How to Hire a Commercial Glass Contractor
When it’s time to give your office an upgrade, you’re likely to research interior glass design options. Using glass in interior design has a variety of benefits, such as creating a modern look to your office while staying eco-friendly. However, we know finding the right contractor can feel like a daunting task. That’s why we wanted to create a step-by-step guide on how you can hire a commercial glass contractor for your interior design updates. In this article, we’ll walk you through step-by-step on how to hire a commercial glass contractor for your interior design updates!
1. Contemplate the work you’d like completed
Are you wanting a complete replacement for your glass, or do you just need to update the hardware? Do you happen to know what type, color, or size of glass you need? Having answers to these questions will help your contractor. Some contractors specialize in certain types of glass. For example, Kensington Glass Arts (KGa) primarily fabricates tempered and laminated glass. However, we can install any kind of glass through special ordering the products you need.
If you don’t have answers to these questions yet, that’s okay – that’s why many contractors offer design consultations. We’ll discuss what happens in a design consultation later in this article.
The next step is to begin researching who you’d like to select. Prior to contacting any contractors, it’s worthwhile to research the companies. It’s important to review the below questions to narrow down what contractors are willing and qualified to work with your business prior to contacting the company. When doing your research, create a document to keep track of this information. If any of the below questions cannot be answered on the contractor’s website, make sure to ask the contractor when you call or email them.
What commercial glass contractors service my area?
The first step is to find out what contractors are eligible to work with you. The best place to start is to find out what commercial glass contractors service your area.
Most contractors will list their headquarters and area of service on their website. For Kensington Glass Arts, you can see our locations here. Having locations near Baltimore and Washington DC gives us a unique opportunity to service many areas of business. Kensington Glass Arts also services businesses from Philadelphia, PA to Richmond, VA. If you’re not sure what area the contractor services, add this to your list of questions to ask the potential contractor.
What types of projects does the contractor usually take on?
Some contractors prefer to work in particular industries. Some commercial glaziers may stick to the tourism industry, the education industry, or other specialized sectors. Depending on what type of business you are, that may impact which contractors will work with you.
It’s also worth researching what size projects the commercial glass contractor works on. Even if you don’t have full details regarding the scope, you will likely have a general idea. Do you want just a few glass doors replaces, or are you wanting a full office renovation?
Kensington Glass Arts has worked on several types of offices and commercial projects. For example, we have worked on law offices, schools, scientific organizations, and more. Our teams have worked on projects of all sizes. Kensington Glass Arts has worked on full-scale renovations and small projects. We have several teams who are equipped to work on nearly any type of project you’re interested in.
What type of glass does the contractor offer?
While most contractors can install nearly any type of glass, it’s important to find out what type of glass the contractor fabricates. Fabrication refers to what glass is actually produced in the contractor’s facilities. It’s useful to know what type of glass the contractor fabricates in-house versus special orders for installation. Kensington Glass Arts fabricates tempered and laminated glass, but we can order a variety of specialty glass for your installation. If you choose a type of glass that is fabricated in-house, it will be faster to receive your glass. If you decide the glass you requested does not quite fit your vision, it’s easy to order a new piece of glass. In contrast, if you special order glass, you may have an interesting and individualized piece of glass. However, if this glass does not fit your vision it will be more time-consuming to order new pieces.
What certifications does the contractor have?
Certifications by certain organizations show that the commercial glass contractor has been recognized as safe, reputable, and efficient. For example, Kensington Glass Arts is ISO 9001 certified. This certification recognizes Kensington Glass Arts as a consistent and high-quality producer of glass. In addition, the Safety Glazing Certification Council certifies that businesses like KGa produce the safest glazing products possible. Kensington Glass Arts also has the North American Contractor Certification (NACC). This certification recognizes Kensington Glass Arts “adherence to industry-accepted guidelines for glazing contractors participating in the program.” Other certifications exist that showcase a company is environmentally friendly, safe, and other qualities. However, the ISO 9001, Certified Safety Glazing Manufacturer, and NACC are the most recognized and standard certifications for a glazier.
What kind of reviews does the contractor have?
Reading online reviews from other customers can help you determine how the contractor handles relationships with their clients. Online reviews can be found through simple research. Google My Business is one of the most popular ways to leave reviews. Reviewers can rate business from 1-5 stars and leave a text testimonial. For example, one 5-star review for Kensington Glass Arts noted that KGa has the “fastest turn around time for tempered glass around!”
Meanwhile, Facebook has a system where individuals can specify if they recommend an organization or not. These reviews can be found directly on a business’s Facebook page. In addition, they can provide some explanation regarding why they do or do not recommend the business. Take a look at this review left on the Kensington Glass Arts Facebook page.
Best company in that kind of busines!!!! 1000%Posted by Oscar Rosa Asesor Memorial on Friday, August 30, 2019
There are other websites such as Yelp or Angie’s List where you can find reviews. However, Yelp is primarily targeted to retail businesses, restaurants, and the tourism industry. Meanwhile, Angie’s List is primarily for residential contractors rather than commercial contractors.
3. Contact the Contractor
When you first contact the contractor, provide them with a general idea of what type of work you’re looking for. If any of the above questions are still unanswered during your research, these should be the first questions you ask the contractor. The contractor should be able to easily provide you with their service area, the types of glass products they offer, and any certifications the organization has. In addition, the organization should provide you with information about some of their projects of a similar scope so you can see examples of their work. To see some of KGa’s projects, you can visit our Success Stories page. Further, the contractor should provide you with a general quote for their services. This quote may increase or decrease in cost after you schedule a full design consultation with the contractor.
Schedule a design consultation
Let’s say that you have no idea what type of glass you’d like installed in your office. That’s when your contractor schedules a design consultation with you. In a design consultation, the commercial glass contractor will discuss the logistics of the glass installation. This will include what types of glass they will use, how long the installation will take, and a general quote. In addition, the contractor will discuss what look and feel you want your office to radiate.
Even if you have a general idea of the scope of work, the glazier may still request a design consultation. That’s because we need to take measurements to ensure we are fabricating the right size glass for your project.
Once we have determined the scope of the project, we will work with you to form an updated quote, schedule of installation, and any address any other questions or concerns.
Completion of work
During the design consultation, we will let you know approximately how long the work will take to complete. During this time, we may ask anyone who is not a part of Kensington Glass Arts to remain away from installation areas. This is to keep you and your employees safe. If you do want to enter the work area, we will ask you to wear a hard hat, boots, goggles, and a mask for COVID-19 prevention.
It’s important to be patient and trust your commercial glass contractor complete the job and even exceed expectations. However, you should be able to express your concerns to your contractor if any arise during the job completion. Your contractor should be able to provide you with status updates as needed regarding the glass fabrication and installation process.
After the contractor has completed the work, it’s a good idea to keep in contact with the contractor. For one, some contractors offer ways to protect your glass from future damage. For example, in the event of small glass projects (such as glass doors), we offer Service Contracts. Our Service Contracts offer scheduled preventative maintenance appointments. At the appointment, we will provide you with a detailed report regarding the status of your interior glass. Further, we can make any minor repairs as necessary during these appointments. If larger repairs are needed, KGa will offer you a discount on any items we need to order.
About Kensington Glass Arts
Kensington Glass Arts is a commercial glass contractor. We fabricate our tempered and laminated glass in-house and have field teams to assist with installation. For any small glass projects or emergency glass requests, our Commercial Service Division is happy to assist. If you’re interested in scheduling a design consultation with Kensington Glass Arts, you can find our contact information here.