House extensions: The Ultimate GuideLearn More
So, you have just been granted planning permission for your loft conversion, extension or basement revamp. Congratulations. Now, you need to start building. The problem is – it’s not easy to find the right builder. If you search Google, you’ll find hundreds, if not thousands, of builders. With so many options, it’s normal to feel overwhelmed.
We have worked with many good builders over the years and have some tips on how to find the right one. We hope this will help you to move forward with your project with confidence.
1. Customer service
Let’s face it, few builders offer a great customer service experience. To find a tradesperson willing to give that little extra care and attention to the client is a rarity.
As a rule of thumb, we only work with builders who offer quick and helpful customer service. Construction projects experience many ups and downs, and it’s vital that there is always someone on hand with whom you can discuss any potential issues. There will always be minor snagging issues towards the end. This end stage is where we believe great customer service really counts.
We only work with builders who are a part of an accredited organisation. For example, if a builder is a part of the Federation of Master Builders, you can rest assured that their work will be of high quality. If something goes wrong on-site with your loft conversion, the Federation steps in and arbitrates. So, there are rarely disputes and work tends to go much more smoothly.
All good builders should offer warranties. We are associated with some highly trusted and respected builders, who provide flexible and insurance-based warranties. They can be designed to your specific requirements and will give peace of mind, as you will be covered before, during, and after the construction phase.
It’s always a good idea to ask for references from builder’s previous clients. In fact, we call quite a few of these clients just to be certain that they are genuine. Sometimes, you may even want to go and see one of their finished schemes to see the quality of workmanship first-hand.
It’s vital that they have the required public & employers’ liability insurance. Some building companies will go the extra mile, offering ‘All Risk’ insurance, which offers top-level protection and extra peace of mind.
6. Project Manager
A good builder should keep you updated throughout the process. They should also have a project manager, who will report to you and bring essential details to your attention. They are responsible for dealing with council inspectors and will follow all required building standards and regulations.
Finally, and perhaps the most important step, the right builder should only request payment once you have agreed a specific stage has been completed to your standard. Never pay a builder in full, up-front.
We are proud to be associated with many excellent builders, whom we have worked with throughout the years. If you have any questions regarding a loft conversion or extension, or you simply need advice on how to improve your chances of obtaining planning permission, feel free to give us a call as we’d be happy to discuss your options. We will be able to move you through the many phases of planning and construction, calling upon our years of experience.
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