Water Damage Restoration, Mold Remediation, Fire Restoration, Janitorial - What Questions Do You Ask the Provider?
There are so many inexperienced, new, out-of-town, and fly-by-night operators in the mititgation business in the Mobile, Daphne and Baldwin County areas, and the results have been so horrific (see http://www.servicemastermobilealabama.com/Service-Problems-Abound-in-the-Water-Damage-Business-in-Mobile-AL-1.html ) that SerivceMaster Advanced, The Master of Disaster <(251) 653-9333 & (251) 928-1028> , has decided to list some questions that you should ask any potential mitigation or janitorial provider. Here they are:
1. Where are your local offices? What is the exact address?
2. Who owns your company? Where does he or she live?
3. How much general liability, pollution and workman's compensation insurance do you carry? May I have a copy of your certification?
4. What training certifications do your people have? May I have a copy of the certifications?
5. Do you have any local references for similar jobs that you have performed?
6. Who are the LOCAL people who will be performing the work? Do you use temps? Have you done a records check or background investigation on them?
7. Is you bid based upon a certain amount of square feet per hour? How is your bid derived?
8. How many years have you been in the janitorial, mitigation, fire and water, mold remediation business? You are a (Servpros/ServiceMaster) franchise, how long have you been one?
9. How many employees do you have on your local payroll?
10. What is the largest homeowner/commercial/janitorial/mitigation job that you have performed?
11. Who are the members of your management team that I can call if there is a problem? May I have a local cell phone number for them?
12. What national industry affiliations do you have?
13. What local jobs have you completed? Suggest three. May I have their names and telephone numbers?
14. May I see a copy of your mitigation service contract? Will I be responsible if my insurance company does not pay?
15. May I see a copy of your janitorial contract? What are the terms for me to cancel if I am not satisfied? Is any notice required?
16. Who are your longstanding commercial cleaning customers? How long have you been serving them?
The above is just a start, but the idea is pretty simple. By the asking of a few questions, one can easily ascertain wherer or not they are dealing with a qualified LOCAL contracter. The issues are their qualifications, their dedication to our area (out-of-town companies may make it hard for you to collect if they leave the job half done), and finally, their training.
Not that you would want to deal with any of these unscrupulous companies in our area, but here are some examples of the type of stunts that they have pulled:
1. A local hotel operator told us of a crew that showed up with all temporary workers to dry his facility. They called the company in the middle of the night and it took them three hours to respond. When they got there, the job was unorganized, disrupted his guests and he said the work was "sub par".
2. A local mitigation company utilized a dessicant dehimidifier without using air movers (apparently he didn't know proper drying techniques), and let it run for 12 days! The small commercial job could have been done in 4 days tops. He rented the equipment and was determined to recover his dailey rental costs, and over-billed the customer by approximately $20,000.
3. During the Spring floods of 2014, one of our competitors consistently quoted one and a half times, what we would charge. We were called many times by customers in shock and asked to quote. Bear in mind that many of these flood events were non-insured losses.
4. During the Spring floods of 2014, one of our competitors over charged for work on a commercial building. This was clear by the fact that their estimate did not include and allow for, the reduction in equipment charges as areas dried over the five-day period. In other words, the drying equipment charged for on the last day, was exactly the same as the initial equipment used initially. This is one of the first things an insurance company looks for. Apparently there was no monitoring (checking) the jobs during the process.
5. An inexperienced contractor tore out a client's mold affected bathroom without erecting proper containment. He spread mold spores and contamination throughout the customer's home.
6. A small company was attempting to dry a laminate floor the had been throughly immersed in water. While real hardwood floors can often be saved via rescue mats, laminate floors are ruined and must be removed if they are completely affected. The company in question charged for the attempted drying service, although the floors were ultimately removed.
7. The same small company above, ignorant of IICRC standards, continuously overloads homes with more than the requisite number of air movers and dehumidifiers, over charging the customer.
8. Another new entity markets heavily to plumbers and offers them a "finders fee". This highly unethical practice has resulted in over charges and poor service.
We could go on and on with takes of woe. These companies give our entire industry a bad name. We sincerely hope you will ask a lot of questions before you call any of them.
Also, beware of middle men who have only a web presence here in Mobile or operate out of a one room suite with a telephone. These people have no loyalty to your community, and often subcontract work out to untrained subcontractors who may or may not do simple background checks on their personnel. These subs likely aren't trained, or certainly aren't trained to degree that the long tenured employees of ServiceMaster ADVANCED are.
Why take a chance?
ServiceMaster has been here. All along. We have handled some of the largest water damage and fires damage cleanup jobs ever handled in the area and we have performed services for literally thousands of satisfied customers. Please check our page which tells a lot about the customers we have served over the past 25 plus years in both videos and articles. We live and work here in Mobile and Baldwin County, Alabama. We go to church here. We go to school here. We volunteer here. We pay taxes here. We are part of YOUR community. We are your neighbors and we have been and continue to be, here for the long term.
We have much more information on our blog site http://www.servicemastermobilealabama.com and our other company site: http://www.svmadvancedcleaning.com. Our standards, and our adherance to IICRC designated training standards, are simply the highest in the industry.
Do not hesitate to call us, even to answer questions. You will be gald you did and we will shoot straight with you. If you decide to hire us, we will be grateful for the opportunity to serve you. We sincerely hope to be the kind of company that you want to deal with. Please check our "Differences" article: http://www.servicemastermobilealabama.com/Major-Differences-Among-Water-Restoration-Franchis.html, and our article entitled "Why ServiceMaster Advanced": http://www.servicemastermobilealabama.com/Differences.html. We are very proud of the integrity and professionalism of our personnel.
ServiceMaster ADVANCED, The Master of Disaster, (251) 653-9333 Mobile County / (251) 928-1028 Baldwin County. Make certain that you are calling, or tell your insurance company to ask for Enterprise number 7027. "We would be honored to serve you."