As you become a more experienced renovator or builder, eventually you will build up a list of trades who you trust and can wholeheartedly rely on. Unfortunately, it may take a few 'frogs' to find your prince!
Throughout the build we have churned through a few various tradies on our hunt to find ones we can rely on. We have used a few friends, but sometimes it is easier to look for those you don't know as well. We have used hipages consistently which is a website that floats your request to relevant trades, they then bid for the work and will contact you to discuss the job and prices.
I wrote a little while back about looking after your trades, and of course this is important but they also need to look after you back. We have been making sure our trades all feel loved, they are paid on time, the fridge is always stocked and they have everything they need to do their jobs, so when we feel as though we are being taken for a ride it hurts a little.
We let go of our chippies recently because they were making it really difficult to work with them, Callum and I started avoiding site when they were there and every time I got an invoice I nearly burst into tears. They were charging by the hour and worked like snails, we had no idea the expense we were up against every week which made budgeting really hard. When we asked for a fixed price, things got a little heated because they thought we didn't trust them and continued to snowball.
Sometimes it is hard to know when to let go because you might have already come a long way together, or you feel that you owe somebody something, but at the end of the day it is your money, your time and your project.
I have learnt it is time to let go of your trades when you're feeling the following:
- you don't want to answer their phone calls because they are constantly bitching at you
- they are charging by the hour and work really slowly
- their invoices are questionable
- you are constantly being challenged by their decisions or they are questioning your instructions
- you have to repeatedly ask them to fix work
- they consistently don't turn up or you're constantly following them up
- they have no intuition and can't self direct on site (this one probably annoys me the most) - you are paying a professional good money, they should be able to offer suggestions and advice and keep themselves busy if you've instructed them properly.
It can be hard to know when to let go, but it will make your life so much easier when you follow your instincts and only have trades on site you can trust and rely upon. Our lives have certainly improved since we let go of the chippies, we now have this wonderful young fella who works after hours, he doesn't need constant supervision and is just generally lovely, honestly I feel like bursting into tears of joy when he is on site!
Follow your gut, it can feel like you are constantly being challenged sometimes, but trust me there are plenty of tradies around, take the time to find the right fit for you! When you do find a good one, make sure you look after them!