You are thinking of replacing the channel letters on your business’ façade. Because you know that it is a good practice, you invite multiple bids. Two come in within the same ballpark. One is considerably cheaper. Which should you choose? In fact, it pays to be careful here. But why be suspicious of low signage bids?
The One-Trick Pony
Some bids are ridiculously low because the contractor only does one type of sign. While you might have envisioned a halo-lit channel letter setup with decorative lightboxes, what you get will be a front-lit sign. Instead of at least giving you some options concerning depth, you get the same size sign everyone else doing business with this vendor receives. As a result, the finished product might be too large or too small for your building. Typically, this kind of contractor cuts costs by eliminating site surveys, customization, and extra material needs.
You meet with the contractor and you two get along great. The shop owner understands what you want in a sign. The problems typically do not start until a few days after you sign a contract, make a down payment, and place your order. The contractor calls to tell you that the designs are delayed. Later, you learn that there is a problem with getting materials, staffing, and installation dates. You see, the contractor is actually a salesperson. There is no shop that backs up the product. Everything – from design over manufacture to installation – is outsourced. Hand in hand with outsourcing come problems at those businesses.
The Unlicensed Liability
In this scenario, everything goes well until it does not. You learn that the contractor is neither licensed nor insured as an electrical sign contractor. Unless the shop outsources the installation, technicians have to come after hours and do the project on the fly. There is no inspection. You hope everything goes well, but there is no guarantee. If there is a problem, the shop just turns you away or forwards you a bill for damages caused to neighboring businesses.
Sometimes, a newcomer to the trade will offer to do a job for a very low cost. These professionals are trying to build their portfolios. It is true that everyone has to start somewhere. But do you want to have a newcomer cut her of his teeth on your sign project? We suggest being careful here. If this professional has undergone an apprenticeship with another shop, you may be able to trust the bid. Ask to visit the storefront and look for good-quality equipment. If there is no shop or things look bare when you get there, it may be better to pass.
Getting Your Signage the Right Way
So, why be suspicious of low signage bids? Easy! They cost you time, aggravation, and money. And, in some cases, you may have to call someone else to fix what the first shop put up. Avoid this problem altogether by selecting the right sign shop from the start. With High Value Signs & Studio, you know you are dealing with a full-service sign shop that holds the proper licenses and insurance. Call us today to learn more!