Don’t put up With Poor Service
Singer Neil Sedaka once crooned that breaking up is hard to do. Try breaking up with your contractor. Hurt feelings, broken contracts and the thought of spending extra money to get the job done makes ending a relationship with a provider awkward and emotionally draining. So, how do you know when it’s time to call it quits?
Instead of breaking up, you might be able to make up by discussing your concerns with the contractor. But if you’ve talked until you’re blue in the face and your contractor remains unresponsive, routinely runs late or violates your agreement, it might be time to cut your losses. Chances are, if you’re dealing with problems early on and throughout a project, you’re not going to be happy with the finished product. And the longer you wait, the more difficult it could be to move on.
Often, customers stick with a contractor they’re unhappy with because they’ve already invested significant money in the project; think it’s too difficult to find someone willing to finish another’s work; or are fearful of upsetting the contractor; or have concerns about breaking the contract.
Read and understand your contract before you sign it. Make sure it contains a termination clause, so if certain objectives aren’t met, you can break up easily. Of course, the goal is to find a good contractor in the first place so you never get to this point. What we’ve found is that the majority of our members’ experiences with their service provider are positive. It’s only natural. Most folks turn to the reviews on Angie’s List to find a good provider and when they have a good experience, they want to share it.
If you must start over, though, research your next contractor beforehand. Read reviews on Angie’s List; ask him or her about projects they’ve done similar to yours; have clearly defined goals and expectations spelled out in a signed contract by both you and the contractor; and document progress daily once the job begins.
Breaking up can be hard to do, but done smartly, it can save you a lot of heartache and headaches.
Angie Hicks, Angie’s List September 2011