Coming home to a damp basement is low on the list of things you want to happen as a Toronto homeowner. When the bottom floor stays wet and humid throughout the year, the environment encourages mildew and mold to start growing.
If the dampness issue is left unattended for too long, it could damage the home’s infrastructure. At the very least, you could be exposing yourself and your family to an unhealthy environment.
When you experience these problems, an experienced basement waterproofing contractor offers the solution you need to improve or restore those conditions. Since it is up to you to choose the best one, here are the steps to follow to find a reputable provider.
Plan Your Project First
Before hiring a basement waterproofing contractor, it helps to understand the cost and scope of the project. This effort ensures that your estimate is accurate and helpful because it includes all relevant information.
A great first step is to measure the linear footage of your basement. Take this information to estimate how much space requires waterproofing support.
Once you can supply this information to potential contractors, you’ll want to secure three written quotes from local contractors to compare prices.
Check Contractor Qualifications
When hiring a basement waterproofing contractor in Toronto, you’ll want to review the various permits, insurance requirements, licenses, and bonds the province requires. Once you know what is needed for the business to provide services legally, you can proactively ask for this information from the contractor.
It is imperative to review information regarding workers’ compensation if someone from the contracting agency gets injured while waterproofing the basement.
Ask Questions to Verify Qualifications
Before choosing a waterproofing contractor for your basement, it helps to ask each prospective provider a few questions. The answers you receive can help to verify the experience each would bring to the project.
- Do you specialize in providing basement waterproofing services, or is your position more as a general contractor?
- Are there any similar projects you have completed that I could see?
- How long have you been working on basement waterproofing projects?
- Could you describe your approach to managing my situation?
- Is it standard practice for your firm to work with subcontractors?
When an agency works with subcontractors, you don’t get to choose who comes to your home unless specific arrangements are part of the agreement. Your goal should be to hire someone with relevant experience, excellent references, and an accurate start time.
If someone can’t begin the project in a couple of months, that’s information you should receive during your initial consultation.
Review the Contract Thoroughly
After agreeing to hire a basement waterproofing contractor, you should receive a contract to review and sign. If you don’t receive any paperwork, treat that situation as a red flag and move on to another agency.
The best contracts outline the scope of the work, how long it will take, and the expected payment structure. You should receive an overview of the insurance and permits, estimate labor and material costs, and a way to get out of the agreement if the work takes a long time to complete or is executed poorly.
This information serves as the foundation of your daily log. Keep track of the hours each worker completes at your home. Monitor each project milestone, request daily updates, and avoid agreements that require a large upfront deposit.
Review the Warranty
Reputable basement waterproofing contractors provide a warranty or guarantee that covers the services offered to their customers. This promise backs up the high-quality work they perform with an expectation that nothing will happen after the job ends.
Contractors that offer 15 or more years with their warranty are typically the best in the business.
When you have that kind of guarantee, it’s easier to find the peace of mind you need as a homeowner knowing that your basement will be fine.
Avoid Scams By Protecting Yourself
Although virtually all basement waterproofing contractors are honest professionals who work hard to meet their client’s needs, you can always find someone trying shortcuts or initiating a scam to take your money.
Whenever you have a potential contractor who is wary about your licensing questions or dishonest about their credentials, they should be avoided at all costs.
If one contractor underbids a project by a significant amount compared to the other two, it should prompt you to ask questions about why the cost is lower. When someone asks for a large deposit or payment upfront, don’t hesitate to look at another provider.