29 Jan 6 People Who Should Never Build Your Low Voltage LED Landscape lighting System
By Mike Gambino
You may have grown up with an independent attitude, always trying to do things on your own. The classic philosophy is that doing something yourself will save you money, but when it comes to Low Voltage LED landscape lighting systems, that may not be true. What’s more, it’s important to choose wisely from licensed professionals. Here are six people in or around Los Angeles, California who are likely to do more harm than good if you trust them to design and install your Low Voltage LED Landscape Lighting System.
Never trust a contractor or company doing another type of work at your home like landscaping or electrical that gives you rock-bottom prices right off the bat. landscape Lighting is labor intensive and highly technical work that cannot be done for pennies on the dollar. Quality Lighting materials that perform and last are never cheap. You’re much safer sticking with a reputable, experienced licensed specialized company then capitalizing on a special offer to get lower prices on work proposed by a generalist.
Fly By Night Contractors
No matter how talented and experienced a landscape lighting professional is, he or she isn’t telepathic. You should never trust a company that gives you a firm estimate over the phone or email without coming to your house to look at the project in question. Even if you know what you want, no serious company will make offers until they’ve inspected the property on their own to find out for sure what the requirements are and how much work and materials will be needed to do it. Typically these types do not offer maintenance or service agreements because they don’t plan on being around when your system after a short time requires expensive upgrades, repairs and replacements.
The Next-Door Neighbor
We all have a friendly fix-it neighbor, and while he or she might be a wizard with car engines or lawnmowers, a good neighbor should recognize the essential role a landscape lighting system plays at night in regards to safety, security and beauty and refer you to a professional. Anyone who isn’t truly experienced risks doing more damage and wasting your time. An offer of free repairs, nice as it seems, is likely to result in more time spent without a running system.
Low Ball Contractors
These types exist in all businesses also known as Up sellers. For example, someone comes into your home and says you don’t need the high quality, more expensive products. They even tell you that you can get away with using a lot less fixtures that others have told you that you will need to effectively illuminate your property. Basically they will agree with everything you say and tell you whatever it is you want to hear to keep the cost low so they can gain your trust and land the contract. Then once they get on the property it will become painfully clear that your purchase is totally inappropriate for your property and now that they are already on your property and have your deposit money you are at their will. These upgrades end up costing much more than hiring what looked like higher priced alternatives from the start.
They insist that whichever model nets them the most profit is perfect for everybody, which probably is not the case. We have all heard stories about the person that saved some money only to have to do the whole thing over later. As the story goes, the buyer ended up spending more to buy the less expensive thing because he ended up buying the most expensive thing because the less expensive thing failed to meet a need. There is a saying- “It’s unwise to pay too much, but it’s worse to pay too little. When you pay too much, you lose a little money – that’s all. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do.
The common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a lot – it can’t be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that you will have enough to pay for something better.” John Ruskin, British Philosopher, 1819-1900
Watching a video and risking electrocution is not worth saving a few dollars. Most people on YouTube are not trained professionals sharing their secrets. Even if you think working with electricity isn’t too dangerous, remember that DIY work could ultimately end up costing you much more time and money than if you hire a skilled technician. Inevitably, you’ll run into kinks and confusing jams and have to shop online for parts. You might get the system working, only for it to fail the next day. Don’t fall for the online product sellers pitch that this is an easy do it yourself project because they want to sell you the equipment. Buying the wrong parts online and getting lackluster results are frustrating and costly. Time is money, and you can save yourself huge amounts of both by hiring a confident professional with years of experience.
The New Kids on the Block
Has a new company in town opened its doors recently and not yet earned many reviews or word-of-mouth recommendations? It may seem nice to help them out, but now is not the time to lend business to an untested contractor. New system design and installation are the one case where you definitely want an established local business every time. Don’t be a Guinea pig and allows these newbies to experiment on your property. Caveat Emptor – Buyer Beware !
This landscape lighting blog is published by Mike Gambino of Gambino landscape lighting inc. all rights reserved. Mike is a professional landscape lighting system designer/ builder and has been designing, installing and maintaining landscape lighting systems for more than 20 years. Mike resides in the Los Angeles area with his wife and 2 sons. To visit his website go to www.Gambinolighting.com . To inquire about hiring Mike please click here .
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