Homeowners often seek out kitchen and bathroom remodel companies for various tasks. This could be a basement renovation involving cabinet and counters, or a kitchen remodel that was pivoted to a larger project. Ultimately, homeowners are seeking for professional help that could relieve them from the stress and skills required to complete everything correctly. In a perfect world, every kitchen and bath company is fully competent in remodel projects. The designers understand and able to provide valuable suggestions that contribute to the success of the project. This is not the case in many of the homes we have seen. There are three core principles every homeowner should write down to reduce the risk of finding a bad company.
Rule number 1, professional and unbias opinion.
This rule is reflected in design, supply and build. From a design perspective, a bad kitchen and bath designer usually have one of the two characteristics. alpha dominant: I’m always right mentality or submissive to everything the homeowner says. Both personalities will eventually backfire. Homeowner wants a home that they can live comfortably or generate additional value, this requires communication and articulation. A good kitchen designer will provide honest opinions and work with the homeowner to understand and tries to integrate aspects that are most important to them.
On the supply side, a successful kitchen and bath showrooms will have a network of distributors and partners they work with. The business is able to help to identify the pro and cons of individual components in the design. This ranges from color to actual functionality. It’s important for homeowners to find a kitchen and bath remodel business that is able to recommend brands based on needs and not play favorites.
Once homeowner proceeds, construction should be a stress-free process. Designers should coordinate and project manage the process. previous owners may have made changes that result in surprises for remodeler. The designer is responsible for managing these and discuss changes if needed with homeowners.
Rule number 2, Review online presence
In the 21st century, almost all kitchen and bath companies have an online presence. Check out their social network and photos they post. Have they done a design you interested in. Are they able to showcase before and after photos and not just after? How are they managing their brand presence? How are they managing negative feedback? These are the questions homeowners should ask during the research stage. Take all information gathered with a grain of salt, the online presence is one aspect of the business and may not reflect the overall quality of the business.
How would you know you should avoid the business using rule number 2? Simple, if something doesn’t seem right, question it directly and see how the business responds. Designers should know their work well and able to respond to your questions. If designer start dodging questions and trying to hide, it may be best to stay away.
Rule number 3, Paperwork
Always make sure there is a paper trail of the work. Verbal communications are great, written are better. Kitchen and bath contractor and the homeowner should have written proof of changes made along the way. This is good protection for both parties. When picking a kitchen and bath contractor, ask what their preferred communication is and how long you should be expecting a response. Never proceed with a company if they are not providing any written document.
The other note here is the payment schedule. Most kitchen and bath companies do not require a 100% payment upfront. Avoid companies that require 100% upfront payment unless they are sourcing a very unique product.
Rule number 4, Physical location and pricing
Running a business will require upkeep costs. The cost of office, employee, software, materials, insurance, and labour all adds to the overhead to the business. The cost of running a business also increases each year. If homeowner stumbles upon a quote that is significantly lower than the market average then the homeowner should ask why. It’s financially improbable for a business to offer deals that fall significantly below the market average. There are reputable builders without a physical office location, and the price can be slightly lower but it should still in-line within the 5-10% range. Don’t hesitate to ask for a reference check if you have concerns.
Bonus: Additional ways to check the credibility of a company.
1: Check the business registration- Both federal and provincial register company can be checked with Ontario or federal websites.
2: Years in business- Longer time in business help lessen the risk.
3: Warranty- Does the kitchen and bath business have a warranty and what does it cover?
At the end of the day, your designer should wish you happiness and success in the project as it adds value to their business and portfolio. If you have a question, do not hesitate to question.