Dissatisfied Customers – When Being the Squeaky Wheel Can Help

by Rachel Laurendeau on January 22, 2013

We’ve all heard the cliché “the squeaky wheel gets the grease” and there is definitely some truth to it when it comes to home improvements. It is possible that you bought a defective part or materials, or that the contractor made some mistakes along the way. Whatever the case, it is important to speak up and get the problem taken care of before it becomes an even bigger issue. Here are some tips for making sure that you are heard when you have a problem.

• If you are doing DIY home improvements, be sure to keep all of the receipts for the materials that you purchase. If the products have a warranty, be sure to send in the warranty card as soon as possible and keep copies organized in your home improvement folder. If you were to buy a drill and it stopped working after three weeks, you would return it. The same should be true for a sump pump or a creaky shower door that you had installed.

• Many problems can be avoided by doing your homework ahead of time and choosing to work with reputable contractors and selecting quality products.

• Before you buy or sign on the dotted line, make sure that the product or service comes with a warranty and make sure you keep all of your paperwork. Before you call in about the problem, arm yourself with this knowledge. Some products, like kitchen appliances may have a 2 year warranty but your roof could be covered for 20; that’s why it’s so important to keep track.

• Prior to phoning or going into the shop, get over feeling shy, uncomfortable or nervous. If you are in the right, there is no reason to feel awkward and no one should make you feel that way.

• The longer you hesitate to make the call, the worse it will be and the less likely you are to actually deal with the problem. If you have a leaky window and need window replacement, this is not the time to procrastinate.

• If the person you are dealing with is unable to help or does not seem to want to help you rectify the problem, make your way up and be persistent. That is, talk to a manager, distributor or even the owner, if you have to.

If you need new windows, doors, or siding or you have any other major home improvement projects looming, be sure to work with a reputable company. If you’ve had any problems with their workmanship or products, don’t hesitate to call them as any reliable company will want to work with you to sort out troubles rather than have an unhappy customer spreading the word to their friends and family.

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