How to Tell if you Have Found a Good London Builder

The building trade has a few bad apples like any other, but we suffer much more from the reputation that those few create. No other industry has suffered as much at the hands of so few, and it’s a problem that many are desperate to overcome. In an effort to help our fellow trades, we have put together this guide to finding a good London builder.

My London Builders are one such firm, and of course we want your business, but in an effort to stamp out the problems of our industry, we think it only fair we educate the you to the warning signs. We aren’t here to teach you how to suck eggs, but to help you make good decisions that preserves your property, and dignity.

The worry for many is that they employ a “cowboy” builder. One who does half a job, disappears with the money, does other jobs while working on yours and a myriad of other things. Once you get to know a little about the trade, you’ll realise that most London builders won’t do this, they can’t afford to.

All trades are largely dependent on word-of-mouth, especially during tough economic times. Reputation is everything, and it’s is only as good as the last job. For most London builders, it’s a matter of leaving the customer happy, going that extra mile, without leaving yourself short.

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A good builder won’t cold call, we certainly don’t. We don’t have time to, and most don’t need to. The good ones are always in demand and are always busy. So if someone knocks on your door purporting to be a builder, be nice, but turn them away.

A good London builder will also be happy to provide references. They will be proud of their work and won’t be afraid of showing it off. Don’t be afraid to ask for them, they are an accepted part of the process, and a good builder will be happy to share.

A good builder won’t be able to start right away. They will invariably be booked for a few weeks ahead. They may also have to double book and service to customers at once. They should be up front about this and tell you straight. Anyone who offers to start right away might not be the one for you.

No responsible London builder will ask you to pay up front. We may have to ask for a deposit for materials, but will never ask for all of it. The good ones will work out a payment schedule that runs throughout the project. That allows the builder to buy materials and pay workers, and allows you to keep an eye on progress.

Get it in writing. While not known for their writing skills, most builders are more than happy to provide a detailed quote in writing. They shouldn’t mind working to a contract either. Both of these protect the builder as much as the customer, so any reputable firm will be happy with either.

Jobs for cash. While tempting, most reputable firms won’t work for cash. We run a business, have an accountant to please, and tax to pay. Cash work is often more trouble than it’s worth. Stick to cheques or bank transfers. Any builder offering discount for cash might not be the right one to work with.

My London Builders is a solid, reliable firm that offers value for money and complete peace of mind. We would be happy to quote for your work, just give us a call or use the contact form.