If you have a building project, however big or small it might be, the first task is to locate a builder to carry it out. There are various ways of locating an appropriate tradesman, including via word of mouth, advertising, both in the press and on the internet, and a variety of paper and online directories. All of these methods are likely to turn up a multitude of different tradesmen but not all of them are as reliable as the others.
Word Of Mouth and Personal Recommendation
This is undoubtedly the most reliable of methods. If you know someone who has personal knowledge of the builder that you are considering or, preferably, who has personal experience of the builder’s work, this is likely to be the best possible indication of the quality of the work that you are likely to receive yourself. Whilst not as reliable, you may also be able to find personal commendations on the builders own website if he has one or via a trade site such as Rated People. The bottom line is that members of the public, especially those with whom you are acquainted, are averse to making personal recommendations unless they have complete confidence in them, making this the first port of call when it comes to locating a builder.
The quickest way of finding a builder is through advertising. Local newspapers, directories such as Yellow Pages and internet searches are all likely to unearth a variety of building concerns, ranging from one man bands to major companies. When considering which of these to engage it is worthwhile remembering to ask them whether they have any examples of their work – photographs can be a great way of showing the quality of a completed job – and whether they can refer you to any previous customers. It is also useful to ascertain whether the builders are members of any trade associations, particularly those that are most relevant to the type of building discipline that you wish to be undertaken.
Many directories exist, through local trade associations and on the internet, that list builders who have expertise in different trades such as plumbing, roofing, electrics and painting and decorating. Once again, any information that can be obtained to add to your knowledge about the actual practices of the builder concerned will be invaluable in helping you to make your final choice.
Local Is Often Best!
One further matter that you need to consider is the location of the builders that you are considering. Unless you live an extremely remote location it is likely that there will be several builders who operate locally to you. Apart from the issue of cost, it can be advantageous to engage a local builder rather than one who is based further afield. One reason for this is that the builder will be on hand to deal with any urgent issues that might arise. Furthermore, a local builder is likely to be more concerned about preserving his local reputation than a builder who is based elsewhere – after all, the local builder’s livelihood depends upon his local reputation. Finally, you are much more likely to be able to obtain personal accounts of the builder’s work if he is a local one. Common sense will also dictate that if you are in the South West and need a builder you will look for South West builders.
Whichever way you decide to search for a tradesman to carry out your building project, the most important thing to do is to choose several different builders. You can then compare their prices, your view of their professionalism and reliability, their proposed timescales and the quality of any other work that they have completed locally. In this way, you are most likely to find the builder that is best suited to carry out your important building contract.