Choosing a builder
When you need to employ trades people for your building work you should always consider your options carefully.
It's important because the Building Regulations place a duty on you to ensure your work is done to a certain standard. This may include demonstrating to us that your building works, noise reduction, structural engineering, thermal calculations, air pressure tests, and more meet the required standards.
- Prepare detailed plans and specifications before starting any building work. Seek advice from professionals.
- Get quotes from a minimum of three different builders.
- References about a builder (from family or friends) who have had work carried out can be a useful guide.
- Try looking at other similar jobs that the builder has done to see the quality of work.
- Make sure any contract and payment situations are clear, and that you know what you are getting for your money and when and how much you will be paying. Make sure you know what the builder has not included for.
- Make sure your builder has adequate professional and public liability insurance.
- Ensure you know what arrangements are in place for changes to the scope of the works, or if problems are found on site. Someone will need to pay for any extra work: is this you, or the contractor? What are acceptable delays?
While we are unable to specifically recommend suitably qualified tradespeople, here are some official schemes and industry bodies that would be able to help you.
Tradespeople operating to Government endorsed standards: Trustmark.
Local tradespeople who have given Trading Standards a commitment to good service: Trading Standards Approved.
Surveyors: Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.
Architects: Royal Institute of British Architects.
Builders: Federation of Master Builders.
Energy assessors: National Energy Services.
Structural Engineers: Institution of Structural Engineers.
Energy assessments and Energy Performance Certificates: Elmhurt Energy (this is a Local Authority Building Control partner organisation).
General help: Citizens Advice.