As much as we would love to, and tell our wives and girlfriends, we have to be honest and admit sometimes we might need a little bit of help. Unfortunately, or fortunately for the sake of the house, we can’t do everything ourselves and occasionally we need to get in some experts. The art of DIY is one of the World’s leading hobbies and it can be challenging and pleasurable to have the self satisfaction of your achievement.
However, there may be some things you need to leave to a professional so here is some information you should consider before handing over your toolkit to an outside source.
Get Numerous Quotes
Asking around is one of the key factors in getting the best quote. Make sure you get estimates from at least three different builders. By doing this process you are able to get a clear understanding of the price range and then you can weigh up the options and make an informed decision. Be clear about what you want done and request written specifications and quotes. If you see a large variation in the size of the quotes, don’t be afraid to ask why.
Asking for Credentials
You can use recognised trade associations or regulatory bodies, such as the Federation of Master Builders, the National Federation of Builders or the Quality Mark Builders to browse for tradesmen. Members of the trade bodies does NOT guarantee quality but is a good sign of competence and reliability. Ask for pictures of some previous jobs they have done so you can see their work.
Be Sensible in How You Find Them
Most reputable tradesmen are too busy working to go door to door touting for business so it is always good to be recommended a workman by someone you trust.
Cutting through the Technical Jargon
Sometimes Tradesmen speak to you like you were a builder, don’t let your macho pride or shyness stop you from asking questions if you don’t know what they are talking about. Always make sure tradesman don’t confuse you with jargon and technical explanations or insist that the details are not your problem. A trustworthy and reliable tradesman will be able to explain what he means in simple laymen terms.
Don’t be shy and avoid discussing payment. Always be sure never to hand over money to a tradesman before the work has been carried out. The vast majority of rogue traders will normally request a proportion of money up front or claim they need it for materials – If they do be wary. If your job is quite large and it is likely to take some time, agree to a payment schedule that reflects the stages of progression from your tradesman.
This article was written in association with Yale. All Yale doors adhere to the strictest security regulations. Each Yale door ordered is accredited by Secured by Design, a UK Police initiative for safer homes. Guest post written by Sam Murray.