Don't Do These Things When Hiring a Tile Installer (Part 2)
DON'T FORGET TO LEARN FROM OTHERS' EXPERIENCE.
Keep an ear to the ground when checking out a potential installer. Ask for testimonials, search for reviews online. Give special attention to reviews with pictures so you can verify his or her work. Follow up with references and get familiar with the installer's M.O.
DON'T UNDERESTIMATE THE VALUE OF ORGANIZATION.
Tile installation requires a lot of organization. An installer has to work efficiently because mortars, adhesives, and grout dry quickly and messiness can cause problems. If you can, try to watch your prospective installer at work or at least see his or her work space.
An organized work site has tiles prepared and stacked. Cuts have already been made and you might even see a map or plan of the pattern. An excellent tile installer makes all cuts and does all cleanup outdoors to keep the dust and mess down inside. Plastic to protect surfaces near the installation or sealing the work area off from the rest of the house indicates a particularly mindful and considerate installer.
DON'T FORGET TO GET IT IN WRITING.
Once you've found a tile installer that meets your expectations, ask for a bid in writing. You might need to ask an architect to draw up the exact specs of your room and the pattern and layout you want. You'll get a more accurate estimate and show your installer that you're serious about a job well done.
A good installer isn't afraid to guarantee his or her work. Get a written guarantee that the work will be free from leaks and other issues. You should expect a guarantee that covers you for about two years.
DON'T BUY THE TILE YOURSELF.
There are a lot of technicalities and ratings that your installer will understand better than you. You don't want to end up with tile that isn't suited to your application so let him or her handle the purchase of the tile. Plus, when you let your installer handle the tile, you won't be responsible for any problems with the materials. It will fall under your installer's guarantee.
DON'T DEVALUE PROFESSIONALISM.
Even in this increasingly casual and do-it-yourself world, professionalism is still a hallmark of an excellent business. It is important that a prospective installer delivers that bid on time. A simple thing like whether the installer gets involved in the community can say a lot about how your project will be handled. The way they appear, speak, and interact all hint at the experience ahead for you and your project.
Avoid a tile disaster and call in the professionals. With some careful consideration, you can find a stellar tile installer who'll complete your project with finesse.
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