When it comes to building, fixing, keeping tools clean and lubricated, WD-40 has you covered. There are so many uses for WD-40 that any builder or trader will likely have a trusted can in their toolbox.
Many people in the UK are choosing to have extensions or increase their living space, rather than moving, and these projects can be big undertakings.
These types of projects are exciting, but do your research and feel confident about your builder and any decisions taken.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions and feel completely confident you’ve made the right choice when you hire a builder; if you’re not sure how to vet your potential contractors, check our 5 essential questions to ask, below…
1. Have you completed similar building projects before?
A contractor who has completed a similar or identical project to what you’re looking for gives you reassurance they know exactly what is needed.
Ask about the property too; does the contractor have experience working on your type of property; the size, the materials?
How long have they been in business and are there any projects they’re proud of? You can then check their website (they really should have one in this digital age) or social media, to make sure the “about” page corroborates their story and shows examples of their workmanship.
Do you use any subcontractors on a consistent basis, and can you provide a list?
Most construction companies will use the skills and expertise of trusted subcontractors to help complete the job. Hiring trusted professionals in a particular field ensures that the quality of the work is completed properly, delivering quality results.
Does your potential builder have a list of regular ‘subbies’ they use, who they’ve worked with on other projects and who are fully insured/approved too?
Do you have safety procedures that you follow and are you insured?
Professional contractors will have set procedures in place should something go wrong; and they should know how to work safely, bringing their own safety equipment with them.
Bad contractors will be easy to spot when you ask this question – they’ll either not know how to answer or give short, quick responses or rattle off health and safety laws which they can’t explain when you ask them to elaborate.
Before you hire your builder, ask them to provide you with a current certificate of public liability insurance; ‘All risks’ insurance cover is even better. This will ensure that any accidents that occur are claimable under their insurance policy, rather than your home insurance or from you personally.
Will they protect your property when working on it? If they’re trampling through the garden each day, will they bring boards and covers so your lawn isn’t damaged? These are good questions to ask to get a feel for how the contractor will treat your home while working there.
What is the estimated timeline for completion?
If they give you a very exact timeline when you’ve not given them much detail or they haven’t completed a project like yours before, this could be a warning sign. It’s often very difficult to predict (and work to) a specific timelines, when information or experience is scarce.
Contractors should be honest, giving a rough estimate if they can and explaining why they can’t be more exact.
If it seems too good to be true or they can’t give you any indication of timings at all, consider them carefully. On the other hand, if they’re honest and can explain why they’re being so exact in the timeline, they could be the contractor for you.
Do you offer any kind of warranty? If so, what is the time period for the warranty?
An experienced builder anticipates that problems can and may well occur. A trusted builder should have a plan in place to take care of any issues which may arise, post completion, within a reasonable amount of time.
For more advice on finding a trustworthy trader, check out this article by Citizens Advice Bureau.