Should you hire a real plumber or just use your cousin? Answer below.
In most cases when you need a plumber, you need a plumber now, not some time next week. When you have water leaking or no water, you want results fast. This is the time you need to be the most careful and not just hire someone who may or may not know hot to fix the problem correctly, which will just create more and sometime bigger problems.
Plumbers that are licensed and those that are not.
Plumbers are like many other professions, where everyone has to start their training somewhere and some start by learning as they go. But, if you hire an unlicensed plumber and there are problems as a result of the way they have done your repairs, you may have nowhere to turn if a building inspector tells you the repairs are not done to plumbing codes that are in place for your area and the work will have to be redone. If those repairs were done by someone unlicensed or uninsured, you will probably be the one paying for repairs a second time. If you have to hire a plumber always hire someone who is licensed and is properly insured, in case they create more damages to your property.
What to watch for.
A professional licensed plumber will most likely not give you an exact cost of repairs over the phone without going to your home and making an assessment of your problem. They can tell you the cost per hour put cannot give you an exact estimate. If someone gives you an exact estimate without coming and looking at the problem you should be leery that you may be overcharged or more fees will have to be added to the estimate after the work is completed.
If you have what you consider to be a fairly significant repair to be made, you should try to get at least three bids for the repairs. Be leery of any bid that is considerably lower than the other two. A much lower bid should be a warning sign of a possible problem. Always ask if the bid includes the materials and the labor.
If the person you have hired asks for payment in advance of the repairs being made, be careful. It is acceptable to ask for a down payment if it is considered to be a large or expensive repair. Do NOT pay in full until the work is completed and inspected and passes local plumbing codes.
A licensed and insured professional plumber is usually a good investment. So, should you hire a real plumber?