What to Ask Your Contractor

What to Ask Your Contractor

Ask for a written quote from at least two to three contractors . They should include:

  • Are you licensed and insured?  (Want to check yourself? Find out at the Maine Fuel Board)
  • Do you offer maintenance and service after installation?
  • Do you have references I can contact?
  • Is the bid to retrofit or to install? If new equipment, what equipment will be installed? Additionally, information around the scope of the work. Maybe ask for a rough diagram showing the layout of ductwork and placement of piping
  • Ask about an estimate of the future work required to upgrade piping size and connections for the installation of additional gas appliances and equipment.
  • Are there warranties on equipment or services?
  • Ensure that all related taxes and any rebates or credits applied to the total cost.
  • Is your company an Efficiency Maine Registered Vendor and will you handle all the paperwork needed to ensure that I get all the Efficiency Maine rebates possible?
  • What are your payment terms and conditions? (Maine law limits down payments to 33% of the total contract price for projects over $3,000 and we recommend that final payment not be made until all work is completed satisfactorily.)
  • Do you provide financing or would you help me apply for Efficiency Maine Financing, if so what do you charge for those services?
  • What is your waitlist look like? What is the timeline of when the work can be completed?
  • How long is your quote good for?
  • What are the cost of permits and payment of related fees? (If their required, not usual)
  • Cost of subcontractors and tradespersons (if they’re required, not usual)

What to Know

Don’t forget these important reminders

  • Asking for quotes from multiple contractors gives you a variety of options and allows you to seek the best options as well as best price.
  • Keep in mind that best price doesn’t always mean best solution. Often times there is a cheaper solution, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you will be satisfied with the solution offered. Cheaper doesn’t always mean better. Don’t sacrifice your piece of mind or comfort.
  • If you feel like a bid that you are provided by a contractor is too high ask them about it. It is possible that this contractor noticed something the others didn’t.
  • If you don’t currently have a gas contractor, you should find one. If your equipment has any malfunction you want to make sure that you are their customer to ensure that they will be able to service your equipment asap.
  • Ensure that you do regular maintenance on your appliances and equipment to ensure that they run properly.
  • Provide a rating on Google/Yelp or other website when you’ve had a good experience with a contractor to help spread their business. Let your friends and family know about your experience.

Other places for more information:

Energy Star

Efficiency Maine

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