Hiring a plumber is admittedly not an easy job. It involves taking potential clients through a vetting process to find the ones best suited for the job. There are general tips you can follow to make sure you ask the right questions to ask when hiring a plumber.
Before we get to the questions, here are a few tips you can follow when considering whether to hire a plumber or not
- You should only hire a licensed plumber. Most states in the United States require plumbers to obtain licensing before they can practice.
- Only work with plumbers who are insured and can deliver proof of it.
- Ask about the plumber’s experience. The more experience he or she has, or the more years he or she has been practicing in the industry, the better.
- A plumber should be able to give you an estimate only after he or she has analyzed your plumbing situation. The estimates should be accurate and should include a contingency charge for unforeseen circumstances. That way the plumber doesn’t have to charge you extra later on.
- Ask about any warranties included in the contract in case something goes wrong after the project is complete.
- Ask the plumber for references from customers he or she has worked with before they start. Then go over them thoroughly before you agree to work with the plumber.
Those are general tips to consider before hiring a plumber. Meanwhile, here are some important questions you should be asking a prospective hire.
Do You Have an Estimate?
You should be very careful about this one. If the plumber gives you an estimate over the phone before even evaluating the plumbing situation, then you should be suspicious. A legitimate plumber will want to check out your problem beforehand. Then analyze it before giving you any estimates to ensure that the numbers are accurate.
He or she will likely also include guarantees and costs of needed parts within the estimate. You should also be sure to ask if both labor and materials are included in the estimate.
Will You Be Hiring Anyone to Do the Job?
In case the plumber is going to be hiring subcontractors, you should ask to know about their experience and credentials. It doesn’t help that the plumber you hire has glowing credentials and a wealth of experience if he or she hires amateurs to do the job.
Are You Licensed?
If licensing is a requirement for a plumber in your state, and it is in many states, then your plumber should present proof that he or she is licensed. Even so, you should be considerate of newly licensed plumbers. The plumber you choose may not have the experience of older ones, but he or she might be more affordable.
Are You Bonded and Insured?
The plumber should be ready to give you evidence that he or she is insured and bonded. The whole point here is that you are not held responsible in case the plumber (or anyone he or she hires) is injured while working on your project. It is your right to find out.
Do You Charge a Flat Rate or an Hourly Rate?
Find this out before hiring the plumber so that you can avoid exceeding your budget. If the plumber charges an hourly rate, then he or she should tell you exactly how long it will take. Ideally, the plumber should be experienced if he or she charges an hourly rate. Then they can tell how long it takes to finish the job in question.