Wallcovering installation and painting may seem similar, but each requires a very different skill set. If you need wallcoverings installed, it’s in your best interest to hire a professional wallcovering hanger to get the job done right.
Find qualified installers
Start by asking your friends, family members, and neighbors who installed their wallcoverings. Another resource is the Wallcovering Installers Association (WIA) search tool. WIA experts vet all members and limit membership to professional installers. You can also check with the Better Business Bureau to see if anyone has filed complaints against any installers you might be considering.
The bidding process
It’s important to get two to three bids for each of your projects. The bids should include comprehensive plans that estimate project costs based on material, labor, and experience specifications. Also, ask to see installers’ work portfolios.
In a bidding situation, it may be tempting to simply go with the lowest bid — but buyer beware. A low bid could indicate desperation. Also, it could mean something missing or unaccounted for in the pricing that could increase your costs down the road, or material or work quality issues. It’s OK to ask why a bid is lower than the others. You should also get specifics about things like cleanup policies and protection installers offer for your office equipment, furniture, or other items that will be in job site areas.
Many variables go into hanging wallcoverings. When exploring potential installers to hire, ask for their experience levels as well as
- how long they’ve been doing this work professionally, whether they received any vocational training, and if they’re accredited;
- whether they continue their training to stay updated on products, trends, and techniques; and
- if they’ve worked with the materials you’re planning to use and whether they’re knowledgeable about the variety of backings, adhesives, or other materials necessary to do the job well.
Before you sign the contract
Check installers’ references to make sure they did previous jobs well, within estimated bid prices, and on time. Ask about insurance: Professional wallcovering installers carry insurance for workers’ compensation, property damage, and personal liability. Contract details should include all materials and measurements, product brand names, total prices, payment due dates, cancellation terms, and penalties for late payments on itemized lists. Installers should include warranties in their contracts with the names of those offering each warranty and its deadline. Do not sign the contract if the installer doesn't complete it to your specifications.
Finding the right person to install your wallcoverings will take some time and effort upfront. However, it will be worth it when he or she does the job well and on time. Then you can thank your installer by recommending and referring him or her to others looking for a quality, professional wallcovering hanger!