plumber shaking hands with home ownerMany consumers find it awkward to open their home to a plumber or other repairman. However, the better your communication is with your plumber, the more satisfied you will likely be with the outcome of the visit. Below are some simple tips from our plumbers in Laguna Niguel on how to communicate easily and pleasantly with your plumbing contractor:

Do Not Overreact

If you have just discovered a clogged pipe or a stopped up toilet, call a plumber immediately, but remain calm. If your home has other working bathrooms or you do not have to use the kitchen sink within the next few hours, do not call your plumber and demand that he or she show up immediately to deal with an “emergency.” Try to be level headed when problems occur and allow your plumber to prioritize tasks based on his or her professional judgment.

Do Not Try to Play Host or Hostess

In most places, even though the plumber is entering your home, he or she is typically there to complete a job and would rather get straight to work, rather than drink coffee or chat. Therefore, instead of offering refreshments or trying to make small talk, simply tell the plumber to feel free to ask you any questions, and otherwise make yourself scarce.

Be Realistic About Estimates

It is important to have a mutual understanding of what an estimate is, and it is just what the name implies; an estimate. All homeowners want to know exactly what to expect, but some contractors cannot give a precise quote based merely on your verbal description of an issue.

For scheduled projects, such as renovations that you planned in advance, it is perfectly acceptable to ask for a flat rate, but other types of repairs may differentiate somewhat from the initial estimate.

Ask the Appropriate Questions

If you are hiring a new plumber and you want to obtain useful information about the contractor’s level of experience, the best thing you can do is avoid yes or no questions. Instead, ask things like “how do you typically handle a situation like this?” Most experienced plumbers will be pleased to offer details when asked such questions.

Another great way to communicate about your specific plumbing problem and possible outcomes is to ask the contractor for best and worst case scenarios. You should also inquire about possible complications so that if something of that nature arises, you are not caught off guard.

Discuss Payment Schedules

It is always best to ask for an installment plan if the plumbing repairs cannot be paid for in one lump sum.  Many homeowners do not have enough money on hand to pay for a large job, and some plumbers will accept monthly payments for large jobs. However, it is imperative that you communicate your wishes in advance to make sure this payment method is acceptable with your plumber.

Plumbing problems can be particularly stressful, especially if they occur on an emergency basis. However, maintaining open lines of communication with your plumber is a good way to reduce this stress.