Refinishing can be an excellent alternative to replacing bathtubs, countertops, tile and sinks. You get a fixture that looks like new in less than a day. But, not all refinishing companies are equally skilled. This article will help you choose the best refinishing company.
When it comes to tub refinishing, the refinisher’s years of experience, quality of materials and process used will largely determine the longevity and appearance you can expect from the project. With a low barrier to entry in the industry, some refinishers do not use the highest quality bonding agents or top coatings.
Here are a few things to ask before you hire a refinisher:
Are they licensed & insured?
The Maryland State Home Improvement Commission (MHIC) protects homeowners. It’s great when you can save a few bucks on a home improvement project, but, anyone who comes into your home to provide home improvement should be licensed by the Maryland State Home Improvement Commission. For the contractor, it’s a criminal offense to do work without a license, but, for the homeowner it means you give up your protection.
If you hire a refinisher who is not licensed by the State of Maryland or not insured, you could have a tough time if you run into problems later with the quality of the project or if there is an accident during the project. Anyone can say they are an expert, but that doesn’t make it so.
The MHIC compensates homeowners for actual monetary losses due to poor workmanship or failure to perform a home improvement contract. The benefit applies only to work done by licensed contractors – so, if you hire someone and it turns out they are not licensed, you have little recourse.
Licensed Contractors must display their home improvement license number on all of their home improvement contracts, trucks, and advertisements. If you don’t see it, you can check easy enough by looking up the contractor here or by calling the MHIC directly.
Maryland Tub & Tile is licensed and insured – MHIC #128554.
How long have they been in business?
Typically, the longer someone does something, the better they will be at it. If the refinisher is just starting out, you may want to pass. Ask how many tubs they’ve refinished in the last month. If the refinisher does other types of work – refinishing may not be their primary specialty.
Maryland Tub & Tile has been in business for 15 years and refinishing is our full-time specialty.
Do your homework
A good professional refinisher should have decent reviews (Angie’s List, Home Advisor, Google, Facebook) and should be in good standing with the BBB. They should be able to provide proof of any certifications or special training.
Maryland Tub & Tile is a Home Advisor screened & approved refinisher with many good reviews and references available.
Ask about the process and materials to be used
Ask to see actual samples to determine if the finish looks as good as they claim. An experienced refinisher is going to be able to explain the procedure or show videos, actual samples or other evidence as to their process. Professional grade top coatings will generally dry in 24 hours or less, so, if the refinisher tells you it will take longer – their materials may not be less than what you are paying for.
Maryland Tub & Tile products and process are time-tested and the best in the industry. We use professional-grade, top rated products.
Ask about a warranty
Make certain you know up-front what the warranty covers and how long it lasts. And, more importantly, get it in writing. You should be skeptical of warranties that are too short (less than 2 years), pro-rated or those that seem too good to be true (lifetime).
When it comes to warranties, Maryland Tub & Tile offers one of the best in the business with a 5 year, no-hassle warranty.
Ask about extra fees
There is an old saying: You get what you pay for. Sometimes when an estimate is too low, you have to wonder what you are NOT getting. You want your refinishing estimate to include all the things you need without any hidden surprises.
Maryland Tub & Tile provides an estimate that also includes re-grouting, caulking and crack repair in one flat price with no hidden added costs.
If you intend to get multiple estimates, write down the answers. We’ve helped you out with this handy checklist (our answers are already there!)
Read more about why Maryland Tub & Tile is the best refinishing company in the region.