Following up on Part 1, here are 4 more mistakes you can avoid when it comes to hiring builders in Chelmsford…
4. Not questioning the jargon you don’t understand
An astute homeowner questions everything about their building project, including the jargon featured in quotes, which they don’t understand. However, because you’re not a building ‘expert’ it’s easy to let things go unquestioned because you’re putting your trust in your chosen builder.
A quote from Grant Builders will contain costs for supply and fit or installation only (where the customer is providing the materials). Where we are supplying the materials, we will always quote for a standard item and then the customer can make any changes to specifications that they desire.
For example, tiles at £35 per square metre may be included in the cost, but a more expensive tile will obviously increase the cost on the quote. We try to provide as much detail as possible in our quotes, but there will always be specification details that will need to be added once you – the customer – has made key decisions.
Provisional sums are exactly what they say they are, ‘provisional.’ For some scrupulous builders, provisional sums are used as a means of making a quote appear competitive, but in fact it’s deceptive.
The price isn’t fixed, therefore subject to change, leaving you in the hands of a builder who estimates one cost, but purchases an item or materials that turn out to be more expensive.
5. Failing to speak to current clients
Asking builders to provide you with references of past clients is generally a waste of time as they will point you in the direction of customers they know were happy with their service and will say the right things. With that in mind, it’s likely that your builder will be working on a number of projects besides yours.
Therefore, it’s worth asking your builder for the contact details of customers currently using their service. Why? Because current clients are likely to give you feedback that’s less ‘artificial’ and probably far more useful because they will still be involved in the process.
6. Not establishing who you will be working with
This has become a pitfall for many homeowners hiring builders in Chelmsford. Most builders tend to have a team of labourers, which means one builder might turn up to issue you with a quote and you might be led to believe he or she will be the primary point of contact for the project.
However, on day one of your project they’re nowhere to be seen. Instead you’re left to deal with a team you’ve never had contact with before. You will be working with your builder for weeks or months, depending on your project, which means a close working relationship will be crucial to the successful outcome of your project.
Therefore, be sure to establish who you will be dealing with on a day-today-basis.
7. Being unaware of what’s not in the quote
If you’re in doubt about what’s included in your quote, the quickest way to get to the answer is to ask what’s not included in the quote. This is probably the best way to ensure that any of those forgotten fixtures and fittings actually make it into the project. Everything that’s included needs to be made clear from the outset.