In times’ past, finding and hiring a professional local painting contractor in the Naples area was much easier. You would flip through a phone book and find 15 to 20 reliable painting services and contractors. Today, with the advent of the Internet, that number has jumped to more than 100. Finding such a person has gotten much more difficult for homeowners.
Where do you even start?
Many people are under the false assumption that they can paint just because they can pick up a paintbrush, roller, ladder and paint. The industry is riddled with people who think they can make quick money just because they can paint. When they go out to a job, they are often in way over their heads. They don’t have the right equipment or attitude for the task.
All this will do is leave a bad taste in a homeowner’s mouth – a bad experience that is then reflected on all painters (good and bad). A genuine professional painter is so much more than a paintbrush, roller, ladder and paint.
Of course, you can’t tell who is real and who isn’t by a listing online. After all, there are numerous “so-called” painters who have created a website and posted pictures of what they have allegedly done such as decorating for companies that lead one to believe that they are the painters responsible for such pictures.
All too often, homeowners don’t learn until it’s too late that the person they hired isn’t who they claim to be. It’s usually after the damage is done – paint splashed or dripped on furniture or missed sections – that the homeowner realizes the person they hired isn’t a professional.
On top of the sheer number of people claiming to be individual painters, there are multiple painting companies coming from South Carolina, Georgia, etc. It can be so difficult to find a genuine and professional painter and painting company that can take your painting task and turn it into a work of art.
Therefore, when you need a local painting service or contractor, it’s extremely important you know what you’re looking for from that person or service. When you don’t do your due diligence, you risk a loss in time and money and your sanity and trust in the industry.
4 Quick Ways Homeowners Can Know A Painter Isn’t Legit
How are homeowners including those living in Naples, Florida supposed to know how to find a professional painter when they are just too many unprofessional services out there? It starts by knowing what makes a terrible painter or painting company. Here are four things to consider before you hire a painter:
- You call to request an estimate, and they don’t return your call
- They won’t guarantee their work when a problem arises
- They take your deposit and never come back to do the job you started to pay them to do
- The job isn’t started on time and isn’t completed in the timeframe they quoted (or even finished)
What People Often Find When They Search For Local Naples Painters Online
Most people turn to the Internet for their source of information – to find who they need to do a job. However, this isn’t the best way to find a painter because they are too many listings to wade through. Of course, with this method, you do get a chance to check out their website, learn more about the person (company), and see what kind of work they allegedly did.
The majority of professional painters will have a section for client reviews or testimonials. These testimonials are actual client reviews of the person’s work. You can’t find these reviews on site such as Angie’s List, Home Advisory or other similar sites.
The problem with these types of sites is that they allow the business owner to pay for the featured business option with star ratings. Check out the reviews on these websites, and you could find that many are worded similarly to one another with keyword phrases included (this is to help the site come up higher in the search engine results).
You may even find that some of the reviews are posted on the same day. Sure, this could be a coincidence, but likely not. In most cases, it’s the business adding testimonials to the site. The more testimonials with exact keyword matching in them there are, the higher the chance the contractor isn’t who they claim to be.
This is where you must do your homework. Research is key, and is your best friend here! Numerous studies have shown that the business world has paid for fake online reviews all for the sake of gaining customer trust.
When you input a keyword phrase of “local painting contractors in Naples, Florida,” you’re liable to get a good number of results. While most people say stick to page one of the results, don’t overlook the benefits that page two and three can have. Still, whether it’s page one, two or even three, write down the list of painting contractors (companies) you were impressed with during your research. Don’t forget to include their contact information, including phone number and email.
6 Questions To Ask Prospective Painting Contractors In Naples
1. How Long Have You Been Working In The Industry?
The painting industry has a high turnover rate. One of your first questions to ask the painter is how much experience they have in the industry. Go with a painter with at least two years of experience.
2. Do You Have Employees or Subcontractors Working For You?
Ask if the people working for the painter are direct employees or subcontractors. Direct employees get a paycheck from the painter you hire who also takes care of them by holding both general liability and workers’ compensation insurance policies. A subcontractor will need their own insurance policy. Any contractor you consider should be able to give you a copy of their proof of insurance.
3. Are Your Licenses Current?
Has the state issued the painting contractor a license to work? Does this person have both workers’ compensation and general liability insurance? A licensed, dependable painting contractor will have these documents to protect themselves and those they hire to work on site. They will also make sure to have protection for you and your home.
4. Do You Have Any References?
Does the painting contractor have references you can call? It’s always good to get a good sense of a contractor’s work ethic before you hire them to do work for you. A previous “employer” is a good way to find out how the contractor did at that job. How long it took them to complete it? Was it done on time and the stated budget?
5. How Do You Prepare For The Job?
You want the painting contractor to give you a good idea of how they prepare for the work they do. Inexperienced painters will cut corners by not preparing for the job beforehand. A reputable contractor should tell you what must be done before they start the work and lay out what will need to be done and do it. The job preparation (or lack of one) will show in the end results.
6. What Kind Of Guarantees Do You Provide?
Most reputable painting contractors provide a guarantee or warranty of their work. They not only offer the guarantee on the products but the application and preparation process too. Make sure you get this in writing in case something does come up.
How Reputable Painters Prepare Your Quote
When you’ve narrowed down the list of contractors to three or four (or maybe you found the perfect one through reviews and word-of-mouth), then you need to create an itemized list of the painting project. What rooms do you want painted? Will the ceilings, baseboards and trim needing painting as well? What about the doors and frames – are they going to be painted?
Be sure you lay out all the details for the painter before they come into your home to give you an estimate of the project cost.
When the contractor or company comes to your home, they will do a quick walk through with you and go over the list you have given them. They will also let you know what repairs need to be made – holes or cracks in the walls along with other imperfections.
Good painting contractors can help you choose the right paint color and finishes, and let you know which brand is the best for your home. They will let you know what the costs are because the brand of paint you use will affect how much the cost will be for the whole job. Remember, one paint can may not be enough for your area, which means multiple paint cans are likely to be needed, which will increase the price too.
By now, you should have garnered a lot of information about each contractor to decide which Naples painter is right for your job. You should have an estimate, consultation and detailed explanation of how much work is involved.
Cost Shouldn’t Be Your Primary Deciding Factor
Homeowners know that home repairs and improvement is going to cost money, but it’s more important to focus on a painter’s experience and skills than on the money. A reputable contractor will be insured and licensed, and in most cases, that’s not what a person with the lowest bid will have.
Does this mean you need to hire a person with the highest bid? Absolutely not! The key is not to focus on just price. It’s not uncommon for homeowners to hire a person in college or unlicensed people to do work for them and it turns out great! Still, there is an adage to remember, “If the price seems too good to be true, it probably is.”
Yes, you want to save money but not at the expense of your biggest investment.
When you settle on the contractor (and their price), make sure to get a formal written contract. This contract needs to lay out the project scope, materials being used and the prep work involved. All this should be listed on a formal contract that includes the company heading and logo (if one). Never accept a quote that’s listed on a business card or piece of paper.
This contract should already include contingency issues. In cases where the painting contractor didn’t consider everything or just wanted to secure the job, it’s not uncommon for the contractor to ask for more money from the homeowner than what they originally quoted.
4 Questions To Ask Yourself Before Hiring A Painter
Before you decide who to award your job to, there are four questions to ask yourself:
- Who came across as the most knowledgeable and experienced in the industry? Do they know what they were talking about?
- Which painter (or company) made you feel at ease – not just in communication – but bringing them into your home and work around your family and belongings?
- Who came across as the most respectful and explained what your painting project needs were?
- Which painter listened to your questions and answered them with great detail? Which one gave you the best rundown of the painting process?
After you ask yourself these questions and have vetted the different Naples area painters, you get a better sense of who the industry professionals are. They may not be the cheapest, and they may not be the fastest, but these are the guys who know what it takes to be a professional house painter.
Always get a written contract that lays out the details of the project – including cost, labor, materials, time frame and more. You want to hold the contractor accountable if something doesn’t go according to the contract and you’re not happy with the work that’s been done.
When it comes to choosing a professional for any kind of home improvement project, you want to apply the tips you learn to find the right one for your home. After all, your home is your domain and your investment!
It’s important to get a minimum of three bids, asking all of them the same questions and telling them what you expect. After you’ve gotten the bids, you can look over the proposals to see if they share similar qualities such as prep work, work scope, materials and documentation. Never go with the lowest bid just because it’s the lowest. While a painter may be bidding low for good reasons, it could be a representation of their inability to understand the job scope.
Need a Local Painting Contractor?
Call Best Way Painting
To ensure you are receiving the quality painting you deserve, make sure that you are choosing a professional with years of experience to prove it. Get in touch with Best Way Painting today to see how we can help you!