With Sub Trades, as with all things, you get what you pay for

What do you look for when shopping around for a contractor or sub trade? Are you just looking for the lowest price? If so, we recommend that you rethink your strategy.

As a sub-trade, Vancouver Island Gutter sees many projects at various stages of completion, from repairs to renovations to new home starts, and the quality of the craftsmanship we’ve seen varies widely. Don’t get us wrong, there are many qualified, quality carpenters and trades people here on the Island and they do exceptional work for their customers. But there are also those who have jumped on the construction boom bandwagon solely for the purpose of capitalizing on the current trend, and many of them don’t really know their craft.

That’s why we here at VIG would like to encourage all home owners shop around and utilize the tools available to them when looking for a contractor or trades person. Below we have listed a few pointers that might help you determine whether or not you can trust a company or trade individual.

First of all, we know your eye is always on the bottom line, and well it should be, but don’t let that be the only factor in your decision making process. Keep in mind that whatever you are looking to have done to your home will need to last a long time, possibly the rest of your life and beyond. And while there are always some areas where corners can possibly be cut, you don’t want to compromise when it comes to using products that are quality and up to code, or people who really know their craft.

When looking for a contractor or trades person, we recommend that you:

  1. Check if the company or individual has a website or at least a Facebook or Twitter page. If not, you might want to ask yourself why. If they are a small one-person company, can they offer you any references?
  2. Are they listed in the Yellow Pages?
  3. Do they have any reviews on any of these platforms? What are other customers saying about their work?
  4. Always get more than one estimate. If a company’s estimate seems “too good to be true”, it probably is. And even though you may be tempted to save a whack of cash now, you will definitely pay for it later on. You get what you pay for with every trade, so if you are looking to save some money, go with the company whose estimate came in at the midway point. That way you can be pretty sure that they know their industry and are trying to stay competitive while still offering quality products and sound craftsmanship.
  5. Check with the Better Business Bureau. Does the company you are looking to hire have any complaints against them? Even if they are not registered with the BBB, they can still have complaints filed against them. On the other hand, not all good companies have taken the time to go through the process of becoming a BBB accredited member.
  6. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. How long has the company been in business? Are they a Jack-of-all-trades or do they specialize in one or two areas? Can they source the product/s you want or do they give you a story about only having one or two colours or styles available to them? And do they respond to your email or phone inquiries in a timely manner? 
  7. Do they offer any kind of guarantee or warrantee for their work? Don’t be afraid to ask their policy when it comes to issues that could arise down the road. Will they come back and at least assess a faulty installation and work with you to determine the next steps? Will they take responsibility for any faulty craftsmanship?

We hope these pointers prove to be helpful in your search for quality contractors and trades people to work on your home. To help you navigate through the process, we have now set up a Referrals Page where we have listed the contractors and sub trades that we have come to know as trustworthy. Just don’t expect them to be the lowest price.

Happy Holidays!

We here at Vancouver Island Gutter would like to wish you and yours the very best over the holiday season. We hope you find time with family and friends to reconnect and cherish what matters most.

We are open for most of December and available to come and do a free estimate for a gutter or soffit install on your home, all you have to do is give our office a call. However, you will need to know that we will be closed Dec. 24, 25, and 26 as well as Dec. 20, and Jan. 1 and 2 to celebrate Christmas and the New Year with our families.

We are quickly filling up our January 2019 calendar, so if you are thinking about having a new gutter system installed or replacing your soffit, the best thing to do is call us for a free estimate and book now. We are always here to answer any questions you may have and to walk you through the process every step of the way.

Remember, we offer a wide variety of colours for all of our products, quality aluminum and vinyl soffit solutions, and can help you determine whether or not you need to replace your fascia or how to direct that tricky downspout that has no rain leader. We want to make your gutter or soffit installation as pleasant and stress free as possible.

In the meantime, thanks for choosing Vancouver Island Gutter this year, and we hope you continue to do so in 2019.

Merry Christmas!

From the Vancouver Island Gutter team.

Ch-Ch-Ch Changes!

It’s been a busy year for the team here at Vancouver Island Gutter, and that’s all thanks to you, our customers. This is our second summer in operation, and we are delighted that Southern Vancouver Island residents continue to choose us as their go-to gutter and soffit installation company.

But changes are on the horizon. We are pleased to announce that Vancouver Island Gutter will soon be moving its home office. For you, the customer, there’s no need to worry. Our relocation will not have any impact on our current or prospective customers. We will continue to serve communities from Nanaimo to Victoria, we will just do so from beautiful Mill Bay instead of the fabulous Lake Cowichan.

We will continue to offer our free estimates, quality service, timely installation, and stay focussed on what matters most: you, the customer.

If you have any questions, or would like to book a free estimate, please give Tamu, our office manager, a call.

Thanks again for supporting our local, family run business by choosing Vancouver Island Gutter for all your gutter and soffit needs!

How to impress Dad with your soffit shop talk this Father’s Day

Did you miss our article in the Cowichan Valley Voice this month? Don’t worry, we’ve posted it here for your reading pleasure:

We all know that fathers like to talk shop, no matter what kind of shop talk they are talking. So seeing as Father’s Day is this month and the summer weather is upon us and your dad is probably thinking household maintenance, why not impress him by talking soffit?

Yes, I said soffit. You know, the aluminum, wood, steel, or vinyl sections that are installed between the outside wall of a house and the inside overhang of the roof? You might not know it (your dad probably does), but soffit plays a vital role in protecting a home from moisture, debris and pests.

Because you know that Dad has spent numerous hours improving his castle, here’s where you impress him with your shop talk.

Soffit, you tell him, is also a component in the overall aesthetics of a home’s exterior. The trick is to choose a product that is functional, low maintenance, will last, AND will add to your home’s external beauty.

Here he’ll mention that he has been wondering which product is the best. He’ll say he’s heard that Vinyl is cheaper (sadly, this is not always true—vinyl can cost twice as much as aluminum, you can tell him), and that steel offers superior moisture protection and longevity. Here you can nod and agree with him. Steel is much stronger, you can say, but if it get’s any nicks or scratches it’s prone to rust and will be hard to maintain. Plus it’s pretty expensive, you can add when he’s not quite persuaded.

At this point, Dad will probably tell you he’s been considering aluminum. Here’s where you can really impress him. Vented aluminum is supposed to be the best, you can tell him. It’s lightweight and durable, needs minimal maintenance as it won’t attract mold and mildew like vinyl will.

Here he might still look a little skeptical. You can add that unlike vinyl, aluminum will not get brittle in cold temperatures and crack and spit over time.

By this point, Dad will most likely be so impressed with your shop talk that he’ll probably suggest that you come and help him install new aluminum soffits this summer.

Oh, Dad, you’ll say—trying to think of any way to get out of this predicament, you shouldn’t strain yourself with that much work! Why not just let Vancouver Island Gutter do it?

Why Choose Seamless Gutters?

IMG_1750When deciding what kind of gutters to put on your home, you are faced with two choices. You can either go for outdated and unreliable sectional gutters or modern seamless gutters.

The difference between the two is that sectional gutters are made of smaller, roughly 10’ sections, joined together. Seamless gutters are made of a single piece of aluminum and are manufactured on site to the exact measurements of your soffits. The only joins you see with seamless gutters are in those areas that wrap around the corners.

There are several advantages of choosing seamless gutters have over sectional gutters.

Benefits of Seamless Gutters

Less maintenance: Gutters with joints are prone to debris accumulation. Leaves, twigs, and other such detritus accumulates in the gutters and can clog them. This accumulation can cause other problems as well. Quite often, pests and birds might choose to take up residence, and weeds can work their way into walls and adjoining structures. Seamless gutters are more firmly fixed, making it so that there are no chances of clogging and debris accumulation. This way, seamless gutters require much less cleaning and maintenance compared to the sectional gutters.

No leaks: Seamless gutters are joined and fastened together only at the corners and downspouts. This streamlined construction minimizes leaks and requires much less maintenance. Due to the absence of joins and seals that can erode or gather debris, seamless gutters offer far better protection to the property.

Wide variety: Seamless gutters are available in a wide variety of materials and colours to suit your requirements and preferences. From aluminum to copper and steel there are various materials in which seamless gutters are available (be advised that at this time Vancouver Island Gutter only supplies aluminum gutters). Because they are available in a variety of colours, you are able to choose the colour that best suits your home. Seamless gutters also come with baked on enamel finish, which never requires painting.

Made to measure: Seamless gutters are made to the exact measurement of you roof/fascia. This design ensures that your gutters serve you through years and offer best possible protection to the structure.

Better rate of return: Though you may initially have to spend more on a seamless gutter system, their low maintenance and repair costs mean they pay for themselves over a relatively short period of time and add value to your home.

Aesthetics: Seamless gutters look much better than sectional gutters, with all their joints and fasteners. Thus, seamless gutters protect the aesthetic appeal of your property.

Installing sectional gutters versus paying a gutter professional for seamless gutters:

Many people choose to install sectional gutters because they are looking for a solution that is both affordable and allows them to do the project on their own. Though choosing seamless gutters means you have to hire a professional to install them, there are many benefits. Seamless gutters last for years, they require less maintenance, and they are strong enough to handle the worst that winter has to throw your way. Plus, Vancouver Island Gutter provides a 40 Year Prorated Limited Warranty through Kaycan Ltd. for our customers and their seamless gutter systems.

So, if your gutters have been troubling you with leaks, clogging, freezing, and other problems, then you might want to consider replacing them with seamless gutters. Get in touch with Vancouver Island Gutter at 250-538-7714 and book your FREE estimate.