Discover How to Find a Good Reliable Builder

I make sure that you have seen and heard about a lot of the scary stories and disasters produced by so called ‘cowboy’ builders. It is so typical nowadays that they have even made a whole television series on the topic (Cowboy Builders – Five).

When you are considering carrying out improvements to your house such as an extension, loft conversion or brand-new garage, it is necessary that you find a good, trusted builder.

Well, it is a lot much easier than you may think. Essentially, all it takes is a little bit of sound judgment, a bit of research study and some clear instructions and if you follow our ideas listed below and you must not go too far wrong.

So how do you ensure that you prevent all these issues and go about finding yourself a great home builder who is not going to let you down?


Any respectable contractor will be more than pleased to provide you this info and so if you fulfill any resistance or reluctance at this early stage you ought to think carefully about whether you want to go any even more.

Ask for a list of half a dozen previous customers and contact them for feedback. If possible, set up to visit a couple of the clients and see the work for yourself, particularly if the task pertains to the work you require doing. At least you ought to request composed recommendations from the home builders previous clients.

You should constantly do some research to validate the quality of work performed by a home builder before employing them to do any work.

Look And Behaviour

In regards to behaviour, be very suspicious of any tradesman that will not devote to a schedule, will not put anything in composing and/or does not provide receipts. If they seem too excited to price quote rapidly and inexpensively without even appropriately looking at the task they are estimating for your suspicions need to be raised.

Inspect the look of the builder before you use them due to the fact that a ‘dodgy’ contractor will frequently dress shabbily, own a clapped out white van, typically with no markings and generally not stumble upon as very expert. It seems like a cliche however these things are the telltale signs of a ‘cowboy’ builder and you ought to guide well clear.

Work With An Established Local Company

Preferably they will likewise operate as a Limited Company instead of a sole trader, however this is not vital if the other things take a look at.

The reason why a regional services is more effective is that they have to protect their track record in the regional neighborhood because word quickly navigates if they do a bad task or let somebody down.

Mobile telephone numbers and e-mail addresses are non reusable so beware if these are the only techniques of contact that the tradesman will give you.

Correspondence on letter headed paper with all of these items listed is likewise a great sign of a real business.

A tried and tested method to prevent problems with your contractor is to deal with a regional company that has a recognized track record. This indicates that they will have a set office address, a business telephone number and if VAT is being charged, a VAT registration number.

Be Clear About Your Requirements

It is important that you do not keep altering your mind about exactly what you desire once the work has actually started as the builder will charge you additional for changes at this stage and this is where numerous disputes can start.

Certainly, often things will have to change and in this case you simply need to be clear about the modifications that you want and agree with the home builder any additional cost that this may add prior to the work is done. Again, you ought to record all changes in writing.

To prevent any doubt about exactly what you have actually concurred, put everything that you desire carried out in writing and request a written estimate back from the builder. Again, any great tradesman worth dealing with will anticipate this.

Other Points To Be Aware Of

Finally, be wary of anybody who comes knocking at your door offering to ‘do you a favour’ or has ‘materials left over from a previous task’ and can do you a ‘great deal which will save you loan’. Do not listen! It will never ever save you loan to utilize a builder in this situation.

On the subject of payment for the work, your builder may ask for some loan ahead of time but this need to be prevented if at all possible. A trusted home builder will just anticipate payment once the work has been finished to the concurred plan and signed off as satisfying. As a rule of thumb, you should never pay more than 10% of the total cost in advance.

If your builder demands all or part payment in cash then leave. You will be sustaining the black economy and leaving yourself open to the threat of handling a rogue trader.

In regards to agreements and agreements, the typical guidance in these circumstances applies. Do not sign anything that you have not check out and/or completely comprehended.

On a larger scale task, stage payments may also be required but, again, you should be clear upfront about what you are spending for and when.

What To Do If Things Go Wrong

If you still can not get a resolution after putting things in writing, you must seek more recommendations. Individuals that you could rely on are your Solicitor, the Citizens Advice Bureau, Trading Standards or the pertinent Trade Association. It really depends upon the nature and level of the issue or dispute.

If the contractor does not respond, the next stage would be to put your complaint in writing.

If things do fail or you are dissatisfied with the quality or degree of the work carried out, speak to the builder calmly and clearly and discuss why in the first instance.


On the subject of payment for the work, your builder might ask for some cash in advance but this need to be avoided if at all possible. A trustworthy contractor will only expect payment once the work has been completed to the agreed plan and signed off as satisfactory. It will never ever conserve you loan to use a home builder in this scenario.

If possible, set up to visit one or two of the customers and view the work for yourself, particularly if the job is pertinent to the work you require doing. At the very least you must ask for written referrals from the home builders previous customers.

So there you have it. If you wish to find an excellent, reputable home builder, do some research study before you begin, be clear about what you desire and put everything in composing and use common sense when it comes to agreements, contracts and payment.

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