Hiring a tradesman sounds like a simple task on the face of it, but if you want to do it right you might have to do more than you initially thought. You need to be happy and confident with your decision, and the tradesman needs to be happy and confident that they can complete the job to the standard required. Research and communication are the keys to achieving this.
Here is what you need to know…
Trust Them and Yourself
This is a person that you are going to let into your home. You need to know that you can trust them. The best way to do that is to trust your instincts. If something doesn’t feel quite right, that feeling is unlikely to go away, so every time they are there, you will feel uneasy. You need to be able to feel comfortable around this person, or the relationship is not going to work.
Speak on the phone, or meet them in person to see how you feel about them. Are they polite and respectful, do you think they are capable of completing what you need them to, and do they deserve your trust?
One of the ways that you can help build that trust is by checking their references. See the work they have completed recently and see what their past clients have said about them. You don’t need to just take the tradesman’s word for it either, do your own research and read reviews of their services online or through word of mouth.
Check Their Qualifications
If a tradesman is reluctant to show you their qualifications then you have cause for concern. Most tradesmen are required to be certified or accredited by the relevant organisations for their profession. The good ones will proudly display these qualifications on their marketing material. The not so good ones will try and hide the fact that they don’t have these qualifications.
Ask to see physical proof if you are in doubt. A qualified tradesman will show you the proof without question. Be aware that same safety certifications also carry an expiry date, so it pays to check those as well!
Agree On The Finer Details
To avoid confusion (and the potential for future drama), you should iron out the finer details of the agreement with your tradesman before any work begins. That way, you will both be on the same page and have the same expectations for the project.
The Job: The first thing to iron out is exactly what the job entails. What needs to be done, what materials are required, how much work will the tradesman have to do. Once you have those details, get it down in writing. When it is in writing, everyone is clear on the detail and you can refer back to it if there is confusion, or a long time has passed.
The Timeframes: Discuss how long the job is going to take, and what your tradesman’s availability for completing it is. Then see how that is going to work into your schedule. Do you need to be onsite to supervise or let the tradesman in, or is it a job where they can come and go when they have availability?
The Cost: This one always has the potential to end badly. That is why it is important to get a written quote so that you know exactly what your money is paying for. Then you can expect to pay more if changes are made, or if more materials are needed. Once you know what the cost is, you can talk about a plan for how it will be paid. Is there a deposit required, a payment plan option, or when is the invoice due in full?
Agreeing the details in the beginning lets both parties know what to expect and how the process will go. Without knowing the details there is definite potential for blowouts on time and cost, or the job might not be completed as you expected if both parties aren’t clear on the requirements.