Q: Can I ask questions about a bid package I’ve received from your company?
A: Absolutely. It’s important to us that you’re absolutely sure of the contract’s terms before you sign. We’ll try to explain, in very clear language, the descriptions of work and payment terms set forth in the contract. But if your question is of a legal nature, you may want to consult a lawyer who practices construction law in California.
Q: Do you require a deposit before work starts?
A: No. Our standard contract requires an initial payment that’s due when work begins.
Q: Can I make changes to the work set forth in my contract?
A: Yes. If we’ve received a signed contract from you, or if work is already underway, contact us to discuss the changes you wish to make. If you haven’t mailed the contract yet, contact us to discuss the changes. We’ll then revise the contract to reflect those changes.
Q: How much time does an estimate typically take?
A: A residential estimate typically requires 30 minutes. Commercial estimates usually take longer, depending on the scope of work and the size of the property.
Q: Do you charge for estimates?
Q: Do you need to enter the building to conduct the estimate?
A: No, provided the area to be serviced is accessible from the outside by a 30-foot ladder.
Q: Do I need to be home during the estimate?
A: If we can access the area to be serviced, your presence isn’t required. But we highly recommend that you’re there. The estimate is an opportunity for you to point out problem areas and start evaluating our team and their professionalism. We believe in the importance of building a rapport with you sooner rather than later.
Q: What comes after the initial estimate?
A: You can expect to receive a bid package in the mail within two or three business days. It contains a contract, photos, literature and product samples. Please review these materials carefully.
Q: What forms of payment do you accept?
A: We accept personal and business checks, money orders, cashier’s checks, Visa and MasterCard.
Q: When are payments due?
A: Our residential contracts usually require a portion of the contract sum to be paid the moment work begins, and the balance when the job is complete. Commercial contracts are paid in phases, according to a set schedule. The schedule is determined by project milestones such as material delivery and completion of a certain proportion of work. We propose a detailed payment schedule with each commercial bid submittal.
Q: What’s your lead time?
A: Our lead time during the summer season is approximately four weeks for major projects (such as roofing and siding). Off-season lead times usually range from one to two weeks for major projects. Minor work can usually be started within a few days.
Q: Can you provide an exact start date for my project?
A: We can schedule a mutually acceptable target start date, but the actual start date is subject to change according to weather conditions and the projects scheduled to take place in advance of yours. It’s reasonable to expect a delay of one day for each day that it rains between now and then. We also stress the challenges of accurately determining the time requirements of ongoing work; this is especially true at the height of the roofing season, when lead times are longest. Finally, higher scheduling priority is given to properties in need of immediate attention. The best we can do is provide a target start date now and keep you informed, on a regular basis, of expected scheduling changes. We appreciate your understanding.
Q: My job is scheduled. What kind of preparations am I responsible for?
A: Enclosed with our bid package is a pamphlet titled, Before the Big Day. Please review the pamphlet carefully and ensure all requirements set forth are met prior to the start date. We may not be able to start work otherwise. If we ask to use your driveway, please ensure it’s available the day the job is scheduled to start. If the driveway is the only exit from a shared parking lot, it’s especially important that the people who use the parking lot are asked to move their vehicles before work commences.
Q: My project’s start date coincides with street cleaning. Is this a problem?
A: No. In fact, we prefer street cleaning days. When the street is vacant, more parking is available.
Q: What should I expect on the morning of the start date?
A: Big trucks, a host of tradesmen and a lot of noise. Don’t be alarmed—this is normal.
Q: Is my presence at the property required when work begins?
A: We strongly recommend you plan to be there for at least the first half hour. We take extra care to stage jobs in a way that minimizes disturbances to your property, schedule and neighbors, but sometimes we’re faced with choices we can’t make without your participation. After the first half hour, you can resume your regular day.
Q: Do I need to be present throughout the entire duration of the job?
A: No. Most of our customers want to escape the noise.
Q: My residential project is approaching completion. Will you clean up?
A: Removal of work-related debris is included in our scope of services. We go out of our way to remove all dust and debris —especially stray nails—before we pack up for the day. In the unlikely event that we do miss a spot, call and we’ll send a cleanup crew.
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