How To Choose The Right Fence Contractor For Your Home
In one of his poems, Robert Frost famously said that “good fences make good neighbors”. There is a lot of truth to that statement. A fence helps define your space, separating your yard from the surrounding yards. It can also provide a degree of privacy, depending on the type of fence that you install. Being able to enjoy your yard without feeling like you are under the watchful eyes of your neighbors can make your outdoor space much more usable.
From a safety standpoint, fences are ideal for keeping young children or pets out of harm’s way. When your yard is properly fenced, you don’t have to worry about them wandering off or running out into the street, helping to ensure that they stay safe when they are playing outside.
Fences can also make your home more attractive while at the same time increasing its resale value. Most home buyers are drawn to houses that have attractive, professionally-installed fences, which could help you make a faster sale if you ever decide to put your home on the market in the future.
Installing a fence is a challenging, time-consuming task. Because of that, most people choose to hire a professional fence contractor rather than doing the work themselves. When you work with a professional, you generally will get much better results. Perhaps even more importantly, a qualified contractor will make sure you have all of the necessary permits in place before the project begins, ensuring that all of the work is done legally.
Choosing the right fence contractor is essential. Depending on the size of your yard and the fence style, you could wind up spending thousands of dollars on the project. It is important to know that your money is being spent wisely. Not all contractors are created equal. Some provide their customers with much better results than others. Below are some helpful tips on how to choose the right fence contractor for your home:
1. Get more than one estimate for the project.
With any major home-improvement project, it is important to get multiple estimates. If you simply hire the first company that you contact, you have no way of knowing whether or not their prices are fair. Most experts recommend getting quotes from at least three companies. That way, you can get a better sense of how much the project should actually cost.
A good fence contractor will send someone out to your property to provide you with an in-person estimate rather than giving you a generic estimate over the phone. Ask for an itemized list of the expenses rather than just the total amount. That way, you can see exactly where the money is going so that you can more accurately compare the quotes that you receive.
As a general rule of thumb, you should avoid working with any companies that provide quotes that are far lower than their competitors. Oftentimes, they are only able to offer such a low rate because they skimp on the quality of the materials. You will usually get better results if you choose a company that falls somewhere in the middle in terms of their pricing.
Don’t forget to ask about how payments are handled, as well. Typically, you will have to pay at least a portion of the money up front with the rest due upon completion. Always get everything in writing before work begins so that there are no misunderstandings at a later date.
2. Look for a company that offers a warranty or guarantee.
Anytime you spend a significant amount of money on a home-improvement project, it is important to make sure that the work is guaranteed. Any reputable fence contractor should be happy to stand behind the quality of their work. Additionally, make sure that the fencing materials themselves come with a warranty and that the company is willing to honor that warranty if any product defects become apparent after installation.
3. Check the company's portfolio.
Most fence contractors have photos of their work online. Try checking their website or their social media accounts for photos of their past projects. This will give you a better idea of the quality of work that the company provides.
4. Search for reviews.
One of the best ways to gauge whether or not a fence contractor provides high-quality work is by reading reviews from customers that they have worked with before. Thanks to the Internet, it is easier than ever to find customer reviews. All that you have to do is search for the name of the company along with the word “reviews”. This should bring up a list of websites with relevant reviews. If the name of the company is extremely common, you may also have to include your location in the search.
When reading through reviews, try to keep an open mind. Every company gets negative reviews at one point or another. Some customers have unrealistic expectations or are impossible to satisfy, even if the work is done correctly. If most of the reviews that a company has received are positive, you can probably ignore the negative ones. On the other hand, if there are more negative or neutral reviews than positive ones, it is definitely a red flag. In that case, it makes sense to look for a different company instead.
5. Look for a company that provides excellent customer service.
With any sizeable home-improvement project, good communication is essential. When you contact a fencing company, the person on the other end of the line should not only be friendly and courteous but they should also be able to answer any questions that you may have. Be wary of companies that provide generic answers or that make you wait around forever for a response.
These tips on how to choose the right fence contractor for your home should make the process of finding the right contractor easier. Even though finding a good contractor takes a little bit of time, it is worth the effort. Working with a skilled contractor can make a huge difference in the quality of the finished fence.