The Village has discussed at a few council meetings the issue of unlicensed and uninsured contractors, paving companies, tree trimmers, etc. in the village. A few weeks ago, my husband and I found a company from Springfield to do some paving at our home. We asked for an estimate and the gentleman showed up that afternoon. He gave us a very reasonable quote and his business card. After he left, we began to search the company at the Better Business Bureau, the Attorney General and Secretary of State websites but could not find anything about this company. After reaching out to a few contacts to see if we were missing something, we found no mention of this company anywhere and this raised many red flags. I also had Chief Oelker reach out to his contacts. Nothing was found. So we chose another company to do the work.
Most of you can do this on your own, but the Village is going to help make this process a bit easier. Many communities have a registration for all types of these companies so that the municipalities are aware of who is doing business in the city or village. The Village Council has started the first reading for registering all general building contractors, plumbing, electrical, heating, piping, sewer building, air conditioning or refrigeration contractor, building tradesman, building repairman, tree service, paving contractors, or any other individual offering services for a fee. This registration will be a one time (lifetime) fee for a company/individual of $25. The Village office will keep this paperwork on file at the Clerk’s Office. This will allow a resident to contact the Clerk’s Office to see if the company is registered with the Village and allow the resident to feel confident that the company is actually licensed to do business in the state of Ohio. Questions regarding may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Here are some tips to help you when hiring a contractor:
1. Get Multiple Estimates (get written estimates so that you can see if you are comparing apples to apples; look at building materials, work methods, timelines, and be cautious of too low or too high estimates)
2. Hire Local, Licensed Contractors Whenever Possible (local contactors know the building codes for Logan and Champaign Counties and are easier to contact if problems develop)
3. Check Their Past Work (check their references and check with the BBB)
4. Check Their Insurance and Bonding (Ask for a certificate of insurance which should provide the name of the insurance company, policy number, and policy limits; if they aren’t insured, you may be liable for accidents that occur on your property)
5. Take Your Time Making a Sound Decision (be cautious when asked to pay a large deposit up front; read the fine print on all estimates and contracts)