April 13 Newsletter, 2011

June 6, 2013 | posted in: Blog | by


Okay, so our newsletter schedule is totally out of whack. It’s been almost 2 months. You’d think that with all the rain we’ve had here in LA, I’d have plenty of time to sit in the office and put out our 3rd Elizabeth St. Newsletter. Well…that’s obviously not the case. We’ve been busy I guess.

April….what a great time of year. It’s getting warmer, the sun is shining (or at least trying very hard to) and you’ve got good reason to walk around your house and have a look. Winter rains may have helped our grass grow and our flowers bloom, but those same nasty rains can sure mess up your nice wood windows and trim. So, if your spring maintenance list has painting on it …..have I ever mentioned our “Painter-for-a-Day” program. As always feel free to give us a call and we can talk about that list.

Our ‘topic of interest” in this issue is “Hiring the Right Home Improvement Service, Part 1″. Besides price and quality of work, you should know ….are you hiring a company or an individual owner/craftsman who does the work himself. What is their business model? I had a recent experience which I will share with you.

In our Preferred Vendor’s list, we’ve added an accountant, a financial adviser and my favorite traveling notary. And since I am very much in the thick of choosing and paying for my daughters first year of college, I left our College Tuition Consultant on the list. We have worked with all of these people and know first hand that they provide very good customer service.

Last but not least in this issue we’d like to highlight our very good customers, Nancy and Katie Heigl’s JasonDebusHeigl Foundation. The foundation has rescued and rehabilitated thousands of dogs. Please take a moment to check out the really cute dogs and the work they are doing. We encourage you to donate, if you possibly can @
www.jasonheiglfoundation.org/donate.shtm. It would be greatly appreciated.

Until next issue……

Thankfully yours,

Bill Moser
Elizabeth St. Painters

Hiring the Right Home Improvement Service,  Part 1

If I’m like everyone else, and I am, it took me a little while before I pulled the trigger on getting some work done on my house. Recessed lights. They were long over due. It wasn’t a huge job, something I hoped would be painless and over in a day or two.

The electrician I hired was very good. His price was competitive. A friend’s friend, a licensed electrician. Some people don’t like to do business with friends but as long as you insist on everything being in writing, you can usually avoid uncomfortable $$$ issues. We had no $$$ issues, but read on and you’ll see why this Service provider is not on our prefered vendor list.

First day of work…he arrives about 9:30 am. I’m ready @ 8 am. Then after a few hrs. he’s off to buy supplies. Comes back, after lunch, works some more putting holes in the ceiling, covering everything effectively, starting to map out his work. Oops, needs something else….he’ll be right back. (I was around the home office a lot these few days so I noticed.) When he’s back and getting into it again, up in the attic, it turns past 5 pm, then past 6pm.

I’m ready to eat and so is my wife, who has come home and escaped into our bedroom. Our kitchen is next to the rooms where the lights are to go so we’ve got dust everywhere…it doesn’t matter how much you cover…I just want the day to be over and to eat. Finally, he’s done. “Do you want me to clean this mess up or is it okay, until tomorrow?” Another 1/2 hr! Forget it. See you tomorrow.

Day 2 is better. No more running to the store, work progresses nicely. Only problem seems to be if I’m in the house and we need to decide on something. It’s painful. He’s a talker, worse then me. Any interaction turns into 10-15 minutes of discussion. Work stops when this happens…..geez, it’s 7:30 pm, he was hoping to finish up tonight? We’re going out to eat. Lock the door behind you. Mess is still there for day 3.

Day 3 is easy. Finishing touches, final clean up, move the furniture back. Don’t worry I’ll clean the kitchen myself, one last time. Here’s the check, thanks, everything looks great. Sure, we’ll get together next time my friend comes to town….but I can’t put you on the prefered vendor’s list.

Why? Because for us to recommend a Home Improvement Vendor, they should (in most cases):
Get to the job first thing every morning – not 2nd or 3rd.
Not leave for supplies in the middle of the day
Finish for the day before it’s diner time.
Have a crew that can clean up everyday and make sure the job doesn’t take a 3rd day when you said 2 days or 6 when you said 4.
Have a “project manager” person who can do all small talk / decision making, drop-off supplies and not cause work to stop.
Provide all of the above, at a reasonable price and still do quality work.
We’re not saying that there aren’t a lot of very good “craftsman” out there that work alone and do a great job. Just know what you need for each project (interior is different then exterior) and understand or simply ask, how do they run their business? Remember sometimes it’s better to pay a little more if it means less headache.

As far as getting on our vendor list, when we find a Home Improvement Service Provider that does business like we do…..we’ll put them on it.

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