For years we have been searching to own the best that life has to offer for the least amount of money and sacrifice possible! It sounds kind of funny when stated like that, but upon reflection it holds truth.
At some point we must all realize that there is an acceptable cost, which is higher than we would like to pay, but we recognize the value in it, at that price.
Determining that point of value is something only you can do, and only when you are empowered with the knowledge you need to understand it, and when you have the confidence and trust in those you chose to provide it.
Let us look at an example: You would not run out and buy 30 window air conditioning units to cool your new home. It would certainly achieve the objective and save money, but we inevitably spend more and buy an infrastructural HVAC system, because the benefits and value far outweigh the alternative.
We have all been conditioned to shop a certain way. That way is to purchase ingredients and try to make a meal / experience from those ingredients. It almost never works out the way we intended and while we enjoy aspects of the results, we never receive the full value of our purchases!
The conclusion that we all inevitably come to; is that its not about the products (ingredients), it is about the service! It is almost always worth paying a little more for better service and expertise in order to alleviate any possible headaches that might come up during the process.
Here are some guidelines:
Trust your instincts. If a deal seems too good to be true, it is. Remember, youre buying the entire company when you purchase an installed system. Look at the company as a whole and make your decision based on your impressions of everyone who works there. When asking questions, dont try to intimidate the installer; but dont be afraid to ask tough questions. If their answers are vague, be skeptical. In addition to experience, youre primarily interested in their enthusiasm. They should be passionate about what they do.
- Verify that the company is fully insured and licensed.
- Get the quote in writing. Make sure it is an all-inclusive, closed-end, firm bid. Be clear on any and all additional charges.
- Make sure you fully understand what each comparative system is designed to do, how it will function and how it will perform. No two systems are ever exactly alike.
- Never tell one installer what another installer has bid; because if he lowers his bid, you can rest assured, youre paying for it somewhere either in equipment, time or service.
- And be cautious about the lowest quote. Youre buying a complete product, service and performance package. The lowest price is not necessarily the best option.
- Make sure you understand exactly which responsibilities the installer is accountable for.
- Does the quote include system pre-wiring, documentation, elevations, wiring diagrams, project meetings and management?
- Procure a written inventory of all equipment: exact brand, make and model numbers of every product you are buying. Accept no unauthorized substitutions.
- REMEMBER: This is going to be a long term relationship. Will the company you choose be there for you when your system malfunctions at the time you need it most?