How do I Find a Good Builder?

You’ve got your PreArc sketch plans, you’ve chosen your preferred option and you’ve put your planning application in (should you need one!) Now to find a builder to turn those plans into a reality. Where to start? And how do you know which to choose? We’ve compiled a few handy hints below! 

  • Start by asking friends, relatives and neighbours for recommendations of local contractors or tradespeople who have done a good job for them. Tried and trusted recommendations reduce the risk further down the process. 
  • Web directories such as Checkatrade and My Builder can be a great way of gathering a number of interested tradespeople in a short time period. 
  • Always try to visit a potential builder’s previous work, if possible, and ideally try to talk to a previous client.
  • Aim to get at least 3 quotes for your project in order to more accurately gauge costs. 
  • Beware of very low quotes – interrogate the figures and don’t be afraid to ask questions. 
  • Quote too high? Let them know, your feedback will be valuable and they may be willing to lower if if they want the work. 
  • Be sure to get an idea of your preferred contractor’s workload. There’s nothing worse than a contractor over-committing to work and then disappearing half-way through your project to catch up on other jobs. 
  • Ensure that a comprehensive contract is in place before you begin the works. Make sure you fully read and understand this. Particularly ensure that you are happy with the provision in place should the contractor not finish your project in the timescale you specified.
  • Ensure there is appropriate insurance in place should the builder be unable to finish the works. 
  • Ensure that you are satisfied with the invoicing schedule and payment terms agreed with your contractor.