With the uptick in home renovations expected this year, bathroom remodeling is slated to be a busy activity for 2015. And whenever there’s a busy marketplace for a product or service, there are some people who are going to be ripped off. Make sure you aren’t one of them, by following these tips for getting comprehensive written estimates from several plumbing companies before you appoint a contractor to upgrade your water installation to match that fancy new shower head you want.

Scope Out Your Project

The first trick towards getting an accurate written estimate is to scope out the work you want to have done as thoroughly as possible. Most plumbing companies will prefer to have a detailed specification to base their estimate on, so the more information you can provide the better. Some of the questions your brief should answer include:

  • Are you going to require additional water inlets to your existing bathroom?
  • Will the changes necessitate extra drain installation?
  • Do you plan to maintain the same layout and install new fittings, or to change the layout completely?
  • What finishes do you have in mind, and will you purchase those yourself or should they be covered in the quote?

Identify Contractors to Quote

It’s been said many times that you should get a minimum of three quotes for any plumbing work you want to be done. This isn’t always essential, particularly if you have a strong relationship with a reliable plumber whom you prefer to use. If it’s a big job, however, it’s wise to get more than one estimate because contractors have different approaches to the work. Comparing “apples with apples” is a good way to make sure you’ve outlined your scope of work clearly and that you haven’t overlooked anything important, too.

Schedule a Consultation

There’s a reason why some plumbing companies offer free consultations on their websites while others don’t. Not every consultation is free, and if the plumber is likely to have to open a drain to see what work will be required to make your planned bathroom renovation work, he’s probably going to charge you for labour if nothing else. To avoid any misunderstanding, communicate clearly when you schedule the appointment what you’re wanting, and let the plumber ask you any questions that come to mind. He will then be able to tell you what he can do for free, and what will incur a cost.

Get It In Writing

We’d all like to think everyone is honest, and by and large, most plumbing contractors in Toronto are registered reputable companies. It’s difficult to compare estimates, however, unless you can be sure that each one covers exactly the same aspects of your renovation project. By ensuring that you get detailed, written estimates you’ll be able to query any significant differences between quotes and make sure that whatever contractor you choose knows precisely what you’re expecting.