When you think of “home maintenance” or “home improvement”, you don’t really think of gutters. When you visit someone’s home, you don’t look at their roof and say, “Wow, nice gutters you have there!” Gutters are a part of your home that tend to be left forgotten in the scheme of things. It is only when we experience issues that we come to realise the importance of maintaining our gutters.
Gutters bear the brunt of not just strong rain and heavy snowfall but also that of fallen leaves and other debris that might get caught up by the wind. When you need to have it checked out, here are some tips to help you get the best gutter specialists in your area.
Research – and do it well
When we say research, we don’t just mean the internet. While there are a lot of things you can uncover with just a press of a few buttons, nothing beats good old fashioned research. Talk to neighbours, family members, and friends and ask if they know anyone who does good gutter work. They might have already hired a company with gutter installation services that they can vouch for. Their personal experience with these people should help you make a decision. When you need to try someone new, go for a company from within the local vicinity. Because of their proximity to you, they are more likely to be committed. They are also very familiar with weather changes and terrain so you get a more personalised service!
Ask for estimates and quotes
Part of your research is knowing how much each company would charge you for their services. When you ask for estimates or quotes, the company should have already visited your home first and done some measurements. No reputable company will give you a quotation over the phone. If they do, see it as a red flag and walk away.
Do some background checking
Know who you are about to hire and check their credentials. They should be able to present to you proper permits, licenses and insurance documents if they are a legitimate company that is serious about their line of work. One particular information you should gather is their insurance. You need to ask if they have insurance covered because their job is quite risky and accidents may happen in your premises, whether it’s damage to your property or human injury. Knowing that they are insured is certainly a good thing for you — and a sign that maybe you should hire them.
Ask questions that matter
First time talking to a contractor? There are questions you should ask before you officially hire them:
- The type of gutters that match your home
- Ask their opinion about gutter guards. Would you need them?
- Gutters with colours or style that match your house
- If their team is insured
- Workers’ experience
- If they will provide all the tools and equipment
There might be other questions you want to ask, such as gutter materials. Go ahead and ask away. These companies are used to all sorts of questions so don’t hesitate.
Warranty and payment terms
Another factor you should consider is if their services come with a warranty. Companies provide warranty and will happily replace or repair their work within a certain time frame for free, provided that the damage wasn’t done on purpose. Payment terms are also an important aspect of choosing who to hire to do your gutters. If they offer easy payment terms then you might want to consider getting them if your budget is tight. Many companies ask for a bit of down payment first and then the balance at a later date, while others ask for full payment as soon as their work is done.
I’m thankful that you reminded us to ask for estimates and quotes once the gutter contractor has visited our home to do the measurements needed for the installation. I need to get my old gutter system replaced soon since it got badly damaged by the storm the other day and I want to avoid causing problems for my roof as much as possible. I’ll take note of what you said while I look for a gutter contractor to hire soon.