Although some floors can be installed by Vermont consumers, others should be handled by a professional contractor. In these cases, the installer would assist homeowners with product estimates, preparation of the existing floor, and clean up after the job has been finished.
There are many Vermont flooring contractors available for work by both commercial and residential customers. If you need to find a flooring contractor in Vermont use this map to get their address, phone number, and driving directions. Call to find out what their operating hours are and whether or not they deal with hardwood, vinyl, laminate, carpet, tile, concrete, or epoxy. These contractors may provide a variety of flooring services such as installation, refinishing, sanding, cleaning, and repairing.
Vermont does not require contractors to obtain a license, which places an extra emphasis on residents to thoroughly research installers before hiring them. Out of state corporations must register with the Vermont Secretary of State and that also is up to the consumer to verify. To check whether or not an installer has registered, the Office of the Vermont Secretary of State may be contacted at 802-828-2386.
Besides the above verification process, homeowners can request a contractor's full mailing information. Generally, it is not advised to hire an installer that is unable to provide references, phone number, and an address. Residents should contact previous clients, and talk with them about the reputation of the installer, as well as any negative feedback.
Problems with home improvement are included in the top ten complaint categories in Vermont. As a result, the state has developed a Consumer Assistance Program (CAP) to keep track of complaints and monitor fraud. Considered a crime, home improvement fraud is an offense that can be prosecuted in Vermont when the consumer files a police report.
Each potential customer is encouraged to make sure that a contractor is not listed on the Vermont Home Improvement Fraud Registry and to call the CAP at 800-649-2424 to see if any complaints have been filed. However, the website for CAP reminds home owners that an installer is not necessarily reputable just because they do not have any complaints filed against them, and a business name might have been changed to conceal any record of consumer dissatisfaction.
Complaints about contractors, which will become public record, can be filed online with the Vermont Office of Attorney General.
Following the suggestions of the Vermont Consumer Assistance Program (CAP), residents can avoid a home improvement fraud by not hiring a contractor who solicits door to door with referral discounts, or those that insist on large payments upfront. When a contract is signed, it is important that the homeowner has read and understands every page first, and that there are no blank spaces, omitted items, or unclear aspects to any section. The law gives a consumer three days to cancel an agreement, and that must be put into writing along with a complete listing of materials, time frame, and labor charges.
Down payments are normally made and it is in the best interest of the customer to pay as little as possible. Vermont does not have a law that prohibits an installer from exceeding the agreed upon estimate, as many other states do, and again, a clause in a contract can protect the home owner. No balance should be paid in full until all of the work is done to the resident's satisfaction.
Much of Vermont has what is described as "changeable" climates that are difficult to predict. Learning the characteristics of a floor is an excellent idea for a consumer to be prepared for movement or variation. Specific flooring is known to expand and contract along with the changing temperature and humidity levels.