Buying replacement windows and having them installed by a team of experienced professionals allows you to enjoy the many benefits such a substantial investment can provide, including better energy efficiency and improved home aesthetics. But as you sift through the many window installation companies in your area, you have to be on the lookout for not just the reputable contractors but also for those who exhibit certain red flags, which are discussed in detail below.
Lack of References or Reviews
The most dependable window replacement contractors will willingly provide references from prior customers who were satisfied with their work. If a contractor seems hesitant to share references or their references have negative experiences, this is a substantial red flag. Checking reviews online on platforms like Google or specialized websites or asking for references from past clients offers greater insight into the contractor’s performance.
They’re Not Licensed or Insured
In most regions, window contractors must be licensed to perform the job legally. If a contractor cannot produce valid licensing documentation, it’s a huge red flag.
Similarly, insurance is a necessity. Insurance protects you from liability for any accidents or injuries on your property during the window replacement. If the contractor doesn’t have proper insurance, you may be responsible for accidents on your property.
No Direct Line of Communication
While this might not be an obvious red flag, trustworthy window installation contractors value customer service and maintain open lines of communication. If the contractor you’re talking to is not timely with their responses, is dismissive, or doesn’t answer your questions thoroughly and clearly, it may be an early warning of potential issues. Consistent communication prevents misunderstandings, ensures the project stays on time, and allows your concerns to be addressed promptly.
Seemingly Too-Good-To-Be-True Cost Estimates
A well-established window replacement contractor will not provide unrealistically low estimates. Although tempting, incredibly low-cost estimates are often used by inexperienced or disreputable contractors to win jobs.
Getting the work done for a price significantly below the market standard could mean that the contractor intends to use substandard materials or provide a subpar level of service. Sure, everyone wants to save money — but when it comes to your home’s safety and longevity, it’s worth paying for quality.
High-Pressure Sales Tactics
Respectable window manufacturers and installation companies would never use hard-sell tactics to secure your business. If a window contractor uses high-pressure techniques, such as claiming a deal is limited-time or won’t be available tomorrow, it’s generally best to steer clear. Reputable contractors understand that replacing windows is a significant investment, and homeowners need time to think and make informed decisions.
Incomplete or Vague Contracts
A written contract is essential in determining the expectations of both parties. It should specify the cost, timeline, and details about the type of windows being replaced.
If the contract presented by the contractor is missing information, incomplete, vague or they refuse to provide one entirely—avoid them. A legitimate contractor will have no issue providing a complete contract that protects both parties.
Insistence on Cash Payments
Alarm bells should ring if the contractor demands full payment for the project upfront. It’s normal for a contractor to ask for a deposit. However, full payment should not be made until the job is completed and you are satisfied with the work. If a window replacement contractor insists on full payment before starting the job, it can indicate possible fraud.
Inadequate Knowledge About Windows
Competent window installation companies typically know the various types, materials, and energy efficiency considerations of windows and be able to guide you accordingly. If the contractor appears confused, stumbles over your queries, or cannot provide clear explanations about concepts related to window replacements, it might be an indication of their incompetence. Remember, a good contractor isn’t just hired for their physical labor but for their expertise and ability to offer the best solutions for your specific needs.
Absence of a Physical Location
A reliable contractor will have an established physical location. An absence of a physical business address or if their only “address” is a P.O. Box may be an identifier that they aren’t a legitimate operation. Not only should they have a physical location where they can be reached, but they should be in good standing with the community.
No Warranty on Workmanship
The longevity and durability of your newly installed windows are not solely dependent on the quality of materials used but also on the excellence of the workmanship. An obvious red flag to watch out for is if the contractor does not offer a workmanship warranty.
Workmanship warranties show how window manufacturers and installation companies stand by their work and are prepared to correct any issues tied to their installation process. No warranty often suggests a lack of commitment to quality and customer satisfaction.
Unclear Repair and Maintenance Services
You might be satisfied with the window replacement job, but what happens when something goes wrong afterward? An excellent contractor will provide after-sales services, including maintenance and repairs.
If your contractor dodges conversations about what happens in case of future issues or flatly states they do not offer after-sales service, consider it a red flag. Hiring a contractor ready to fix problems long after the initial roof installation is more beneficial.
Poor Clean-Up Standards
Window replacement is a considerable task that can create a fair share of mess. Professional window contractors understand that a part of their job is leaving the site as clean as it was when they arrived.
If you notice reviews or have references complaining about the contractor leaving debris behind or not cleaning up after the job, it’s a significant red flag. Remember, professionalism is not just about doing the job; it’s also about respecting the customer’s property.
Ignoring Building Codes
Adhering to local building codes is crucial in ensuring the safety and legality of your window replacement project. If a contractor suggests a course of action that you know flouts the building codes or if they seem ignorant about these codes, it’s a massive red flag. Noncompliance can have significant repercussions, including penalties or endangering your home insurance status.
Avoid Window Replacement Headaches With a Reputable Contractor
If in doubt, trust only reputable window installation contractors such as Window World of Boston in Woburn, MA. We put our customers first and deliver exceptional service. When you’re ready to move forward with your window replacement project, call us at (781) 262-3925 today! You can also visit our contact page for a free estimate.