With over 120 thousand plumbing companies in the United States, you may think that hiring a plumber is as simple as picking up your phone and making a call. However, not all plumbers are reliable or trustworthy!
In the middle of a plumbing emergency, the last thing you want is to waste time looking for a reliable option! Even worse is a plumber who overcharges you for a poorly done job. Having a trustworthy and knowledgeable repairman on hand is crucial to saving time and your home.
If you’re unsure how to find the best plumbers for your needs, you’ll want to keep reading. You’ll learn everything you need to know to help you make a great choice from the start.
Ask for Referrals
Looking online for plumbers can yield hundreds of results, leaving you searching through dozens of pages. However, you can narrow your search by asking around for a recommendation!
Your friends, family, and neighbors all likely have a plumber they’re familiar with and recommend. Plus, asking people you know allows you to see the quality of work firsthand and ask questions about their professionalism.
Some plumbers also offer customers who refer new clients a discount. This means you and your friend can get a small percentage off your next appointment if you go with their plumber.
However, you can also ask your other repairmen if they have a recommendation. Your contractor or electrician likely works closely with plumbers, so they can help point you in the right direction.
This is also beneficial if you need your contractor’s help on a project that interferes with plumbing, the two professionals have already worked together. This relationship is essential to saving you time and money. You won’t have to wait for your contract to get in touch with someone they’ve never worked with before.
Check Online Reviews
One of the most helpful tools to take advantage of is online customer reviews. These provide unbiased feedback that speaks to the quality of work performed.
In many instances, customers will comment on the professionalism, promptness, and quality of the plumber or company. This includes customer service and whether or not the plumber was respectful.
Some reviewers will also post photos of the work, which allows you to see the quality firsthand. This is valuable and shouldn’t be taken for granted!
Beware of some online reviews that may be unhappy customers looking to tarnish a great company’s reputation. If the majority of reviews are positive, the plumber is likely very good at their job. A few negative reviews shouldn’t deter you from choosing a plumber.
Independent vs. Companies
Another factor you’ll want to consider when looking for the best option is whether they are an independent contractor or part of a company.
One of the main benefits of choosing a company over an individual plumber is that they have plenty of hands available to help. If you’re amid an emergency, they will likely have a plumber on call ready to come to the rescue.
However, this can be a downside as well! Choosing an individual plumber over a company allows you to build rapport with the professional. They will also be extremely familiar with the work they’ve done in your home, meaning they won’t have to spend time examining your plumbing system before remedying the issue.
It can also be beneficial to hire an individual, as this can help provide comfort as you’re familiar with the person inside of your home. For many, having a stranger in the house is an awkward experience, and calling a company means you could have a different professional every time you need work done.
Another thing you’ll want to consider when choosing a plumber is how much experience they have.
Generally, companies that have been around for a while are more established when it comes to their reputation, client base, and professionalism. This means they know the ins and outs of running a business, ensuring you have a smooth and pain-free experience.
This doesn’t only apply to experience within their trade. If their business is relatively new or inexperienced, they may have issues with scheduling, availability, customer service, and payment.
Though some younger businesses may be great, choosing an experienced and established company is a surefire way to ensure you receive the best quality of work for your home.
However, younger companies do have perks! Many plumbers just starting to have more opportunities in their schedule. This allows you to choose times that work for you, and as you establish yourself as a long-time client, they can prioritize you over new customers.
Ensure Licenses and Insurance
Another essential factor to consider when scouring the plumbing industry for the best option for your needs is whether or not they have their license and are insured.
Companies and individuals who aren’t licensed haven’t received the proper training to perform work. This means you run the risk of something going wrong, as they lack education and are not legally able to do work.
Similarly, if an individual or company is not insured, you’ll want to stay away. This can result in damage to your property that is left unpaid, as the company won’t have an insurance provider to file a claim with. This means you could be responsible to pay for damages caused by a plumber.
Most professionals will have this information readily available on their website or as soon as you inquire. If they are hesitant to provide the information about licensing and insurance, you’ll want to consider this a red flag and take them off your list of potential candidates.
Once you have a few companies or individuals that seem legitimate and trustworthy, you’ll want to set up a consultation or phone call to ask a few questions.
The best plumbing company or individual will be happy to answer any questions you may have about the job or their services. Consider inquiring about whether or not they have seen an issue like the one you’re facing, or if your current plumbing system faces any unique challenges.
Another crucial question to ask is what their hours of operation are. This helps give you a timeframe of when you can give them a call or expect an appointment.
This also allows you to assess their demeanor and whether or not they took the time to answer your questions in a professional and easy-to-understand way. After all, if your plumber talks to you like you’re stupid, they may not hesitate to overcharge you for services, as they’ll think you won’t know any better.
When choosing a plumber, the location of the business to your home plays a major factor. After all, when experiencing an emergency, you don’t want to wait hours for your plumber to show up because of distance and traffic!
Similarly, some plumbers only service towns within a certain radius of their location to avoid long days spent driving. Some may be willing to travel further, but it can cost you extra!
Finding residential plumbers in your area can save you and your plumber the hassle of a long commute when amid an emergency!
Consider Price Last
Though it’s important, when picking between a good quality plumber and one with less than stellar reviews, the smart homeowner won’t think about the cost first. A plumber that charges twenty-five dollars an hour knows his worth, while one that charges only fifteen may seem like a bargain, but realistically the quality of work will suffer.
However, once you’ve narrowed your list down to a few reputable choices, you should consider the cost of services! If you have two comparable plumbers to choose from, the difference in cost can be a deciding factor.
You should always ask for an estimate before deciding which plumber you want to go with, as this provides a clearer picture of the price of the project. Similarly, it’s helpful to know how they will charge you, whether that’s an hourly rate or a fixed price.
Finding the Best Plumbers, Made Simple
Finding the best plumbers may seem as simple as choosing the first one on the internet. However, doing your research can help ensure you hire the most professional expert in your area.
If this guide on finding professional plumbers has you ready to fix your plumbing issues, you’ll want to check out the rest of our website. There, you can find more of the best home improvement tips and tricks to help you perfect your property.