Damp Proof Specialists – how to choose
Damp Proof Specialists is a popular phrase in our industry. There are hundreds of companies offering similar services within damp proofing.
So, how do you choose a company that will offer you excellent service?
I have created this quick guide to help you choose the right damp-proof specialists for you.
As an established and respected operator in this field, we want all consumers to use a company that can provide an efficient and professional service, whether that is with one of our competitors or us.
In an ideal world, all contractors would be trustworthy and reliable. Sadly, we all know that some businesses are less than honest: providing a service that is not up to scratch and which lets the whole industry down.
We know this from our own experience as we are regularly called out to inspect work that has failed in some way, and the company in question has ‘disappeared’, refuses to return or has ceased trading.
Find the Right Damp Proof Specialists
To employ a reputable company you can trust, please follow our simple checklist:
Is the firm a member of the industry’s regulated trade association?
The trade body for our specialist works is The Property Care Association (PCA).
WE WOULD STRONGLY RECOMMEND THAT YOU USE A PCA MEMBER FOR ANY REMEDIAL WORKS.
The PCA is there to support you if it goes wrong. By being a member of the PCA, the contractor is demonstrating that they have certified surveyors and technicians in place and are audited regularly as to their customer service, health and safety, training and attend training courses and workshops.
Is the company regulated?
Check whether the company is Kent County Council’s Trading Standards Approved or a member of the government’s Trustmark scheme or a Which? Trusted trader.
These organisations all vet and regulate their members; therefore, membership indicates stability and trustworthiness.
What LOGOS are displayed?
I have looked up damp companies in my area, and many regularly display WORTHLESS logos. They are logos of a chemical company product or emblems of ghost associations that sell the use of their logo for a fixed fee; however, it means nothing.
Ensure the logos on the website demonstrate competency and are relative to the specialist skills and works.
Below are our membership accreditations.
Does Your Contractor have a good online reputation?
Websites such as www.checkatrade.com require specific standards from their listed contractors and also record feedback from customers, making it easy for you to check how the firm has performed for previous clients.
We would suggest you do a little research on the company put in their name in Google search, add “reviews” and see what comes up. It is worth taking that extra time doing research rather than making the wrong choice.
Is the firm a Limited Company and showing their Company Registration Number?
Check for yourself via the free service provided by Companies House, which can you can find via this link.
You will be surprised how many companies are still trading online and over the phone who, when you check, have dissolved or are in liquidation according to Companies House.
Does the company ONLY have 0800 or MOBILE contact numbers?
If the answer is yes, then you may need to be cautious. 0800, and mobile numbers are not locked to a specific location. So although they may offer you a free call, these numbers can also indicate a firm without a fixed base or address, the sort of company that can disappear quickly by switching to a different mobile number.
Many companies are “faceless”, and you have no idea who is dealing with your work. It can be hard to tell whether the company is a one-man-band or a micro business of 20 people. At South East Timber & Damp have worked hard to show you exactly who we are; we have pictures, write-ups, case studies, testimonials, and videos of us and our clients to help you get to know us before you make your choice. Be wary of companies who don’t show you who they are.
Has the company’s name changed?
Some firms may use one name and then pop up a few years later with a different but similar one, i.e. Kenny’s Damp Limited changes to Kenny’s Damp (Kent) Limited.
This scenario should set alarm bells ringing as, generally, it means the company has gone out of business and then set up again under a different name.
Try “Googling” the company to see what comes up. Or see what comes up when you type the central part of their name, such as “Kenny’s Damp feedback”.
By doing your homework and researching the market using these simple steps, it is possible to find a contractor who will not only get the job done but will likely be around for the foreseeable future if needed again.
Questions for your damp proof specialists
Once you have chosen your contractor, ask these questions before you proceed:
- Is the Surveyor qualified? Ensure that the person inspecting your property is qualified as a Remedial Treatments Surveyor (CSRT/CSTDB). Only this qualification shows you that the Surveyor has undergone rigorous training.
- If you require advice regarding below-ground waterproofing, then ensure the Surveyor is a Structural Waterproofing Surveyor (CSSW), as this qualification indicates exceptional knowledge in this specialist area.
- Are guarantees offered for the specialist works? Does the company provide a guarantee for the damp proof specialists’ work? For how long is it valid? If you wish, ask to see a sample copy of the guarantee. Read it over and ensure you are happy with the content.
- Can the firm offer you an insurance policy? Are you given the option to take out an insurance policy for an additional fee to cover the lifetime of the guarantee to cover the works if the company goes out of business? The best product on the market is GPI Limited.
Remember, a guarantee is worthless if the company has gone out of business – only PCA members can offer a GPI insurance policy that is valid even if they go out of business.
Ensure you have considered all of the above before you make your choice as to who should carry out a survey or work on your behalf.
Who Are We?
South East Timber and Damp Limited are a leading specialist company in mid-Kent, serving all of Kent, including Tunbridge Wells, Sevenoaks, Tenterden, Maidstone, South East London and surrounding areas.
Meet Dean & Annabelle Webster, Owners of South East Timber & Damp Limited
If you wish to find out more about our services, please email us at [email protected].
Want to chat in person? Call us: Sevenoaks 01732 884535. We are based in Woodchurch TN26
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