Handyman services aren’t difficult to find, but how do you know you’re getting the best service for your money?
When it comes to plumbers, there are some notable examples to avoid. This may include the daylight-robber who turns up in a sports car and charges hundreds for opening your main shut off valve.
And then of course there’s the dishevelled cowboy plumber who charges a bargain rate but leaves behind an unfinished botch job, driving away with your money never to be seen again.
Fortunately most plumbing companies are run by decent tradespeople dedicated to solving your problems and delivering efficient service. However, it’s worth looking out for specific signs to ensure you’re choosing a proficient and credible service, and not someone whose only interest is to rip you off.
Do They Have a Website?
A website can often be a good sign for many reasons. It can show that a plumbing company is established and credible, and not some crook who is about to run off with your money. It can also often provide extra information on what services they provide, how long they’ve been established and which areas they cover, all of which you can use to determine if they’re the right company for you.
Look Out for Trader Schemes
Trader schemes can show that a plumber is more trustworthy as it shows their work has been screened by a professional body in order to meet certain standards. TrustMark is one such scheme to look out for. You can also search for plumbers approved by your water company at WaterSafe. A Work Completed Certificate should be given to you as a contract to legally protect you.
Read Reviews and Testimonials
You may be able to look up reviews of local plumbers on sites such as RatedPeople. Plumbers may also have testimonials on their website from previous clients, which shows proof of good service. These are worth researching into.
Some companies may be able to give references on request if you can’t find any sign of reviews or testimonials.
If the plumbing company has a social media page this may also allow you to see how credible they are through followers and comments. Facebook has recently introduced reviews on business pages, although these aren’t always enabled by the page owner.
Personal Recommendations Can Be a Good Sign
The web needn’t be the only place to look for recommendations. If a friend or family member can suggest a local plumber that they’ve used and had good results from, this could be advice worth taking.
Meanwhile, if you’re having other work done to you house and other handyman services are getting involved, it could be worth asking these tradespeople if they can recommend anyone.
Builders, electricians and surveyors may be able to recommend a plumber that they’ve worked with in the past. Online testimonials and reviews can sometimes be faked after all (very rare and generally on small company websites), so you know you’re getting a real endorsement if it’s coming out of someone else’s mouth.
Get a Detailed Quote (and don’t pay until it’s done)
Before committing with any plumbing company, you should always first get a quote so that you know exactly how much you’re paying. If they can provide a breakdown of the pricing this could might prove even more beneficial.
Some companies can provide quotes over the phone, but generally it’s worth having a handyman service come in and survey the problem first. Be aware that pricing isn’t everything to go by and a cheaper company may be offering less services.
If possible, don’t pay until the work is done. This will avoid you being caught out by a shady tradesman. You may have to pay a deposit or some payment towards materials – this is fair and covers them against clients that may pull out at the last minute or refuse to pay when the work is done.
Do They Offer Any Guarantees?
Various incentives can be worth looking out for. This may include a discount price, a free quote or a guarantee.
Offering to pay your money back if something goes wrong within a set period is generally the perfect sign of a credible company – they’re dedicated to doing the best job possible and aren’t about to run off to Spain.
Some companies will even have a penalty clause that means that they will take off money if the work overruns.