We all have different perceptions of what a good or cheap contractor may be.
Working within the industry and dealing with properties, you build relationships with contractors, plumbers, electricians, handyman, cleaners, the list is endless, but the key element is knowing the good from the bad and trusting your agent.
Its human nature to try and save money whether that’s on bills, shopping, food or day to day life expenses so we understand the same would apply when carrying out maintenance works on a property especially if it’s a large refurb. However, the cheapest is not always the most cost effective in the long run nor will the quality of work be up to standard.
We’ve recently re-let a property within the area which required works prior to a new tenant moving in. The landlord initially was very keen for Seekers to manage this as they are not based in the UK. Upon receiving the pricing, they decided to look elsewhere and move forward with there own contractor at a significantly lower pricing.
As you can imagine, this rang alarm bells knowing the level of work that was required vs the costing the independent contractor had quoted. Given the landlord had approved these works to go ahead, we accepted this but concerns were raised. Overall, the works were complete to a satisfactory standard and was good enough for a new tenant to move into in.
Two weeks into the new tenancy several issues were reported. Windows not closing correctly, basin taps loose, leaking pipes, kitchen cabinets dropping/falling, locks broken, bath handle broken the list was endless. As we have a duty of care towards the tenant and property, we had to ensure these issues were rectified as quickly as possible, all of which was replaced during the refurb of the property. The landlord was required to re-pay for all the above expenses again to ensure the property was safe and the tenant was living in a habitable condition.
You may ask, why did the landlord not reach out to the contractor who had completed the works to rectify this? Surely, it would be their responsibility to repair?
You are correct, it would be the contractor’s responsibility to fix these issues but, they were not contactable. The landlord had no response following several complaints, telephone calls, emails etc. They were not reachable in anyway. Cowboy Builders.
Hindsight is a wonderful thing and I’m sure the landlord would agree. Trusting your agent when it comes to contractors is one of the key things you can do. We will always ensure the works are completed to a high standard, dealt with in a timely manor and are price competitive. Should the landlord of proceeded with the initial quote provided they would have saved themselves thousands of pounds, stress and time.
Dealing with maintenance works is normal practice for the Tenancy Manager, we know the good from the bad and what will be best dependent on each individual property. Allow us to take control of the works, find the best contractor suited to the job, ease the stress which you as the landlord does not need and give yourselves more time to focus on other aspects of life. We are here to help and manage your home, trust your agent.
By Hayley Burgess