We’ve all had to do it and we probably feared it. Hiring a stranger to come over to your home to fix your plumbing or washing machine or clean your carpet can be a stressful situation. Nobody wants a stranger in their home. Who is it? Will it do a good job? Is it honest? These are just some of the questions that may run through your mind before, during, and after the experience.
I have been in business since 1989 and have gone to thousands of homes as an outsider to do my job, so I feel qualified to help you do it with a minimum of stress and worry. The following is a list of things that will allow you to make the experience as painless as possible.
- First: Get a referral From a trusted friend, someone whose judgment you respect. If the company is employee-based, try to get a recommendation from someone who has used the company multiple times. More on that in number three.
- Second: Hire local business. Look for businesses whose addresses are close to home. Yellow pages ads often include addresses. Do internet searches that include your city, such as Oceanside Plumbing Companies, Carlsbad Carpet Cleaning, etc. Include your city, that way the closest ones will appear first in the search results. When you hire someone close to you, your travel time and expenses are reduced. They save money and can pass some of that to you. Ask if they will give you a local discount. I have always been willing and others should too. You won’t know until you ask.
- Third: Hire a company that is Owner operated. That means the owner comes to your house and does the work. Who will do a better job? The owner whose name and reputation goes to work or an employee who works for salary and has been working for the company, who knows how long? Perhaps you are even unhappy with your job or your salary. The point is, you know a lot less about an employee than you do about the business owner who has a lot more skin in the game. Also in the first reason I mentioned to get a referral from someone who has used the same company multiple times, hopefully for years. The reason is, if you are sending employees, there is no way to know if you are receiving the same person that your friend has. That employee may no longer be with the company. So it can be difficult to relate their experience to what you will get. With an owner-operated business, you always get the owner. Usually this will lead to a better experience.
There is more to say, but the limitations of space and attention span tell me to stop now. The second part will cover what to say when you call, what to look for on websites and yellow page ads, and more.