We know that most people looking to install replacement windows and doors in their home don’t ask companies for their contractor’s license number, but perhaps they should. A contractor’s license number is more helpful to consumers than it may appear to be on the surface, but only if you do a little bit of homework. Most people assume that the number just represents the fact that a company has registered their business with the state, and there is some reassurance of oversight by the proper authorities. While that is true, it represents so much more. Here are a few questions that can be answered about any replacement window and door company in San Diego by running their license number on the California Contractors State License Board’s (CSLB) website:
Is Their License Number Valid?
When you enter a company’s or individual’s contractor’s license number and hit “search,” what you want to see is a license status that is “current and active.” Some of the more unscrupulous replacement window and door companies will give you a completely fake license number, assuming you won’t take the time to look it up. However, more often, when a license number isn’t valid, it is because the company or individual let their license expire. If a license is listed as “inactive,” it means that the company is still licensed, but not legally permitted to perform work.
If a company is trying to pass off an invalid license number as a valid one, you would be justified in wondering what else the company is not being completely forthright on.
How Long Have They Been in Business?
By running a license number, you can also find out the date that the license number was issued and when it expires. This will give you a general idea of how long the replacement window company has been in business. If the license’s issue date is relatively recent, but the company claims to have been in business for many years, it may be because the company recently changed names or ownership, so be sure to ask for clarification.
Does the Company Specialize in Replacement Windows & Doors?
Some companies in San Diego that sell and install replacement windows and doors are specialists and do only that. BM Windows is one of those companies. Our employees install thousands of windows and doors every year. They are extremely knowledgeable about replacement window and door products and experts at replacement window and door installation, because that is all they do, every day. On our license detail page on the CSLB website, you will see that we are only classified as a “Glazing” contractor. Other San Diego companies who may give you a quote on replacement windows and doors are more general home construction companies, and installing replacement windows and doors is only one of the many services they offer. Under their classifications, other trades will be listed, like “roofing,” “solar,” or “general building.”
It is a matter of personal preference which type of company you choose to work with for your San Diego home. Some customers appreciate the expertise that comes with a company that deals only in replacement windows and doors, while others are looking for a company that can do a variety of home improvement projects.
Are They Insured and Bonded?
Make sure the company you choose is insured! If you hire a company without the proper coverage, you could be on the hook for the medical bills of any employee that is injured on your property. At the very least, you will have to make a claim against your homeowner’s policy to cover the costs related to the injury.
It is also important that the replacement window and door company you hire is bonded. Bonds protect homeowners if the company performs shoddy work, doesn’t finish the project, or fails to pay subcontractors and suppliers. The CSLB website will tell you if a company is licensed and bonded so you can have peace of mind, knowing that you are protected should anything go wrong at your home while your new windows and doors are being installed.
It only takes a minute, but checking the license number of any contractor you are thinking about bringing into your San Diego home is well worth your time. If you want to check our license, our CSLB number is 891637. If you have any questions, or want to learn more about the replacement windows and doors we offer for San Diego homeowners, please feel free to contact us.