Trying to get a tradesman

Joey Shabadoo

My pronouns are "He", "Him" and "buggerlugs"
Sigh. It shouldn't be this difficult to get work done.

Example 1 - Wanted an outdoor plug socket installed, contacted 3 electricians/handymen online for a quote - no answer.
Example 2 - Wanted an outdoor tap installed, contacted a guy on Facebook advertising £50 fitted - no reply. Wife contacted someone on the Next Door App, he wanted £300.
Example 3 - Contacted a company for a quote about cleaning the gutters/car port roof - no answer.
Example 4 - Fitter for EV charging point due to arrive Monday 9am, got a text at 2pm saying he'd had bad news of a personal nature and had to go home.
Example 5 - Plasterer to fix ceiling where EV Fitter 2 put his foot through it due to arrive this morning. Just got a text to say his wife has gone into labour and he'll come tomorrow.

:sad:
 

Mugshot

Cracking a solo.
Sigh. It shouldn't be this difficult to get work done.

Example 1 - Wanted an outdoor plug socket installed, contacted 3 electricians/handymen online for a quote - no answer.
Example 2 - Wanted an outdoor tap installed, contacted a guy on Facebook advertising £50 fitted - no reply. Wife contacted someone on the Next Door App, he wanted £300.
Example 3 - Contacted a company for a quote about cleaning the gutters/car port roof - no answer.
Example 4 - Fitter for EV charging point due to arrive Monday 9am, got a text at 2pm saying he'd had bad news of a personal nature and had to go home.
Example 5 - Plasterer to fix ceiling where EV Fitter 2 put his foot through it due to arrive this morning. Just got a text to say his wife has gone into labour and he'll come tomorrow.

:sad:
It's a pain in the arse at the moment, the fitters I use (they don't only work for me) are booked through to March /April next year. One of my customers is involved in sorting out trades for sites across the country, says he came get brickies, chippies or sparks at the moment.
They don't need to bother quoting or turning up on site if they can't be bothered.
 

Beebo

Firm and Fruity
Location
Hexleybeef
My recent experience is that jobs are over running by weeks, materials are in short supply and labour difficult to find.

Political discussion is now banned but you can probably fill in the reasons. They start with B and C.
 

Electric_Andy

Heavy Metal Fan
Location
Plymouth
Yeah it's been really bad for the last year at least. I think so many people have wanted tradespeople over lockdown that they are so busy. It's also a seller's market so to speak, as in they all have plenty of work and I guess tend to pick and choose what work they want. My neighbour wanted a fence putting up in March and is still waiting
 

Electric_Andy

Heavy Metal Fan
Location
Plymouth
you can probably fill in the reasons. They start with B and C
Not necessarily all that; lots of people I've talked to have had an extension, driveway, porches done etc, and everywhere I've been on walks around the city there is scaffolding up and builders vans; on one road it was literally every 5 or 6 houses were having something big done.
 

Electric_Andy

Heavy Metal Fan
Location
Plymouth
I understand people being busy, it's mainly the not responding or being given feeble excuses that's annoying.
Yeah that's bad. Common deceny and customer service seems to have gone out the window. But I guess some of the less professional people aren't worried about repeat business, and therefore don't give a toss
 

Once a Wheeler

Senior Member
Far from a full solution, but this can certainly help:
https://trustedtraders.which.co.uk/
I'm not sure how much you can access without being a Which? member but my membership easily pays for itself every year.
 

Archie_tect

De Skieven Architek... aka Penfold + Horace
Location
Northumberland
I wouldn't use any trade without knowing them first or having a recommendation from someone I know... picking people from the internet is hazardous... especially 'Checkatrade' or or similar!

My preferred electrician and joiner are both doing up a house to rent out themselves so are too busy to cope with anything else.

Anyone good is booked up for months and will probably be 'til next year. Anyone free at a moment's notice [unless you know them and they can fit your small job in one evening] is best avoided.
 

newts

Über Member
Location
Exeter
I wouldn't use any trade without knowing them first or having a recommendation from someone I know... picking people from the internet is hazardous... especially 'Checkatrade' or or similar!
Checkatrade et al don't vet their tradesmen properly, just money grabbing barstewards (from the tradespeople)!
I have seen plenty of examples of very poor shockingly bad workmanship across the south of the UK from tradespeople recommended by trusted trades type companies over the last few years:evil:
There has been a shortage of competant trades people for many years, the upturn in both newbuild & domestic work over the last 18 months has compounded the situation further.
 

Drago

Flouncing Nobber
Location
Poshshire
Its easy.

I pick up the phone to my future SiL (mainly a sparky, but a trained brickie and water fairy too) and tell him he won't be marrying my daughter any time soon if he's not round within the hour, and magically he appears. I aleays make sure im cleaning my shotgun when he arrives, just for max psychological effect. He fitted our EV charging point and managed not to put his foot through anyrhing in doing so.

And Mrs D's nephew owns a building firm, and as my daughter also does his books he is similarly keen to please Unkie Drago on the rare occasions my trusty hammer isn't up to the job.

BTW, nephew is struggling to get materials because everything not bolted down is being sequestered for HS2, and theyre rationing contractors who arent working on it.
 
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Smokin Joe

Legendary Member
My recent experience is that jobs are over running by weeks, materials are in short supply and labour difficult to find.

Political discussion is now banned but you can probably fill in the reasons. They start with B and C.
The shortage of trades people is down to the big push to get everyone into "Uni" where they could spend a year or two working towards a degree in some non subject before dropping out and working in Tesco.

They'd have been better off (Especially financially) if they'd gone to college and learnt a trade.
 

Paulus

Started young, and still going.
Location
Barnet,
The shortage of trades people is down to the big push to get everyone into "Uni" where they could spend a year or two working towards a degree in some non subject before dropping out and working in Tesco.

They'd have been better off (Especially financially) if they'd gone to college and learnt a trade.
I believe this to be true. The kids, and parents have been brainwashed to believe that university is the way to go.
There has been a skills shortage for years as the economy has gone more desk based.
Sparkies, plumbers and building trades can earn a really good wedge, but they will graft for it. No desk jockies there.
 

Brandane

Rain magnet.
Location
Costa Clyde.
I feel your pain, @Joey Shabadoo .
My leaky, rusting (yes they're metal; that tells you how old they are!) gutters, facias, and downpipes badly need replaced. I began discussing this with a local roofer in March. A quote was given, and price agreed within a week. I'm STILL waiting!!! It's been too hot, too cold, too wet, too windy. Clearly he's having a different summer to the rest of the town. He's been struggling to get help to do the job (Covid), and he's been unwell himself at times. He can't get some of the bits needed (they're in high demand, apparently). I last spoke to him about a month ago, and was promised it would be done by the end of August. He's got 5 hours left; I'm not overly confident that I will wake up to nice new gutters and downpipes.
I feel yet another phone call coming on tomorrow. Trouble is, it's all very well trying to get someone else to do the job, but one tradesman in this town is as bad as the next.
 
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