Having home maintenance done by a professional Is cause for anxiety for many people. Often times this is because we are worried that the professional company doing the work will rip us off. And if they do rip us off, how are we to know? Afterall, THEY are the professionals, so often-times we don’t know very much about the work being done. So how do you know when the companies are ripping you off? How can you protect yourself from others who want to charge you too much for the work that they are doing. Afterall, it is the wish of most of us to pay the people we hire a fair amount of money for the work they do; no more, no less.
We spoke to some former employees of door companies like this that have reputations for ripping people off. I asked this former employee how he was trained to charge people. He told us that the way that these companies charge their customers so much is by charging a low hourly rate, while charging exorbitantly for parts. These companies know that as a consumer, you will have little to no idea on how much garage door parts cost.
These companies also did not pay their employees a base rate, but paid them in commission only, allowing the employees to set their own prices for the parts. This resulted in the employees charging sometimes $1,200 for an opener unit that would retail for $450 total, including labor. The issue (besides the fact that you are left to way overpay for something that could be done for a fraction of the cost) is that these employees don’t often have much of a choice. Their prices dictate how much they are paid. How much they are paid dictates how easily they can pay living expenses.
So after all of that, how can you make sure it doesn’t happen to you? I wrote an article here on how to make sure that you are getting a good deal on your service. It’s an in depth look at how to make sure that you are paying a fair price. Check that out after finishing this post!
My biggest pointer is to call around before getting your service done. Most garage door companies should be able to give you a rough estimate of cost from a simple explanation of the problem over the phone. Hung Right Doors charges a base service fee and adds the material cost on top of that. You can at least find out what the service charge is, and 9 times out of 10 we can take an educated guess of the issue and give you a materials rough estimate too. Getting prices from two or three other companies should give you a pretty good idea of the average cost of a service. To make this even easier on yourself, you can start building a list of home repair companies that you trust. By asking friends, as well as reading reviews. Feel free to ask employees about their work environment. See if they are on commission only or if they have a base rate, do some research on the company itself. If you have a ready-made list you won’t be panicked if a garage door emergency happens- you will know you can trust the people you’ve called to fix the issue.
Once the tech from the company is done with the initial diagnosis of the issue, they will give you a price on how much it will be for the repair. Make sure that you ask for an in-depth explanation of the invoice items. Basically, you are looking to see how much you are being charged for the materials (and what they are) and how much you are being charged for the labor. If anything seems fishy you can excuse yourself to call someone else, for a quick estimate. Remember too, if they came out to your home and you don’t think the cost seems fair, you can always send them away! Most of these bigger companies will charge you for them to just come out and give you an estimate.
Our recommendation is of course that you make sure to make appointments with people who give free estimates. Hung Right Doors will never charge you for us to simply come out and diagnose the issue, and tell you how much the cost is. If you don’t like our price, or simply can’t afford it, feel free to send our tech home. Always free of charge.