Maintaining a functional home is quite challenging, and there’s only so much you can do by yourself. Whether something gets stuck, broken or needs a thorough cleaning, you need someone who you can trust, but this is where the problem starts. It’s difficult to find professionals who offer a high quality service at a reasonable price, but if you know where to look and what to look for.
Tradesmen in UK
When it comes to UK tradesmen, it can take a lot of time to find that one person who won’t try to con you, and who is capable of providing a great service. Unfortunately, each year there’s less and less trained tradesmen who are experienced enough to solve your problems quickly and without delays or mistakes. This shortage of skilled professionals brings us to the next problem – a significant number of rogues have started appearing, so even if you do get a tradesmen to arrive promptly, you can’t be one hundred percent sure that they will get the job done right, and that they won’t double the billing. This is why you need to be really careful about who you invite into your home. It’s important to find a way to sort out the frauds from real professionals.
How to Find Them?
Some people have a family handyman who’s been around for years – if you’re not that lucky, or if your handyman isn’t trained to provide you with a particular service, like a serious construction project, you’ll need to try and find a professional who knows what he is doing.
The first way to find a suitable tradesmen is asking around – if someone from your circle of friends and family recently had similar work done in their home, you should definitely ask about their experience. This is probably the easiest way to find a reliable person, because they will be recommended by a person you trust. If that’s not the case, you should go online. The problem with this option is that anyone can build a website that seems trustworthy and write their own recommendations which will be excellent. This is why you need to look for a tradesmen website that has a strong rating system, and which allows all customers to express their honest opinion.
The best thing about these smaller projects is that they don’t cost a lot to begin with, and they offer the best ROI, even when compared to large-scale kitchen and living room remodels, which have fallen out of favour during the recession and haven’t yet made a comeback.
What Qualities to Look For?
Even if you follow all these precautions though, no one can guarantee that you still won’t end up with a rouge in your home. If it comes to this, you’ll be able to recognise a fraud by trying to spot a couple of behavioural habits. No matter how long they were in the business, tradesmen rogues tend to be nervous – misrepresenting yourself means you need to play your part right, and this doesn’t allow you to be relaxed and worry free, now does it? Chances are your rogue will be nervous, edgy and impolite. This is what you need to do to make sure that this is someone that shouldn’t be in your home.
Ask For Personal Info
Before you start with the actual business, you need to get to know your tradesman. So, when you two meet, you mustn’t forget to ask for three things – full name, personal and company number and a legit ID. Naturally all of these things can be fake, which is why you need to call that company first and ask whether or not your tradesman works for them. If that seems to be true, you need to go through one more step – your tradesman’s ID must contain the name of a certain union, association or a network of tradesmen that they belong to, so be sure to look up their number and check whether or not that company and that particular tradesman is in their register.
Go Through References
This is another thing that can be easily faked – it doesn’t get much harder than asking a friend to write something for you, or as a matter of fact, writing it yourself. Legit recommendations have more than simple text in them, no matter if they are written online or on a piece of paper, so try to find an email or a phone number you can call to check things out.
People Skills Are a Must
Rouges or not, tradesmen need to be polite. The person you hire will be around your home for a while, and you definitely don’t want to spend time with someone unpleasant for that long. However, rogues tend to be a bit more anxious because they need to pay attention not to say or do something wrong every second, so this is one other thing that will help you see through them.
Establishing a Professional Relationship
Once you finally determine your tradesman isn’t a rouge, it’s time to do some serious business. Although all tradesman have a list of services that they offer, each particular job that they do stands out from the things on that list – it’s simply the nature of their business. Because of this factor, a significant number of contracts created aren’t quite successful – there’s so much room for misunderstandings. However, there’s a way to establish a professional relationship and end your contract successfully.
3. Can you do it by yourself?
There are a lot of DIY tutorials that show you how to complete all manner of projects with your own two hands. However, youíll certainly need some advice from the experts, as every house has a different structure, and these projects can get too complex for the average handyman. When you take the complexity of the work, the regulations needed and your own safety into account, it is better to leave this to people whose job it is to turn a simple attic into a beautiful loft.
4. Hire professionals and avoid pitfalls
Whenever youíre planning major home improvement projects, the safest bet is to consult the experts and get their informed opinion. You donít want to make a mistake and end up with an unsound structure that jeopardises the safety of you and your family, nor do you want your finances to take a big hit. Projects like this will raise the value of the house, but only if they are done right. So, donít take any unnecessary gambles and hire professional tradesmen, who will do the best work and help you avoid some of the potential pitfalls.
Loft conversion isnít an easy job Ė it requires multiple skill sets such as working with plumbing, electrical systems, etc. If something goes wrong, you risk wasting a lot of money. Thatís why youíll need to do a good deal of research on the people you are hiring. Our platform makes it easy for homeowners to find the right man for the job, so that they can get what they are looking for, without paying through the roof, no pun intended.
Here you can find all the information about their past jobs and projects, as well as plenty of reviews from previous clients that will give you an idea of how they do business. As you can inspect their full portfolio, you will have much better chance of making an informed decision than if you were relying merely on word of mouth.
5. How to use the brand new loft?
Once you have found out whether or not your loft is suitable for conversion, you will be able to decide what you want to do with it. Will it be a bedroom or a gym? A home office or game room? It is very important that you know what you want to do with your loft because of the electrical installations and plumbing. Your interior designer and builder should be familiar with your plans and there needs to be clear communication between all of you, so that they can find the best solution for your particular situation. As the loft is a very beautiful and isolated room in the house, you can make it a bathroom or a room for relaxing. It is also very good for home offices, as you can easily insulate the floors and walls, which will enable you to work without any distractions.
6. Things usually neglected when building a loft
People tend to plan everything, but forget about some important things such as loft stairs. Your contractor will likely give you some suggestions, but you need to get familiar with these things beforehand, so that you can determine what you like and what suits you best. Letís go through some of the most important points:
There is not much space for them, so they are really hard to design and build. They are tricky because they can take up too much space, which defeats the purpose of having the loft. Therefore, if you decide on a purpose-built staircase, then you need to send the design plan to a Building Control officer, who will need to approve it, as it is required that they lead to the hall and an external door. All in all, there are many options and depending on what you need, so ask your builder for detailed information.
Youíll probably want to install some new windows, which is a simple task for professional builders. However, when putting in dormer windows, youíll need a planning permission, as it is considered a roof extension. If you want to avoid these regulations, you can simply use a skylight.
The floor will certainly need soundproofing, as well as some of the walls, especially if you have a party wall. You should also consider the possible heat loss, and avoid it by using the recommended materials. When you invest in your home, you are actually investing in your future, and the future of those closest to you. Loft conversions are one of several great home improvements with an impressive return on investment, but you will need some professional help with the design and regulations. Make sure you have done all the necessary research beforehand, go through all the possible options and create a smart plan before taking on a project like this.