days of the week?
- Do they offer readily after hours and holiday service at no extra charge and for warranty work?
- If you need a warranty, its 5:01 p.m. and you call the company; will your get an answer or answering service, and Have to wait until Monday to get a return call?
- Will they put warranty work first before new clients, or will they make you wait for two, three, days or more before they come out for a warranty call?
- This is what is known as after the fact service.
- As you can now see the company is more important than ever.