You likely use your garage door multiple times every single day, but have you ever stopped to think about the value it adds to your home? Until faced with a damaged or inoperable garage door, it’s easy to overlook one of the most prominent and important features of your home.
Not only does a problematic garage door cause inconveniences, it potentially creates privacy and security issues for your home. That makes choosing the right garage door repair company even more important, as you want to ensure you will receive quality parts, experienced labor and a lasting guarantee.
When comparing estimates and proposals from multiple companies, you also want to make sure you’re making an equal comparison. Here are some of the criteria you can use to evaluate potential vendors for your garage door repair project.
- Company information
- Pricing and payment
- Protections and guarantees
- Availability and response
- Reputation and satisfaction
- Appearance and representation
First, you want to verify the company is legitimate. Unfortunately, there are many scammers and fraudulent companies operating under the guise of home services businesses. A legitimate company will have a physical address registered online and, generally, some form of website or social media presence.
Also, consider how long the company has been in operation. In a general sense, more established and tenured companies employ more experienced technicians, demonstrate expertise on both recent- and older-model garage doors and have accumulated the knowledge and skills to solve even the most complicated issues.
You know your budget and what you’re able to spend. The estimate for your project depends on a number of variables, however, such as size, materials and design for new door sales and the severity of damage or parts needing replacement for service.
While pricing varies by vendor based on these and other criteria, the company should be able to provide more than one option to help you find the right solution to fit your budget. Choosing a vendor based solely on price, however, might lead to further complications down the road.
In addition to the estimate, consider the vendor’s accepted payment options. Many small service providers will accept only cash or check, while others may add a convenience charge for paying with a credit card. Financing options may also be available, allowing you to make payments over time rather than paying a larger sum upfront.
Your repair project is an investment of your hard-earned money and deserves to be protected. When choosing a vendor, start by ensuring the company you’re hiring is properly licensed, bonded and insured. Resources are available through state agencies and the Better Business Bureau to help you determine requirements for operating in your state.
You will also want to consider any warranties offered for the product or repair service you purchase. Be sure to ask about specific details, as warranties vary. You’ll want to clarify whether your guarantee covers parts, labor or both, as well as terms for time and usage limitations or restrictions. The amount of time a company has been in business might also be worthwhile to consider with a warranty, as you want to ensure they will be around to process any necessary warranty claims.
Be sure to ask about both the manufacturer’s warranty and that of the garage door repair company when considering vendors. Some companies may even offer added incentives such as ongoing service plans to provide an added layer of protection for your investment.
Depending on your situation, your need for garage door repair might be urgent, or you might have time to do further research. Regardless, you want to find and work with a company that will be able to respond to your needs in a timely fashion. This might include evening, weekend or even emergency scheduling availability.
Also, consider who answers when you call for service. For smaller companies, the same individual could be answering calls, booking appointments and servicing doors. For larger companies, you will likely work with different team members, providing more structure to your scheduling and service experience.
When researching a potential vendor, hearing from previous clients provides one of the best opportunities to hear both success and horror stories. With websites such as Google, Facebook and Yelp allowing customers to share their personal experiences and reviews, finding these firsthand perspectives has never been easier.
It’s important to note, however, that when reading company reviews, it’s not unusual for any company to receive a small number of negative reviews. There are many reasons for this, such as miscommunication or unaligned expectations. Reviews are best when considered as a collective rather than individual scores.
In addition to client reviews, you can also research a company’s reputation through third-party organizations such as the Better Business Bureau, Angie’s List and others.
The way a company and its team members represent themselves speaks volumes about their professionalism, commitment and approach to serving customers. From your initial phone call through a technician or salesperson arriving at your home, evaluate each interaction.
Consider the attitude and friendliness of those you speak with, along with the appearance of the people visiting your home and the vehicles they’re driving. If a company doesn’t put the effort into maintaining its own personnel and assets, you might question how much effort they’ll put into your garage door repair project.
Collecting and gathering all this information will take time, but doing so will help ensure you choose the right garage door company for your project. By selecting a reputable, verified and service-minded company, you will save yourself potential issues in the future and improve the safety and security of your home for you and your family.
Here’s another link to our Garage Door Service Scorecard to help you in your decision-making process.