While being a landlord may seem like a solo job that doesn’t require a team as such, this isn’t the whole story. Being a landlord involves certain responsibilities around your property such as annual maintenance checks and dealing with any break-downs. Unless you are a qualified electrician, plumber and a few other trades as well, you will need a team of professionals on your speed-dial to deal with these responsibilities.
What tradesmen will you need?
Finding the right team to work with you starts with knowing what kind of work you will need doing and who will need to do this work. One obvious one is an electrician who will be needed to conduct the annual checks on all the electrical appliances in the property as well as checking the electric mains and fuse box.
Plumbers can often do a varying range of jobs. This can range from something as simple as stopping a dripping tap to carrying out checks and repairs on the central heating systems. They need to be registered with GasSafe in order to carry out any checks on the heating system and to be able to conduct the annual maintenance checks needed as part of health and safety regulations.
In London and other big cities, there can be a lot of competition between plumbers, particularly in areas that are seeing a lot of development of rental properties, so if you’re looking for Wandsworth plumbers, plumbers in Fulham, or a Clapham plumber, you should have plenty of choice – just make sure you vet them properly and choose the right one.
Other types of workmen can do other odd jobs around the house and sometimes finding an odd-jobs specialist is ideal. This is the kind of guy who could come and put a new door on after an accident, replace a kitchen unit door or repair the bannister going up the stairs. Handymen is another name for these tradesmen and they are often qualified in various trades.
Choosing the right people
There are lots of ways to find the right people to work on your property. There are the old ideas, such as word of mouth – talking to people you know and finding tradesmen that they have had positive experiences with.
There are also internet versions of this idea, websites where people can leave their feedback for companies or individual tradesmen. These websites are impartial and show the good as well as the bad, whereas a company’s own website will only normally show positive feedback, for obvious reasons.
There are also a number of schemes to help people find the right tradesman. The Local Authority Assured Trader Scheme Network is one example, run by trading standards around the country. Businesses need to comply with relevant legislation and laws to be on the list as well as having an effective complaints procedure and good customer service.
Booking a job
Whether an annual check or a one-off repair, when you come to book a job with the tradesman who have chosen, make sure they give you a quote upfront, or at least an idea of costs depending on the work needed. Tradesmen giving a price over the phone can be a bad thing on some jobs, though many will have standard prices for standard jobs like servicing. If they are carrying out major work, such as renovating a property, then you might put a penalty clause into the contract if the work isn’t done on time, depending on how time sensitive the repairs are.