Prevent Trouble: Choose a Contractor Wisely

People who need work done on their home exteriors can prevent headaches and heartbreak by checking out contractors carefully before hiring one.

Justin Martin, president of Martin Exteriors, 11704 Main St., Roscoe, says there are several ways to be certain you’re making a good choice. Martin Exteriors specializes in roofing and siding in northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin.

“If you do your homework before hiring a contractor, you may see potential issues and avoid becoming a victim,” he says.

When using Google to find a contractor, look for the Google Guaranteed badge. a green circle with a white check mark, which means a business has passed a screening and qualification process.
Next, read the company’s reviews.

“Google is a great place to read reviews about your potential contractor,” says Martin. “You can see what previous customers have to say about them, good or bad.”

Also check with the Better Business Bureau to make sure a contractor is accredited and has a good rating. In part this means they’ve made a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints.

It’s important to verify that a contractor is licensed and insured. In Illinois, check with the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR). Verify a contractor’s certificates of insurance to ensure that a company has liability and workers’ compensation insurance and that it’s current.

“Make sure your contractor is credentialed by the manufacturer of the products they install. In roofing, most shingles now come with a lifetime warranty, but without the backing of a manufacturer’s credential, that doesn’t mean much.”

He adds, “Martin Exteriors holds the highest-level credentials with Certainteed as a Select ShingleMaster Roofing Contractor and 5-Star Siding Contractor. We’re also a Mastic Elite Siding Contractor.”

Last but not least, make sure you get a written contract that spells out what work is going to be done and what’s expected from each party. A contract is required in Illinois for all projects over $1,000, says Martin.
“If you take these steps to protect yourself, it will give you peace of mind to make the right choice.” ❚