The Federation of Master Builders (FMB) is warning homeowners and businesses in Northern Ireland who have experienced damage to their property after the recent floods to check the credentials of the builders they employ to carry out repairs.
Maire Devlin, Director of FMB Northern Ireland said:
"Many people will be in a hurry to repair damage resulting from this weekend's flooding but we would urge the public to make sure they are employing a reputable builder to carry out the work. Rogue builders will be preying on unsuspecting and sometimes desperate people who need to fix their homes and businesses quickly. These builders are often incompetent and may even leave the job incomplete after asking for payments upfront in cash before they start the work."
The FMB offers a free service to homeowners looking for a reputable local builder. The Find-A-Builder service can be accessed online or by calling the FMB on 08000 152 522. Alternatively, look for builders displaying the FMB logo - and if in doubt call the FMB to make sure they really are a member.
Do not choose a builder without following these simple guidelines from the FMB:
Ask for references. Speak to the builders and look at their work if possible, or speak to previous customers
Obtain quotes from three builders
Be clear about what you want done
Agree staged and final payments before work starts
Avoid adding to the job or changing your mind halfway through
Avoid dealing in cash
If any problems arise whilst work is in progress or you are unhappy about anything, talk to your builder right away.
19 August 2008