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4 Things You Should Do Before Your Next Gutter Repair Service

Gutters are probably, for most homeowners, one of the most overlooked facets of a house.

While you’re reading this, you may be thinking to yourself that you don’t even remember the last time you had someone over to look at your gutters. And if this is the case, don’t worry.

It happens often.

But by continuing to keep gutter maintenance in the backburner, you’re essentially playing Russian Roulette with your home.  Because when gutters get clogged, they can’t do what they were installed to do,which is to avoid your house from flooding and water damage during heavy rainfall. If you have clogged or leaky gutters, you’re opening your house up to a myriad of potential dangers and damage.

Installation of gutter system
worker installs the gutter system on the roof

And what’s worse about gutters that are overflowing with debris is that this can also lead to further gutter damage. With all the wear and tear, over time,you may ultimately be leading yourself down the road togutter replacement. And what’s worse than a sudden gutter replacement cost on your monthly expenses? Not much. So this is definitely something you want to avoid at all cost.

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But before you write off any gutter damage as a need for an entire replacement of the system, you may want to evaluate if you can have them repaired instead. In this instance, you’d want to contact agutter repair company to do just that.

Below is a list of four things you should do before you hire a company to do your next gutter repair job.

  1. Inspect your gutters to try to understand the root of your problem

Before you hire a gutter company to come over and take a look at your gutters, it’s a good idea to first get familiarized with the problem at hand. Is a piece of your gutter hanging off your house’s siding? Is there a leak somewhere? Or is it something much worse?

These are all questions that you should come prepared to the call with so that you can have a more productive initial conversation with the potential gutter company you’re about to hire.

A trick to check to see if your gutters have a leak in them is to use a garden hose. Take your hose (not turned on yet) to the top of your gutters with a secure ladder. Place the nozzle of the hose inside the gutters at the farthest end from the downspout. Have someone who’s on the ground turn the water on at a steady level. Watch the water travel through the gutters from the ground and check to see if there are any major leaks that way.

The better grasp you have of the problem you need fixing, the more you’ll get out of the conversation with the representative on the phone.

  1. Come up with a list of questions to ask before you get on the phone with a gutter company This one catches a lot of people off guard for some reason. But if you think about a gutter repair as any other home improvement job, you’d understand why this is such an important step.

The last thing you want to do is get on the phone and not know what you’re asking for and why.

Some good questions to have ready to ask the company are:

  • What is a typical gutter repair cost at your company vs. a new gutter installation? Sometimes a gutter replacement cost now is a better investment in the long run vs. repairing old gutter systems frequently over the course of a few years.
  • How does your company charge for rain gutter repair jobs? Is it a flat rate fee inclusive of all labor and parts or dependent on any additional rain gutter parts needed?

Having a sense of how the company charges their rates and what the benefits and costs are of getting each job done is crucial for long term cost savings.

  1. Vet your local gutter contractors

This goes without saying that before you pick up that phone and dial the number of a random contractor you found on Craigslist, you should do a bit of research.

Good things to vet before you hire a contractor is to ensure that they have some sort of online presence.

Do they have a website that lists out their service offerings? Getting a feel for the company’s online brand and reputation is not mandatory, but definitely helpful. It’ll give you an idea of the type of team you’d be potentially working with. Even better if the company has reputable awards or reviews from previous customers.

Are they licensed and insured? This is self-explanatory. But you want to make sure you and your home are protected in the instance anything goes sour.

Are they locally owned? Usually locally owned businesses will put more care into the service they provide since they don’t have a large marketing budget to rely on for future business. Usually local referrals are the bulk of how these businesses generate their income. And so they’ll make sure to put in that extra touch of care and personalization to make sure that you’re happy with their services for any future business.

To check for locally owned and operated companies, it’s important to narrow down your search online. By typing in some variation of the service you’re looking for and the city you’re located in such as “gutter repair Syracuse NY” you’re ensuring that you’re getting relevant and local companies to then vet through.

Another great question to ask is- do they only specialize in gutter cleaning services? Sometimes companies will lean heavily toward external cleaning services vs. the gutter repair or gutter installation services. You’ll want to take note of that.

  1. Request estimates and quotes over the phone

Most companies will offer free quotes over the phone if you specify the exact service that it is that you’re looking for. This is why coming prepared with the things from steps 1-3 are crucial. By knowing all the information up front, you have a better chance of getting a more accurate quote for the service. Once you have a list of local companies and their rates, you can then choose which one works for your needs.

Gutter repair and maintenance can be a simple task that helps to prevent catastrophic consequences to your home if done regularly and properly. And by doing a little bit of preparation and due diligence beforehand, you can ensure that you are getting the most out of each service call.

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