If anything goes wrong with your personal referral, this could sour the relationship you have with your client as well as your friend. As concierge professionals, we want to solve our clients needs quickly by pulling a name out of your hat but this may not work well for you in the long run. It is our job to do due diligence about who we are inviting into our clients homes.
When I'm finding a handy person to do a job I go through a process to ensure the quality of this individual. Here are a few ideas:
- Check Yelp for people in your clients neighborhood. www.yelp.com. Read the reviews and take a look at their ratings. If there have been issues, how were they resolved?
- If they have on, contact their Homeowners Association for referrals of contractors that have done good work in the past.
- Ask if they have used anyone in the past they were happy with. Maybe they have a family friend that can do the work.
- If you select some from the Yellow Pages, go through a process of looking on-line to see if there are any reviews, negative or positive about them.
Once you select a few candidates:
- Ask for multiple bids from at least three people. Make sure they are very detailed in their bid. Have they included parts and labor. Who are the members of their crew. Will I feel comfortable leaving my client with these folks alone? Do I need to be there when the work is going to be done.
- Contact the Contractors License Board to make sure their license is in good standing and it has not been revoked. Also make sure they have liability insurance.
- Call some of their previous clients to get a referral.
- Make this decision with your client and make sure they are happy with the price and the persons qualifications.
Working with contractors and handypeople can be hard. The noise and dirt can be a problem for your clients. Do whatever you can to make your clients happy. They may even need to stay in a hotel or with family for a few days while the working is being done.