to want just want a quote?!!(52 Posts)
I live in central london, and have now been trying for the best part of 6 weeks to get a quote for installation of an ensuite bathroom.
one trader i contacted - last week, then chased twice- told me today he can only come tomorrow evening (!), then maybe not until next week or the week after. maybe?!!
i've had two others around with no actual quote in sight.
am i being unreasonable or is this just how long it takes?!
This appears to be a modern thing . It's one reason why I take reports of "there's no work" with a pinch of salt.
Last year we were looking at getting some paving done. Out of 5 "reputable builders" only one turned up - and they gave a comedy quote.
One colleague at work made an interesting suggestion - only half in jest. He said hang around the Polish section of your local supermarket, and wait for someone who looks like a builder to buy something, then ask them .
Sadly this seems to be the problem in central London. I could not get a roofer, all too busy, never came out when they said, never called back… don't like coming into the congestion zone (even if I will pay it!). Eventually I resorted to getting someone from that rated people website - big mistake. And if you do get a quote, you will be shocked at how much it is!
Yes this appears to be a thing at the moment. DP and I would like to get a new bathroom and kitchen units sorted and following a load of phone calls to people on the Checkatrade site, most could possibly come round to give a quote in a couple of weeks but warned work is unlikely to start until June. A couple just out-right said they were far too busy even to give a quote.
If you're thinking of starting a business then building services in London sounds pretty lucrative right now
We're not in London (Midlands) but it's the same story. But remember - "there's no work out there".
I wouldn't trust Checkatrade any more than some bloke in the pub (personal experience). Remember who pays their wages (clue: it's not you).
Or RatedPeople ...
Have you tried using one of those websites like TrustaTrader or RatedPeople?
They work by charging the builders per lead that comes through, so they tend to be a LOT more motivated to follow up and quote, and won't accept the chance to quote if they've got too much work on at the moment.
Definitely not just a London thing. <bitter>
I don't understand this at all! We have a building job that involves a complete remodelling of a kitchen / dining room area and installation of utility room / garage conversion. Big enough I would have thought to be of interest to a builder, but can we get any one to provide a quote? Once they've spared the time to come round to assess the work, no quote follows and it is hard enough to get anyone to come round! Not in London but in Surrey. It is very frustrating.
Not in London but I posted a small decorating job on mybuilder.com on Saturday afternoon and had 5 responses over the weekend. Have had 2 people come round to give quotes so far and another one arranged for Friday. Don't know how good they will be but really pleased with how quick it's been to get quotes.
They work by charging the builders per lead that comes through
exactly. Remember, he who pays the piper calls the tune.
Had bad experiences with RatedPeople and Checkatrade members - would have been better off asking in the pub.
It's always been my experience too (also Surrey). Ring three to get a quote, one won't answer/return messages. Of the two that do, only one will actually turn up to do quote.
I wonder sometimes if there's some secret 'agreement' between them where they take turns to be the no-show so the consumer will definitely accept the only quote they managed to get, so the tradesperson is not 'wasting their time' quoting for jobs they might have to compete for.
I've had excellent experiences with RatedPeople
Probably because they've had to pay a tenner just to get through my front door to give me a quote, and know that my willingness to pick them hinges on them giving a good quote and doing a good job so they get good feedback from me.
What I've not had is people cancelling appointments, or turning up and then not quoting, presumably because they aren't going to pay the money for the lead and then not follow it up. Which seems to be the OPs problem.
YANBU. I'm so fed up of people not bothering to turn up, or coming and then never getting back to me with a quote.
Same situation in Kent - trying to get three quotes for a new bathroom is so frustrating. grrrr
so fed up too.
we contacted 8 builders, 5 have never even replied.
We're in SE London & it's the same story. We've been trying to find a plasterer to sort out our hall & landing for over a year. We've had people round who then don't bother to get back to us, I've taken time off so people can come round & quote & they just don't bother to turn up.
We had our bedroom done by a man we found on Checkatrade. He was awful, turned up late, didn't turn up at all one day, broke our burglar alarm, dripped paint all over the carpet.
We eventually had to pay another man to sort out his mess (and that one dripped wallpaper paste into the electrics & fused the whole house!!) Checkatrade didn't give a toss. I submitted a review of the first bloke & he replied saying he'd had flu & he'd told us that but we insisted he finish the work. A complete and utter lie. Checkatrade told me they couldnt retract his reply as it was 'my word against his" despite us having lots of texts from him, none of which mentioned an illness
Long story short, you're not alone, london seems to be particularly difficult. I hope you can find someone soon
And, if anyone knows a plasterer in SE London, can you let me know?
I tried RatedPeople for a flooring quote recently and the one response I got was from a joiner who had lots of reviews for fitting new doors, not a whisper of any flooring. When he came out to quote, he tried to pressure DH into agreeing to the work there and then, except that what he was suggesting was to do less than half the work we wanted and in a different way and, it turned out, at nearly double the price per foot of the next company we got to quote (we obviously went with them).
So I feel your pain, OP. It is a nightmare trying to get anyone to come quote at all, and then you're so grateful if they seem remotely sane/interested that you go with them when you've no idea if it's really a reasonable price or not, because they're the only one who's bothered to quote for what you want done!
I've had an electrician round who said he couldn't be bothered to put up a light fitting as it was complicated. I have to literally drag window cleaners round. Let's retrain!
My DH is a builder. To shed maybe a little light on this (because he is guilty of shying away from quotes occasionally)
We often find that after a dead quiet winter we will then get inundated with requests for quotes (not estimates: quotes) for jobs as everyone starts to think towards spring and sorting their house/garden out at the same time. Many of the requests are purely speculative (and many many more are not prepared to pay anywhere near the cost of a decent job with decent materials). Each quote (and remember we have to get a 'quote' spot on otherwise we loose out) takes DH a good few hours to prepare, (home visit, measure up, talk about needs and expectations, cost materials + labor, get it all in writing, send it out) and without a guaranteed job at the end of it he does 'cherry pick' the customers he thinks are least likely to quibble, or worse still, simply not respond to any paper work we've sent out which has meant a total waste of his time.
There is no excuse for making an appointment and not coming out though.
Well I had one experience with rated people and would never use them again.
I know other people haven't had a great time with it but I've only ever had good experiences with mybuilder.com. I do tend to get a fair few people over for a chat before committing to anyone, and I never go for a quote that's markedly cheaper than all the others but I've had some really marvellous tradespeople come through it.
Just for info; we're not on 'rated people' sites or anything like that. For DHs smaller jobs in the summer months word of mouth recommendations from happy customers are enough.
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