When choosing what company you should use for hanging pictures, mirrors, shelves, drapes, or anything else you may want on the walls of your home making sure it is done properly is very important.  Why?  You ask.  I’m just hanging something on my wall.  Isn’t a cheap handyman good enough? The answer is no, and here is why.

When installing anything on your walls any number of things can go wrong.  I’ve seen things as simple as improper height and placement, twenty extra holes in your wall that show, pieces falling off the wall and breaking, or even hitting water pipes that cause flooding and hitting electric wires that cause the power to go out in the house.  What do you think will happen when a cheap handyman that doesn’t know the first thing about hanging a heavy mirror drills right through the upstairs bathroom sewer drain pipe while installing a mirror in your dinning room.  I’ll tell you what will happen.  You will never see him again and be stuck with a sewer gas smell throughout your house and a large plumbing bill, or even worst your house will burn down from the electric fire started by the screw in your electrical wire he didn’t tell you about and just left.  One Art Installer/Picture Hanger was working in a large Hospital here in Houston and decided it was a good idea to drill into something metal in a wall before checking to see what was on the other side of the wall.  It turned out that the room on the other side was the electrical room and he was drilling through the back of a electric box.  He drilled the hole, hitting a high voltage power wire that melted half his drill bit and knocked out the power to the entire hospital floor for two hours.  So finding the cheapest person for the job is not the way you find someone to work on your home.  Your home is the most expensive thing you will ever buy.  It is the place you raise your children.  It is the place that provides safety and security for you and your family when you go to bed at night, and you want to let the cheapest person you can find come in that home to work on it.  That sounds like a pretty bad idea to me and it should to you too.  The saying “skilled labor isn’t cheap and cheap labor isn’t skilled” is true for a reason.  Don’t learn that valuable lesson the hard way when dealing with the most expensive thing you will ever buy.

So how do you find a good Art Installation/Picture Hanging Service.  First of all you want someone who specializes only in hanging things on your walls.  Someone who does it all day every day and nothing else.  Someone who has been doing it for at least a few years.  I’ve been doing it for 7 years now and I still make mistakes and learn something new about my job all the time, and I learned it faster than any other Art Installer/Picture Hanger I’ve ever worked with because I had a background in construction and carpentry BEFORE I became an Art Installer/Picture Hanger.  After two years I was teaching things to the guys in the company who had been doing it for 10 years or more because of my background.  Pretty soon I was the best Art Installer/Picture Hanger in the company.  The key is having the experience and knowledge to know what to do when things go wrong.  Just like when your working on a car, anyone can take something out and replace it on a car when everything goes perfectly and according to plan, but it takes a true mechanic to know what to do when things go wrong.  This is true for any trades man or business man.  Experience and knowledge beats any price difference in the end.  So no, the moving company who moved you into your house or that handyman that says he can do anything is not the guy you want. You want someone who is specialized in Art Installation/Picture Hanging.

Another thing to look for is someone who is insured.  Because when something happens you need to know that the problem is financially covered.  If you don’t you will most likely be footing the bill.  Most people you find in this line of work are not insured unless they are an actual company.  So don’t go with the cousin of the guy who mows your yard.  That will be a bad decision.  Not to say that every ones cousin does a bad job or is uninsured, but more to say don’t take that chance.

Another thing to look for is the price.  Don’t go with the cheapest person, but going with the most expensive isn’t always the best either.  I know a guy who charges almost twice what other people in the Professional Art Installation Services field charge here in Houston, and I wouldn’t hire him for anything.  Why?  Because I worked for him for years and he is very dishonest.  On the rare occasion I broke something or made a mistake that needed to be paid for I would call him to tell him and the first thing he would say is “Does the customer know yet?  Don’t tell them about it and see if they notice first.”  That’s not what I consider good customer service.  I also would hear about other employees in his company break things and denying it when questioned by the customer.  So remember to never go with the cheapest guy no matter how tempting it may be, but also don’t think the most expensive is the best either. While you do get what you pay for most of the time, find a price that is comfortable for you.

Another thing, and this is the most important thing in my opinion, is to talk to the person and ask questions.  If you get two different answers for the same question asked at two different times they may be lying to you and putting up a front.  Or if they tell you they are the absolute fastest guys out there they may be taking shortcuts and not hanging things properly.  So don’t go with those guys either.  A good Art Installer/Picture Hanger as been in the field for years and worked with many Interior Designers and Artists.  They should have a wide ranging knowledge about how and where to hang things.  They should be able to install many different things (e.g. pictures, mirrors, drapes, shelves, trophy mounts, t.v. brackets, etc.) and tell you about the variety of installations they have done through the years.  They should have experience installing in different types of walls (e.g. stone,  brick, stucco, cement, cinder block, wood, drywall, and fabric).  They should be able to install above fireplaces, in stairwells, over archways, etc.  If they can’t install things in an art niche 20 feet off the ground go find someone else.  Knowledge and experience are important for good customer service.  Remember that every job is different because every wall and piece going on that wall is different, so don’t expect an exact price over the phone.  If they do give you an exact price over the phone and don’t even come to look at the job first be wary because this person will most likely be inexperienced and are just telling you that to get the job without caring if it is done right.  You should be giving an hourly rate and a general estimate of the time it will take.  Any experienced and honest Art Installer/Picture Hanger will know this and answer accordingly.

And finally get references.  Anyone who has been in any business a few years or even just a few months and does a good job should be able to give you a few references.

So in conclusion here are the things to remember:

  1. Are they experienced and specialized in this field.
  2. Are they insured.
  3. Are they knowledgeable in this field.
  4. What is their hourly rate.
  5. Get references.

I hope this helps you in making your decision and gives you something to think about when choosing a Professional Art Installation/Picture Hanging Service.  May you have an excellent art installation experience and achieve the exact look you were imagining.

John Stuckey
Art Installation Professionals

Previous article