Some Contractor’s Just Can’t Say No

Some Contractors Just Can’t Say No – A Commentary by Jim Hicks

It’s amazing to me how contractors are diversifying their products and services that they offer to their clients in this down economy. I was just talking to a contractor that supplies and installs overhead garage doors. During our short conversation he told me that lately they were installing a lot of granite countertops and commercial lighting. So I asked him what experience he had in doing these kinds of things. He said “None, it is a learn-as-you-go situation but I just can’t tell anybody no when they ask me ‘Can you do this?’”.

Historically, contractors have always had a very hard time saying “no” to a potential client for fear of leaving money on the table, appearing inept or unprofessional when their prospect asks if they can perform a certain function for them. However, would you ask your dentist to give you an opinion about your car, business finances, or perhaps your physical fitness program?  Not likely, unless your dentist is a muscle-bound gear-head with a portfolio of 7 or 8 figures.

When considering hiring a contractor to do some work for you, do your homework beforehand! Make sure the contractor you are considering is capable, qualified, and experienced in that specific type of work.  Also, you want to make sure your contractor has the following:

  • A Contractor’s License
  • Liability and Workmen’s Compensation Insurance (in case there is an accident)
  • A permanent place of business (in case you need to go find them for any reason)
  • References from past customers that had the same type of work done
  • Lead, mold or asbestos certifications (only as applicable)

“What do you mean, ‘That isn’t up to code?’ What code?”

“No, we don’t need a plumber! I can do it, its easy! Anybody can do it!”


What do I need insurance for? It’s not like I’m going to do something stupid or anything!

Leave a Comment