Questions to Ask Commercial Painting Contractors in NYC

It’s pretty easy to find commercial painting contractors– you can simply ask for recommendations from your family and friends or scour the internet for a list of companies you can hire. However, finding an EXCELLENT commercial painting contractor that can provide exactly what you need is a whole different ball game.

In this article, we will teach you how to filter the good ones from the bad ones. Below are some of the most crucial questions to ask commercial painting contractors to help you narrow down your choices and eventually find the most suitable one for your needs.

1. Are you insured, licensed, and bonded?

You would want to hire a licensed painting contractor with at least the basic level of insurance. The contractor should have general liability and worker’s compensation insurance, even if it isn’t required by law.

Insurance is vital as it protects you, the client, from being held liable if an accident occurs on the job. General liability insurance policies include personal injury, bodily injury, and property damage. Meanwhile, bonds purchased by the painting contractor will cover the cost of your claim if something goes wrong during the project.


2. Who will do the work?

It is important to know if the commercial painting contractor you’re considering hires subcontractors to do the work or has a crew of in-house painters. Although there’s nothing inherently wrong with hiring subcontractors, you must be aware of the risks.

  • The painting contractor may not have conducted a background check on the subcontractors.
  • The subcontractor may cut corners and rush the completion of the project, as they are usually just paid a flat fee.
  • It increases the uncertainty that the subcontractor may not have workman’s compensation insurance.

If you choose to hire a painting contractor that employs subcontractors, ensure that the primary company carefully oversees the project. 

3. Can you provide some references?

Reliable painting contractors are proud of their work and will have no problem providing a list of past clients that you can contact to learn more about what it’s like working with them. Aside from checking their references, you might also want to ask for their portfolio or pictures of past projects.

4. Do you offer a warranty?

Trustworthy painting contractors provide warranties for labor and materials. Be careful of companies that avoid warranties by not giving you a  written copy of the conditions. So before closing a deal with a painting contractor, make sure that you will get a full warranty in written form and ask for key details such as the coverage, how long, and how is it funded.

5. Can you provide an estimate?

The painting contractor should be willing to provide a proposal that includes an estimate of the cost of materials, prep work, and labor. The company should also have a clear policy on payment terms, such as the requirement of a deposit before the commencement of the project.

Primary factors that can influence costs include the size of the project, time of year, types of materials, and prep work required for the surfaces to be painted. 

6. How long will you be able to complete the paint job?

The time it takes to complete the project depends on the scope and number of professional painters who will work onsite. A reliable painting contractor is one that is upfront with the timeframe for completion and sets realistic expectations.

It would also be good to know if the painting company can provide additional manpower if deadlines are tight. Other factors that may also affect how long it takes to complete work include the weather and condition of the exterior surfaces and interior walls and ceilings.

Red Flags to Watch Out For

Here are some warning signs that you should watch out for as you evaluate painting contractors for your commercial project:

  • Cost estimate is too low. If it’s too good to be true, it probably is!
  • Only accepts cash payments
  • Payment first policy or asks for a huge deposit
  • Difficult to reach via phone or email

Aside from checking online reviews, you can also research their complaint history using the Better Business Bureau’s resources.

Final Thoughts

With the sheer number of commercial painting contractors that property owners or managers can choose from, hiring the right company can be more challenging than it seems. However, asking the right questions before you strike a deal with a painting company can make all the difference.

If you want to save time browsing online for a reliable commercial painting contractor, you might want to check out Soho Painters. Besides commercial projects, their team of highly experienced painters can also handle residential painting, drywall installation, custom murals, and wallpapering jobs. 

Want to get a free quote? Get in touch with Soho Painters today and discuss your next project!