We’ve all had to hire someone to come into our home to do work–a plumber, painter, electrician, etc. But how do you know where to begin, who to call first, and who is good at this particular task? As Project Managers at Bluebelle, many of us do this on a daily basis and sometimes all day long. We pride ourselves in having a large database of vendors that we recommend, having worked with them before. If we have a need and no resource to go with it, we go to our team members and community of professional service providers for recommendations. If that falls short, there are a few tools out there to jump-start your search. Below are just a few of our go-tos when we need to find someone to bring into our clients’ homes:

Screen Shot YELP AM

YELP!: This is a really popular and well-known resource. It tends to pop up first on Google results, so it’s quick way to find someone and their mobile app is easy to use. All the information is consolidated in one place (contact information, website, etc.) It offers first-hand reviews, positive and negative, from individuals who have used their service. When using YELP, it’s really important to really read through these testimonials as one can contrast drastically from another. Why did one person give them 5 stars and another 1 star? Is the remark legitimate or minor and emotional?

Screen Shot 2015-DC

Diamond Certified: They back their companies with Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee. This guarantee assures the consumer that their vendors are properly vetted using a rigorous rating and certification process. In addition, they continue to conduct surveys of these already rated and certified companies. DC offers a company synopsis written by them but also includes testimonials and a capabilities table.

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Angies List: We’re sure you’ve seen the commercial! It’s an easy-to-use site that offers ratings and a variety of services. You do need to become a member to use this site. A one-year membership costs $9.99. Members are also offered discounts to services from vendors sourced on its’ site, so it’s a great go-to resource for those that are always looking for top-rated home service professionals!

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HOUZZ: We think their interface looks fantastic. This site focuses on home décor, design and home vendors and offers more project context for review i.e. (project date, budget etc.) This is a great site for anyone who is about to embark on a remodel, a newly landscaped yard or another household project. It also highlights photos of completed work.

Now that we’ve recommended some sites for you to begin your search, here are some things to consider once you have a vendor on the phone:

  • Approach these calls like a job interview to determine if this is a good fit for yourself and the project at hand.
  • Do you find the vendor helpful in answering your questions or are they “short” and appear to be just trying to get you off the phone?
  • Are their answers canned or are they able to relate your questions to their past experiences?
  • Are they amenable, how long does it take them to return your call, and how soon can they get to your project?

I always like to get a couple of quotes whether they are in-person or over the phone. Because, it’s not always about price. I often find that if a vendor is being compared to another and one is far more helpful than the other over the phone or in-person,  I’m more inclined to work with the latter hands-down.

We hope you find this information helpful. Good luck and happy searching!

 

Danielle and the Bluebelle Team