Dos and don’ts for home improvements in the new year

It’s a new year and the chances are you’ve been thinking about some of the ways you can go about improving your property. Whether it’s the kitchen, bathroom, living room or even bedroom, there are rules to follow and dos and don’ts to give great consideration.

Above all, you need to make sure in hiring the right contractor for the job because it’s essential to use someone you can trust.

Here are five tips for you to follow when it comes to home improvements:

Don’t hire the first company you speak to. Do compare prices.

How do you know what you’d expect to pay by not comparing quotes? By taking the first offer that comes your way you have no idea if you’re being ripped off or paying a fair market value. As such, comparing prices will help you to get the best deal as well so you’ll be able to save money on every improvement.

Don’t think cheapest is best. Do go for a company you trust.

It’s an old saying but it tends to always be true: You get what you pay for. If you think a price quoted is too good to be true, it probably is. Our advice would be to go for the contractor offering the middle ground in terms of pricing but always look at credentials too. Ask for references and even a portfolio of work.

Don’t just take someone’s word. Do your own checks too.

Whenever it comes to home improvements, what’s important is to ensure the company you choose is registered with the correct associations. For electricians this would be Part P, for boiler engineers, Gas Safe etc. It’s startling that 48% of customers don’t ask if the company is insured. You want to have ultimate trust in the company you choose. After all, it’s your money you’ll be spending!

Don’t just shake hands. Do get a written contract agreed.

What are promises if they’re not in writing? A verbal agreement will never stand up if there’s a problem in the future, making it crucial to get everything written down and signed. Be careful not to sign anything without knowing every detail first and ensure you’re 100% happy. Check for extras such as clean-up and VAT to ensure it’s included.

Don’t pay large upfront payments. Do pay in a timely manner as agreed.

Why would you pay for work before it has been completed? This will just leave you in trouble should any problems occur. With a rise in cowboy builders and rogue traders it’s crucial to ensure the work is completed to a high standard before parting with your money. Make sure any discrepancies are dealt with too, but always be sure to pay in a timely manner once finished.

Tom Crosswell

I have been managing online projects since 1999 and I'm a experienced marketeer, who is well versed in international brand management, online business strategy and developing long term relationships. Through my academic and professional background I am a specialist in generating online loyalty towards brands. My experience has taught me that ultimately business is about relationships and people. For more information see my Google+ page.

Follow Us