Below grade waterproofing is a critical aspect of any commercial building. If done properly, it prevents costly future repairs. Water seepage in the basement leads to serious structural problems if left unchecked.
If your basement is always wet or damp, you need a qualified contractor to help remedy the situation. But, how do you determine the most qualified?
Features of a Qualified Contractor
The best contractor for the job should have the following characteristics:
- Be licensed, bonded and insured
It’s advisable to engage a contractor who has all the necessary credentials. They should have complied with all relevant state and federal regulations.
Contractors in Florida are also required to be bonded before being licensed. This covers potential damage to property due to the contractor’s negligence.
They should also have at least two types of insurance coverage. Liability insurance covers property damage or injuries during the job. Workman’s compensation shields you from assuming responsibility for any injuries or fatalities.
A qualified contractor should have a bond number, trade license, and insurance coverage.
- Have Experience
The longer a contractor has been in business, the more likely they are to be good at their job. It also means they’ve dealt with your particular water leakage problem before. They’re thus in a better position to handle it better.
You can tell experienced contractors by how confidently they respond to your inquiries. They’re also more likely to offer a deeper insight into the problem than what you can observe.
- Have Reputable References
A true professional won’t have a problem providing a list of past jobs. These are references you can call or visit to confirm the contractor’s claims.
Seeing these past waterproofing projects and how well they’re holding up is a good sign. They’re more likely to convince you to hire that contractor.
- Offers Warranties
If a contractor has full confidence in their ability, they’ll offer assurance. This could be in the form of a warranty which covers labor and materials. Better yet, it should be transferable to the next building owner.
Some contractors offer extended warranties for some aspects of below-grade waterproofing. This is the best sign of their commitment to providing the highest quality service.
- Give Detailed Explanations
Skilled contractors don’t give vague explanations. They give a step by step account of everything they’re going to do to rectify your water seepage problem. They’ll tell you exactly how they’re going to:
- Re-route the drainage away from the bottom of the building’s foundation.
- Treat basement walls to stop moisture from affecting them.
- Install drainage to direct surface water away from the building.
- Inspect the building for and plug any other source of water leakage.
As well as other relevant repair and maintenance work. They should also provide a projection of what the finished job will look like.
A professional contractor always uses genuine tools, equipment, and materials. These include water repellent products, rubber coating, a deep penetrating sealer, and moisture barrier.
Warning Signs of an Unreliable Contractor
To avoid falling victim to a quack contractor, watch out for the following warning signs:
- Failing to show up on time. This is a sign that the contractor will most likely do a shoddy job if hired. It could also mean they’re working on several projects at the same time, so they won’t focus completely on yours.
- Being cagey about providing his or her license, permit, insurance and other credentials. Only allow contractors to start work after presenting these documents.
- Not having the necessary equipment for the job. This could mean the contractor isn’t conversant with below-grade waterproofing problems. They might make the issue bigger and more costly to fix.
- Requesting odd payment arrangements. Contractors who ask for upfront cash payments should immediately raise a red flag. The same applies to those who offer you a massive discount if you pay in cash.
- Pushing you to hire immediately. Some might be aggressive about starting work even before signing a proper contract. Be cautious about vague contractors as well as those who have a bad attitude.
- Refusing to show a portfolio of past projects. This could mean the contractor is either inexperienced or has done poor quality work in the past.
- Having bad reviews. You can do a quick internet search and see the experiences of former clients with the company you’re thinking of hiring.
Trust your instincts before hiring. Seek a second opinion or dig for more information on that particular contractor.
Hire a Professional Contractor in Miami or Fort Lauderdale
A-1 Property Services is the best in the business. As a GAF MasterElite Roofing Contractor, our services are unmatched.
Our team members are helpful and certified to provide various commercial waterproofing services. Our experience, professionalism, and timely delivery set us apart from the competition. Contact us today to learn more about our range of services.