Not all contractors who do seismic work are created equal. Here are some important questions to ask before you choose a contractor to work on your home:
Are you a seismic retrofit specialist?
The safety of your home and family is too important to entrust to general contractors who “dabble” in seismic. At Oregon Seismic, we are seismic retrofit professionals with extensive specialized training and experience. We live and breathe seismic retrofitting … it’s all we do.
Are you insured to do seismic work?
Most contractors out there have basic insurance that does not cover seismic retrofit work. Insurance for seismic retrofitting is expensive and requires special qualifications. At Oregon Seismic we have the special insurance required and are fully bonded and insured for seismic retrofit projects.
Will I have to wait for months?
Many seismic retrofit companies have limited capacity, causing long delays for retrofits. A major earthquake could happen at any time … don’t put off your retrofit just because some company can’t schedule you for months. At Oregon Seismic, we generally have the capacity to get your retrofit done within a few weeks.
Do you take care of all the required permits?
Doing retrofit work without the required permits is illegal, and it’s also a gamble for you as a homeowner. At Oregon Seismic, we draw up all the necessary plans and obtain all necessary permits. This means that city officials review, inspect and approve our work at your home, for your peace of mind. Our work has never once failed an inspection.
Do you offer a price guarantee?
Some contractors bid low, then add on extra costs later on in the project. At Oregon Seismic, we go over everything with you at the beginning, and the price we bid for your project is the guaranteed final cost. The only (rare) exceptions to this are projects which require removing walls to access the foundation, where it is not known what is on the other side. In such cases our extensive experience means that we can educate you from the beginning about what possible obstacles might cost.
Are your rates reasonable?
A professional seismic retrofit of your home is not trivial, but neither should it cost a fortune. Our rates are affordable, and clients often tell us that our bids were the lowest they received.
Will the work be completed on time?
We’ve all heard about contractors who start a project, then go away for a week. At Oregon Seismic, we give you a start date and an end date. Our respect for your time doesn’t stop there. When you choose Oregon Seismic, you’ll appreciate that our staff returns your calls promptly and comes to appointments on time.
Will you provide an insurance company letter?
Earthquake insurance is very affordable, but it’s not available for houses that don’t meet seismic reinforcement requirements. That’s because insurance companies recognize that the retrofit itself is the best insurance of all. Upon completion of your retrofit by Oregon Seismic, you will receive a letter confirming that your home meets the prescriptive requirements for seismic reinforcement according to local and federal standards. This letter will allow you to obtain earthquake insurance.