Competitive Estimates: How Do You Go About Getting Them
Competitive estimates are possible, thank goodness for the internet. Homeowners can now go to search up painting contractors. You have time on your hands where you can research up what you assume are the best painting company around the city that you live in.
When you are ready to paint the interior of your home or stain the exterior of your home’s siding, how do you get different painting companies to give you an apples-to-apples estimate?
We all have seen the varying estimates that can come in. One is so vague you have no clue what they are even going to do. It could look like this:
EXAMPLE #1: Caulk home. Powerwash home. Apply 2 coats of stain to home. Clean up at the end of the day. $3,200
EXAMPLE #2: Powerwash home & deck. Hand scrape all loosing & flaking paint. Caulk as needed. Apply 2 coats of Sherwin Williams Super satin paint to the following areas: metal flashing, exterior doors & frames. Apply 2 coats of Sherwin Williams oil-semi-transparent stain to the following areas: eaves & fascia, canopy, siding, corner boards
Obviously, Example #1 is NOT what you want. It is too vague and doesn’t show exactly which part of the home they staining. Doesn’t itemize the product being used either. A good estimate/contract will specify:
- the preparation of the house prior to application of paint or stain.
- then it should move on to the number of coats & list the product being applied and to which areas of the home.
- finally, it should have the do/do nots at the bottom of the contract clearly stating:
- what is included
- what is not included
- how many colors the estimate includes;
- how long the price is good for.
- lastly, it should state the payment terms
Another great way to compare two companies and two estimates is to compare the person who is coming out to give you that estimate. When they are in your home for the interior painting quote, they should be able to tell you how long they’ve worked for that company if they are the owner or not, and they should be able to answer any question that you might have about the application. Some companies hire out strictly salesmen, who are just interested in “closing the job” with no real concern about the job itself after the sale is done. If you have a list of questions prepared prior to these companies coming out and you ask both men who arrive the same questions, you should compare their answers. Which one do you feel gave you an honest answer, had the most knowledge, been in the business the longest, and most importantly, that you would feel comfortable in your home.
So the next time you are ready to get an estimate to have your home painted, do your due diligence. Have questions ready to ask both companies. Compare those notes to get the competitive estimates to make sure they are both giving you a very specific contract. After all, it is a contract. Make sure you know what you are signing and make sure you know who you are letting into your home.
I hope you found this helpful. You may also find my post on hiring a contractor helpful. Click here for my post on Hiring a Contractor – Tips & Checklist to Hire the Right Person for your Home.
Brenda and I love over the past 30+ years making your home a place you want to come home to at the end of a long day.
Don’t forget, if you need an estimate on on any of your home projects, give me a call. My team and I have been serving the Plainfield, Naperville, Lisle, Shorewood, Joliet, Oswego, Yorkville, and all of the Chicago area for 30+ years.