Properties require constant care and attention to remain in top condition. Even if you’re comfortable with a tool box, there will be instances where you need to bring in outside help to complete a project.
But how can you be sure of finding a good tradesman? You can make sure you aren’t causing more stress and work for yourself further down the line by keeping these five things in mind when choosing someone for your project:
Reputation is everything
Testimonials speak volumes when it comes to choosing a tradesman. Websites can be modern, rates can be competitive, but no matter what kind of image a professional portrays, nothing is more valuable than a personal recommendation from someone that has previously used the tradesman’s services. Ask friends, family and neighbours. Check online reviews. If a tradesman’s reputation precedes them, you’re starting off on the good foot already.
Experience is essential
On the other side of the coin, experience is another key factor to consider when choosing tradesmen for your project. Even if somebody comes highly recommended, it could be from their first ever project. Choosing a contractor with ten years’ experience is most likely going to be a safer bet than someone straight out of college. The difference will be in the price, but imagine the expense of bringing somebody else in to fix an inexperienced tradesman’s mistakes.
Qualifications are more than just a certificate
Experience and reputation often reveal a great deal about a person, but sometimes any doubt can be swept away by good old-fashioned qualifications. A little bit of research into which respectable credentials to look out for can go a long way when choosing tradesmen for your project.
But even if you aren’t savvy with industry accreditations, organisations like Which? can be invaluable in helping you identify tradesmen to trust with your next big project. TrustMark approved and Which? Trusted companies are always a safe bet.
Ensure they have the relevant insurance
You may have chosen the most experienced and reputable tradesman, but mistakes can still happen, and damage can be caused. Make certain that the contractor you choose has their own liability insurance. It’s also imperative that you check your insurance policy covers this kind of damage, and your insurer is aware that you will be having work carried out. Legal cover may not come as standard on your policy, so always ask if you are unsure.
Payment terms should be clear
When on the lookout for a tradesman for your project, it can be easy to trip up on the small print. From day one, make sure your communication with the tradesman is absolutely crystal clear. Be certain of what it is they are signing on to do, and how much it is going to cost you. It may not be listed in the initial appraisal, but VAT can turn an affordable quote into a quite different figure when it’s added to the final bill.
Be sure to understand what exactly you are paying for: how many days of work? Does the fee include materials? Are there overtime costs? Any hidden fees? Get an agreement in writing wherever possible to use as a contract if you have to.
That should give you some food for thought. There are plenty of things to look for when choosing a tradesman for your project but, as long as you keep these key points in mind and both parties are 100% clear about the project and the costs, it should be plain sailing from here on out.
Accredited, reputable tradesmen are the key to a perfect home improvement project. Smarter Home 4U is Which? Trusted and TrustMark-approved, and our traders are experienced in a wide range of home improvement, repair and maintenance services. We are dedicated to making the process as stress-free as possible. Contact us, or call us on 0800 781 5292 or email firstname.lastname@example.org today to request a quote.