17 Questions (Explained) For Hiring A Plumber
If you find yourself in need of a plumber, the situation is usually urgent. Maybe you're a first-time homeowner dealing with your first burst pipe. Or maybe this isn't your first rodeo, but you don't have an on-call plumber and your toilets are overflowing! It can be overwhelming to choose one when your kitchen is full of water or your toilets won't flush - especially if you aren't sure what questions to ask or what you should be looking for in an on-call specialist for all your household plumbing needs.
If a plumber has a business card or website, many of these questions may already be answered for you. But if they aren't, don't be afraid to ask. It's your home, it's your money, and you deserve quality service. Any professional should gladly answer these and any other questions you may have:
- Are you licensed? It's not always required by law for a plumber to have a license, but we definitely recommend that you hire a plumber with one.
- Are you bonded? If a plumber is bonded, that means that they have purchased a surety bond. This protects you if the plumber doesn't get the necessary permits, doesn't complete the work properly, or causes damage to your property.
- Do you have proof of insurance? If the plumber doesn't have insurance or won't show proof, don't hire them! A contractor should have no problem showing you proof of insurance. They should have Liability insurance and Worker's Compensation Insurance.
- Are you registered as a tradesperson, or are you an employee with a larger company? If you found the plumber's number on the internet then you probably already know the answer to this question, but sometimes it isn't clear. Always make sure you know who is working for you and who they work for.
- How long have you been in the plumbing business? It's usually more desirable to hire a plumber with more experience, but that's ultimately up to you. Either way you decide to go, it's best to know how many years' experience a plumber has before making a decision.
- Is your rate hourly or fixed? Don't shy away from the topic of pay. You don't want a nasty surprise after the work is completed.
- How much will my project cost — and what's included? Again, don't shy away from this topic! Your plumber should give you an estimate, and it should include an approximate cost of any parts they might need and labor.
- Who will be doing the work? Plumbers may do the work themselves, but they often have an apprentice or other crew with them. You'll want to know what to expect when the work begins, and that includes who will be in your home.
- What is your availability? As mentioned before, we often don't call a plumber until the situation is urgent. It's good to know your plumber's hours of availability. It's also a good idea to find out what the best way is to reach them. Some might have a central office that you call, while others don't mind if you text their cell phone.
- Do you have any references? You may already have references, but if you don't, the plumber should have some readily available. You can also check them out on review sites, Google, or even social media.
Questions to Ask Yourself
What do the online reviews say? We touched on this before, but online reviews can be a good source of information. Just keep in mind that not all reviews are honest and fair; take everything you read with a grain of salt, and look for multiple sources.
What does the website tell you? If the plumber has a website, it could have much of the information covered above already listed for you. Take the time (if you have it) to browse the website and see if any of your questions are answered there.
Are they polite on the phone? This should go without saying, but if they aren't polite on the phone it's probably a pretty good indicator of how they do business overall. Even if they are busy and must call you back, they should at least extend the common courtesy of being polite to a potential client.
Can I get a referral from someone I know personally? It's a great idea to ask your friends and family if they know a plumber that they can recommend, or if they've worked with (or heard of) the plumber you've chosen. It'll give you peace of mind to know that someone you trust has previously worked with this contractor, and you can't put a price on that!
If you're in the market for a plumber for your Cherokee Village, Hardy, Highland, Ash Flat, Horseshoe Bend, Salem home or in the surrounding areas, feel free to give us a call or stop by our office! We can help you find one to suit your needs!