When you need a plumber in Victoria BC, it is often because there is a plumbing emergency in your home or business that needs immediate attention. At times like these it can be easy to forget to check on the plumber you are about to hire in favour of fast and convenient service. Don’t be tempted by this – hiring a plumber that is not properly licensed or does not know what they are doing can bring serious problems in the future. Below are 7 questions that you should ask your Victoria plumber before hiring them, emergency or not:
- Do you have a license?
This question is first on the list for a reason. It is always the most important question to ask. Most plumbers will tell you they do have a license, but don’t just take their word for it. Be sure to see the license or do your own research. Any plumber that is licensed will be registered with a governing body at the provincial or local level. If you do use a plumber that isn’t licensed, you run the risk of having work done that does not pass inspection.
- Do you charge an hourly or flat rate?
Read your fine print! When getting an estimate from a plumber, always be sure to check whether they charge an hourly rate or a flat rate. Many contracts include small clauses that make homeowners responsible for any reasonable costs to complete the job. If they are charging you hourly, an total cost can easily end up being much higher than originally quoted.
- Does your estimate include the total cost?
Many Victoria plumbers offer free estimates to potential customers, but you should only trust those who take a look at the job site before giving you a definite quote. Once they give you a number, be sure to ask them what this cost includes (labour, parts, extra room for problems, etc.). Some estimates look good on paper, but when the final bill reaches you it can be much higher.
- When do you expect payment?
Always check with your Victoria plumber on when they expect to be paid, and what percentage of the total cost they expect to be paid up front. If anyone asks you to pay all of the total cost up front, walk away fast. The most common payment methods are based on task milestones (paying when certain elements of the job are completed) or time frames (payment after a certain number of weeks).
- Who will be performing the plumbing work?
When you hire a plumber, make sure you know who they will be employing to work on your home or business. Be sure to ask about their level of experience and qualifications, and if the plumber is reluctant to give that information it may be time to look elsewhere.
- What happens if something breaks during the course of work?
Before entering into a contract, be sure to ask about guarantees or warranties that your plumber offers with their work. Once you are comfortable with what is offered to you in the case of something breaking, be sure to get that guarantee in writing.
- Do you clean up?
Nobody likes having a pile of old parts, dirt, grime, and boxes left around their home after a job is complete. It may seem obvious, but some plumbers do not take care of these messes, and others may charge an additional fee for cleanup.