Choosing a builder

You can search for builders who have been approved by Trading Standards on the Buy with Confidence website.

Basic precautions

There are a number of basic precautions that you should take whenever you are choosing a builder.

Where have they worked before?

Try and visit three or four of the builder's recently completed jobs and if possible, speak to the owners about the builder's work.

Obtain estimates

Ask two or three builders for estimates in writing. Check that all work is included. Do not automatically choose the lowest one. Having work done cheaply may result in shoddy workmanship and sub-standard materials being used.

Does the builder belong to a respected trade body?

Builders often claim to be members of trade associations. Contact you local builders association and ask for a list of registered members.


Ask to see your builder's public liability insurance certificate. Contact your own insurance company to find out if the work might affect your home and contents insurance.

Agree the work and put it in writing

You should make an agreement or contract in writing with your builder. It should include:

  • all work to be done
  • date of completion
  • security and safety
  • catering and lavatory arrangements
  • disposal of waste materials
  • hours of working

Please bear in mind any extra requests during the works may incur a cost at the end of the project.


Ask questions now, do not wait until it is too late.

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