A Guide to contractor Matching services
With so much information available at our fingertips, it’s no surprise that more and more contractors are using the internet to get connected with clients, or customers to find a contractor. It has given rise to popular contractor matching services, like HomeAdvisor or Houzz. While many people use these services with great success, there are things to consider first.
READ THE FINE PRINT
Whether as a home builder/renovator or business owner, be sure to actually read their terms of service before signing off on it. Some services may use deceptive practices, or use your business’ name in self-serving marketing practices. Check the Better Business Bureau to see what kind of rating the service (or contractor, for that matter) has, and what kind of complaints there are. Online complaints should be carefully weighed, but if one service’s ratings are overwhelmingly negative, which most of the reviews saying identical or very similar things — that’s a red flag.
YOU’RE ADDING A MIDDLEMAN
The thing about services like HomeAdvisor is that, while generally free to customers, it does charge a fee to the businesses and contractors that get “leads,” aka business, via the site. That’s adding another layer of fees to your likely already-expensive project. By doing a little more old-school research on your own — talking to family and friends, checking out past work done by local contractors — you could help keep your project’s overall costs down.
Perhaps another symptom of adding a middle man, but both homeowners seeking contractors and contractors seeking customers often complain about the quality of the person on the other end of a matching service transaction. Homeowners cite shoddy work from subpar contractors, while business owners often report weak leads that don’t turn into actual business. While services like HomeAdvisor have filters in place that try to weed out the, well, weeds, some bad seeds are likely to slip through the cracks. While the same could happen without the use of a contractor matching service, it’s far less likely to occur if you go with a contractor that comes highly recommended by people you personally know and trust.
While most contractor matching services are “free to use,” that doesn’t mean you aren’t giving them anything. Be very careful what information you share, and again, read the fine print. Some such services sell your information to companies, which can result in unsolicited calls or other marketing efforts for which you never bargained.
At the end of the day, if you’re looking for advice or information on a home build or remodel project, the best people to talk to are industry professionals, not third-party sites. If you’re looking for more information, Kehoe Kustom would be happy to help! Visit our website, or contact us at 845-988-4644.