Scam Alert: Things To Look Out For When Hiring A Window Installation Service Provider | Fort Worth, TX
At one point in time, every homeowner thinks about replacing their windows. Maybe you want to spruce up your home with a fresh, new look, or you are looking for ways to lower your high energy bill. According to ENERGY STAR, energy-efficient windows can save you 12 percent or more on electricity.
Whatever your reason, searching for a window installation provider to help you choose the perfect window for your home can be overwhelming. Not to mention that homeowners have been a favorite target of fraudsters looking for an easy way to make money.
Scams in the window installation industry are not uncommon and range from the con artist at your doorstep to the overzealous salesman who won’t stop talking. Read on to learn more about common red flags and how to protect yourself from these swindlers in Fort Worth, TX.
If the Deal Is Too Good to Be True
Buying and installing windows isn’t cheap. But homeowners are often mesmerized by below-average prices and discounts. It is probably ridiculous if a window installation service provider gives you an absurdly low price. The windows could be the wrong size or of poor quality. They may not be covered by warranty and do not qualify for replacement. Some long-term warranties may not cover labor costs or contain some sort of caveat. This is why you should always read the fine print.
Sometimes they have special promo packages where you buy one thing and get something for free. Some may also offer special financing options, where you’ll pay a lot of interest. Always get an estimate from more than one company. That way, you can know if you are getting a reasonable offer or if they just want to make extra money.
Others may not be upfront with how much the whole installation will cost. They may leave out essential steps from the quote only to charge later for the additional work. Make sure you know each step of the installation, how much each will cost, and how long it will take.
If They Pressure You to Pay
When shopping for windows, a window installation service technician often tells you that a particular offer only lasts a day and pressures you to pay. They know you will want to go home and think it over or discuss it with your partner. Don’t give in to it. A good company will give you time to make an informed decision, answer any questions, and give you several options.
When They Add to the Job
A window installation service provider may tell you they detected termites when removing your old windows. Or that a support beam is broken, and they will have to charge you more to fix it. While this could be true, homeowners often do not know what to look for.
To avoid falling for this and paying three times the original price, you can hire a home inspector in Fort Worth, TX to correctly assess the situation. Another option is to include a clause that covers unexpected job changes in the contract with the window installation service provider.
If They Are Vague
Before hiring a window installation service, do your homework, know what you need and want, and prepare questions. Ask the window installation service about the type of materials, what makes their windows so special, the installation cost, and any other things you need to know about.
A scammer often doesn’t have the patience to answer each question, as they just want to close the deal as fast as possible. Ask them for references. If they are unwilling to provide proof of their work with past clients, they could be hiding something.
If They Do Not Have the Necessary Paperwork
In most states, a window installation service provider must have a license. They also need to be insured and bonded. Make sure you counter check a license or insurance. There have been cases where scammers presented expired licenses or fake insurance certificates.
Ensure they provide you with a written contract. The company should be able to give you a detailed estimate that lists all the materials needed, the complete installation process, how long it will take, and any other things you have agreed upon.
If They Want Money Upfront
For a home improvement project of this size, it is normal to pay the contractor a deposit. But it should never be more than a third, in some states 10 percent, of the total price.
Scammers will ask you to pay the amount in cash but don’t come to do the job or only do it poorly. If possible, pay them the first installment when they deliver the materials, and always pay by check or credit. Don’t finish paying them until the job is done and you are satisfied.
If They Look Scammy
Sure, you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. But if the window installation service provider shows up in a dilapidated van with a messy appearance, it could mean they don’t care much about their business. More importantly, however, you want to take note of their professionalism.
Do they answer all your questions about materials or insist on getting a certain type? Do they have an office? A window installation service provider should have a physical address. Additionally, check for reviews and ratings on Better Business Bureau and other websites.
Need Help Finding the Perfect Windows? Call Energy Window Solutions
No matter what home improvement project you want to do, a scammer is waiting for you. Luckily for residents of Fort Worth, TX, we are here to help. Energy Window Solutions has been around for over 30 years and has built top-notch window systems. We can guarantee that you will be satisfied with our products. For more questions about our products and services, call us today or visit our showroom.
See our previous post on this topic here.