The decision to build a fence is one of the most important choices a homeowner can make. Barring the presence of the necessary skills, materials, and equipment, the project requires trusting a professional with the well-being of your home and yard. Given the complexities and expense of the effort, it proves critical to choose the right firm for the job. Yet, fence installers come a dime a dozen, with little objective metrics to sort the competent fence company from the hacks.
This article helps you do just that. With patience, knowledge, and confidence, making the right determination on a fencing installer can end in satisfaction and value in the final product. In the give-and-take between consumers and vendors, considerable power rests with those smart shoppers who know how to wield it. This means research and discerning judgment in the interactions with potential firms. Here, we’ll share information on the qualities to judge and how to judge them to ensure you’re getting everything that you pay for. Keep reading for the top things to look for as you research fence companies.
1) Fence Installers with Longevity
The staying power of a firm correlates to that of its product. Experience says a lot about the various factors that go into the final product–the management, the service, the labor, and the cost.
Beginning with the first of those elements, firms that outlast their competitors tend to manage their finances and logistics efficiently. This means taking on the correct amount of jobs that allows revenue to flow into the firm without spreading resources too thin and dragging out projects. Good management makes smart decisions about the sourcing of tools and materials that balances cost with quality. This often means established, constructive relationships with adjacent businesses and associations that build the firm’s strength, reputation, and resources.
Longevity necessitates good service, the kind that generates satisfied customers and solid reviews and referrals. This holds true for all stages of fence construction, from the initial consultation and estimate to ensuring the quality of the finished fence. Good service professionals communicate complex construction information into digestible advice useful to customer decision making in a way that provides for the future of the firm itself.
In order to play the fencing game, companies need to draft the right players to their team. This proves critical since the skill of the workers determines the quality of the fence, no matter the nature of the management, service, or materials. Skilled labor contributes to the longevity of the company by executing beautiful projects in a timely manner in a way that satisfies each customer and ensures that each fence bearing the company’s name stays intact for years to come.
Finally, a company that continuously survives the competition of the market has its prices right. This doesn’t necessarily mean they advertise the cheapest products, but rather means that their prices reflect a balance of quality and cost (also known as value).
For one of the best measures of whether a company deserves your business, check its establishment date. This more than any other number will give you the information you seek.
2) Fence Installers that are Responsive
Your interactions with each fencing company will be telling about the way they go about their work, from the planning to the execution. Learning which questions to ask and how to gauge the answers are important skills in deciding between your different options.
First, make sure the company is competent in the fine details of fence construction. A basic understanding and familiarity with the process can allow you to ask the right questions to gauge whether each company is on top of things. Important elements of the fence construction process include:
Permits and regulations: Will the company acquire the right permits for your fence? Are they familiar with the local zoning regulations?
Planning around utilities: Will the company handle getting in contact with local utilities to mark off the utility lines beneath the ground?
Grading and sloping: Is it necessary to grade the terrain around the fence? Is the company familiar with building on slopes if they are present?
A competent company should be receptive to these questions of due diligence and offer confident answers that reflect their experience in dealing with all the steps of the fence building process. More, they should be responsive in their communications and willing to work with any concerns you have about your specific project. Your early interactions with each company are a way to judge whether they will be cooperative partners as the work moves forward.
3) Fence Companies with Breadth of Experience
Regardless of the scope of your aspirations, you’ll want to know that your future partner has experience in all sorts of jobs. A company with a wide range of experience and skills will be able to handle any auxiliary tasks as well as apply their various proficiency at each stage in the project. Should you decide to add to your project and expand the scope beyond a fence, it’s good to know that you’re dealing with a company that can deliver on patios, gates, and whatever else might complement your fence.
Beyond experience in a breadth of residential work, it’s also worth knowing if a fencing installer does commercial fencing as well. If so, check out the businesses that hired the company, and use them as a litmus test for the company’s expertise. Do other businesses you trust turn to this fencing company for their construction needs?
With an installer that performs a wide variety of services beyond fencing, you’ll find a staff with knowledge and skills that easily transfer to whatever project they undertake. Visit a company’s website to find the services they offer or speak to a representative at the company itself.
4) Fence Installers with Assurances and Credentials
Fence companies that produce quality products will back them. This means transparency about costs up-front, like free estimates for the cost of the project that work with the needs of each homeowner. This means more than generic, one-size-fits-all price models–it means listening to each client and working collaboratively to design a plan that works for their wishes and their budget. It also means sticking to this estimate as much as possible across the duration of the project.
On the back end of a project, backing a product means a warranty that stands by the job. These warranties protect against defects in materials and labor, meaning that if the job wasn’t done right with the right components, the company will make it right on its own dime. Always be wary of firms that do not back their products with warranties or firms whose assurances seem flimsy and convoluted.
One way to gauge the trustworthiness of a firm is to reference its credentials. Make sure the firm is operating with a valid license by checking with the Better Business Bureau or your local regulators. You’ll want to make sure the firm is insured against accidents and protected from liability in case something goes wrong. Finally, see if they belong to any fencing associations or other groups that impart a measure of trust. Investigating whether a company is transparent in their costs and confident in their work is critical, as is making sure they have the licenses and insurance to make good on their promises.
Finally, after doing your own investigation, it is important to consult others. Are they satisfied with the company’s work? Was the process of working with them straightforward and enjoyable? It can be difficult to gauge public opinion in a general sense, so turn first to those you trust. Ask anyone you know who recently installed a fence about their experience. Online reviews can be helpful to a point, but you never know the reviewer and whether they know what they’re talking about. Use online reviews to narrow your search, and look out for patterns of dissatisfied customers that might steer you away from an option. Ideally, you speak to someone you trust, see the fence yourself, and use that for your decision making.
Call Long Fence for a trusted leader in the commercial and residential fence industry since 1945
At Long Fence, our record of serving residential homeowners, government agencies, corporations, and others speaks for itself. Committed to safe practices and accredited by the Better Business Bureau, Long Fence takes no shortcuts in delivering quality fencing at a great value. With decades of experience in all sorts of projects, we can tailor our approach to each individual client while drawing on the breadth of knowledge and expertise accumulated over the years.
We offer free estimates, financing, and a lifetime labor warranty for any defective materials. We source the highest quality products, and our friendly staff is committed to working alongside you to design a plan that works for your dreams and your budget. Our designers and craftsmen work at the highest standards to plan, implement, and maintain each job. Since 1945, we’ve built our reputation as a dependable, knowledgeable, and hard-working company with unparalleled expertise. Give us a call today to get started on a free estimate.