How to find a good builder

Nurseries can often struggle to find the right contractor for building improvement projects and often want advice on how to find a good builder. Our friends at the National Federation of Builders have given us some advice on how to find a good builder. We understand how hard it can be choosing a construction company to build a business expansion, maintain your existing premises, or build a completely new nursery.

You want a reliable service, a good price, and a result that will stand the test of time. The construction industry is riddled with red tape so legal and safety aspects can be time-consuming, costly, and confusing.

That’s why dot2dot has formed a partnership with the National Federation of Builders (NFB), one of the UK’s longest standing trade bodies that represents quality, reputable, builders, in England and Wales. The NFB’s Building Works Hub provides easy access to its membership of builders.

Any NFB contractor recommended by dot2dot, to carry out work in a childcare environment, has to be fully insured, compliant with all necessary health and safety policies, including Asbestos awareness, and hold enhanced DBS status.

So you need to find a builder, but where do you start?

The most important piece of advice on how to find a good builder is to find the right builder for your needs. The relationship you have with your builder sets the foundation for a stress-free project. It’s vital to take your time when choosing the right builder and NFB staff will read through your requirements and recommend companies that they know will deliver.
Below are some points that should be considered before choosing the right builder, for your nursery and more generally when you are considering making home improvements:

Start your search for a good builder
Are they are experienced in the type of work you want? Have they been referenced for their quality of work? Get a referral from the NFB. Ask the builder how long they have been trading and what experience they have in the work you need completing.

Do not be fooled by the badge
There have been a substantial number of cases of bogus builders fraudulently claiming membership of trade associations. When you go through the NFB, this risk is eliminated as they will only bona fide members will be recommended.

Once you have a shortlist of builders, obtain quotations
Get full details in writing of what is covered and what is not. This should include site maintenance, clearance, material supplies etc. Ask for confirmation as to whether planning permission is required and if they will need to apply for Building Regulations approval.

Avoid a ‘VAT-free’ deal
You will not have a valid contract if there is no proof of payment.

Put details of the job down in writing
The more thorough the better. Your contract should outline what work is to be done, start/completion dates, security, safety, the cost of the work and materials, payment plans, catering and lavatory arrangements, hours of work, cleaning up and disposal of waste materials.

Be straight about money
Agree on payment terms clearly in writing with your builder.

Ask if the builder is insured
Are they fully insured? They should have cover to protect them against property damage and personal and public liability to protect individuals and the general public in the event of an accident or injury. The NFB will only recommend builders that hold appropriate insurance.

Sourcing a builder can be a daunting process and the NFB works with dot2dot clients to provide guidance and smooth the selection process. Simply request your login details to the NFB portal via your account handler today.