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One relatively simple way to increase the value in your home is to replace the windows. An excellent way to find the needed supplies is to check www.replacement-window-directory.com. Adding quality replacement windows not only improves your home's appearance, but it can add modernization and style as well. It's also a good idea if your home is older and you're looking to save on energy costs. If you do decide to replace your windows, choose a style that goes with the current look of your house and adds to its appearance. This is most important with vinyl/PVC and aluminum designs when you install them in older homes. Before you start, look at homes similar to yours in your area and determine which effect looks best for your particular type of home. One important thing to keep in mind is the delivery time. You should always ask your windows supplier how long it will take to have yours delivered. To protect yourself, make sure this is stipulated in your contract as well. In addition, you should ask for an estimate of the work's duration once installers are on your home's site.
In order to ensure that you get the best work out of the contractor or supplier, you should make sure that you are professional but friendly. Of course, it's true that you don't want to "buddy up" with anyone working for you, but neither should you treat contractors or suppliers as though they are out to get you and are crooks. In fact, this is only going to hurt your relationship with them, as well as the process itself. Friendly, fair professionalism is always the best choice. Stay on top of things and watch carefully, but be prepared to listen to any advice given to you, especially if problems come up while the work is taking place.
Always ask your supplier how long the delivery will be. It's also a good idea to have this stipulated on your contract. Additionally ask for an estimate of how long the work will take to complete once they are on site. One major problem with the window, siding and roofing business is that anyone with a pickup truck and a ladder can easily call themselves a contractor. Many do not even bother to get a proper license. (Incidentally a license can easily be obtained by filling out a simple application form and payment of less than $200.00 per year). These contractors are not required to have an office, they can work out of their basement, back yard or just out of their pickup truck. It's easy to get into the business and it's even easier to get out of the business. For this reason in particular we only recommend you deal with established contractors who have a supporting infrastructure.
One major drawback to the window, roofing and siding business is that just about anyone can call himself or herself a contractor. Many do not have formal contractor licenses. (Even getting a license is no guarantee of good work; usually, you can get such a license by filling out a simple application and then paying less than $200 per year.) Contractors are not required to have an office and can work out of their own homes or even just out of the back of a pickup truck. This is why it's important that you should only deal with contractors who are established in the community and to have an established infrastructure as well; it's also a good idea to get recommendations from friends. Before the work starts, ask the contractor you choose to give you a written lien waiver. In most jurisdictions, suppliers, subcontractors and employees have the right to file mechanics liens against your property if the contractor you choose does not pay them. This is true even if you have paid your contractor materials needed or for the work; if the contractor himself does not meet his financial obligations to anyone working with him, suppliers or workmen can come after you for payment. Therefore, if you pay the contractor, make sure you get him/her to sign a lien waiver and get copies of its so that you can protect yourself from having to pay should he not pay those working under him.
A major drawback to the current setup of windows, roofing and siding businesses is that anyone who wants to do so can call himself or herself a contractor. Many of these "contractors" in fact do not have any kind of formal training or licensing. In fact, they can work out of their backyards, basements or vehicles, without any formal training or infrastructure whatsoever. (Even licensing isn't a guarantee, since this just requires relatively simple application processing and a fee of about $200 per year.) To protect yourself, make sure you only work with contractors who have an established infrastructure and are well known in the community. One good way to begin this process is to ask for recommendations from friends who had similar work done. Before you begin the work, asked your contractor to give you a lien waiver in writing. In most places, suppliers, subcontractors and employees have the right to file what's called a mechanic's lien against your property if the contractor you've chosen does not actually pay them. This can happen even if you have paid your contractor in full for the materials and time needed or for the work. In fact, if the contractor himself does not meet financial obligations to anyone working under him, those people can come after you for payment. Therefore, when you pay the contractor, require him to sign a lien waiver and get copies as well. This will ensure that you are protected from having to pay anyone else for work already paid for.