Image Can Be Everything

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In general, remodelers have to overcome an image problem. Unethical remodelers are one of the largest sources of complaints registered with the Better Business Bureau.

May 01, 2000

In general, remodelers have to overcome an image problem. Unethical remodelers are one of the largest sources of complaints registered with the Better Business Bureau. We’ve all seen the stories on television - an elderly woman loses her life savings to an unscrupulous remodeler out to remodel nothing but her bank account. Uncovering home improvement scams provide the media with great coverage.

The "bad" guys put good remodelers in the hot seat. But when you receive a call from your local news station or newspaper, you can prove to the public that this industry boasts professional, ethical remodelers. How? Tell the media how consumers can find them.

Here are some talking points when called upon by the media (and remember, you’re talking to consumers):

 

 

 

 

  • Investigate any remodeler’s reputation and experience.

     

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  • Seek referrals from friends, family, neighbors and coworkers who have had remodeling work done.

     

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  • Check with the local Remodelors Council or builders association for names of remodeler members. Membership in NAHB and the Remodelors Council indicates a remodeler’s commitment to professional customer service and quality construction.

     

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  • Check with your local or state consumer protection agency or Better Business Bureau to find out if any unresolved complaints have been filed against the remodeler.

     

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  • Check with the state licensing agency or local building inspectors to verify that the remodeler has the appropriate license (if required) and a clean record.

     

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  • Ask for a copy of the remodeler’s insurance certificates to verify that he or she carries insurance that protects you from claims arising from property damage or job site injuries.

     

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  • Try not to compare apples to oranges. When evaluating bids from contractors, make sure they are based on identical project specifications.

     

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  • Be wary of a contractor who asks for a full payment before the job has begun. A payment schedule should be part of your written agreement and may be tied to benchmarks such as completing various phases of the job.
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