9 Tips to Avoiding Shoddy Workmanship From Contractors on Your Home

Written by  //  July 8, 2011  //  Home Construction  //  1 Comment

If you are not in the business of tradesmen, and you don’t have friends in the business, it can be very difficult to get a good tradesman for work needed doing on your home. I, myself, have gone through the process where I needed help to install a new bathroom, which leads to many months of heart-ache and problems.For the larger businesses, they use contractor management companies to verify the credibility of the contractors they will use. But for the average consumer, what can you do? In this article, we look at some of the simple ways we can avoid poor workmanship before it happens.

  • Trade Membership. Not all tradesmen will be members of an organisation. You can always ask them if they are, and if they are not, ask them why. If they are working with larger clients, they will be involved with a contractor compliance agency. Although these companies are normally designed for larger clients who use many contractors, being registered with these types of companies is a good indication you are dealing with a reputable contractor.
  • Check their vehicle and tools. This may seem an overly simple way to judge a contractor, however, it is a very legitimate way to judge the viability of their business. If they are doing a good job, they will have the right vehicle and right tools to do it. An old vehicle and shoddy looking tools are an indication they are not reliable.
  • Payment Systems. If you contractor cannot take a cheque or bank transfer, and only wants to be paid in cash, you should be wary.
  • Contact Point. While many contractors in Australia will work from their mobile phone, they should still be able to give you a full address and landline number.
  • Testimonials. Most contractors get their work from word of mouth. They should be able to give you a full list of their happy clients. If they do not have a list of clients, or they can only provide one or two, again, you should be wary.
  • ABN Lookup. All Australian’s in business must have a registered Australian Business Number. This number is easy to look up online. There will be full details on the type of business, and how long they have been registered for.
  • Public Liability Insurance. The contractor’s Public Liability Insurance certificate is a good indication they are properly registered and understand the requirements of their business.
  • Previous Experience. Ask your tradesman did before he became the professional he currently is. How did he learn his trade, and where did he get his qualifications from? It takes several years to become competent and skilled at any trade.
  • Contract and Guarantee. Any skilled and reliable tradesman will be confident with his work. All details of the work should be outlined in a very clear and concise contract, including a guarantee of workmanship. If someone is not willing to guarantee their work, it means they do not expect it to last.

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One Comment on "9 Tips to Avoiding Shoddy Workmanship From Contractors on Your Home"

  1. local tradespeople September 12, 2012 at 3:21 am ·

    Thanks a lot for these tips! I’m going to remember these when I hire someone to do some work in the house.

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