When you’re looking for a pool contractor, there are a lot of factors you’ll want to consider. Price, budget, experience and reliability are all important to look for, as are valid contractor’s licenses and proof of insurance. Plus, you’ll need to research multiple contractors and compare bids. On top of all of that, you have to watch out for frontloading, which is an illegal practice in Los Angeles, CA.
What is frontloading?
Frontloading is the practice of taking either very large down payments or requiring payments for work that hasn’t been completed yet. While you should expect to make payments up front and as labor continues, paying for the work before it’s done could leave you in the lurch if your contractor abandons the project partway through construction.
You can spot frontloading easily when you interview multiple contractors and receive different bids. This should give you a baseline to compare what you might be charged and when—so if a contractor gives you a bid with an oddly large down payment or will require you to pay before the work is finished, you can decline the bid.
Many contractors will provide financing options. This not only helps assure you that illegal frontloading isn’t occurring, but the fact that they have relationships with banks is also a sign of a good reputation and longevity.
Other ways to ensure your pool contractor is reputable
When you interview contractors and receive bids, you’ll ask a lot of questions—and they should include asking about licenses, insurance and past work. Make sure that your contractor has a C-53 swimming pool construction license from the California State License Board, or is working with a reputable subcontractor who holds the license. In fact, if they’re working with subcontractors, you should research them as if they were the general contractor for your pool building project. They should have both liability and worker’s compensation insurance, which will protect them as well as you from liability should injury occur.
Checking a business’s reviews with the Better Business Bureau and other consumer review websites can be enlightening as well. If anyone has made complaints, you’ll be able to see if there’s a pattern or if it’s a one-time occurrence.
Finally, ask your pool contractor to put you in touch with former or current clients. Hearing about their experiences will give you a better idea of what to expect, and if their experience is one you’d like to repeat.
Avoid frontloading with a reputable pool contractor in Los Angeles, CA
Avanti Pools, Inc. is dedicated to designing and building stunning, luxurious pools and spas for our clients. Since 1999, we’ve been licensed by the California State License Board as certified pool contractors, and can tackle virtually any job or design idea you have in mind. When you’re ready to install your own backyard oasis, work with the contractors who can get it done right. Please reach out to us today to get started. We look forward to working with you soon!