The appointment of right contractor critical when refurbishing
Is your building refurbishment project a nightmare? Have you had a bad experience with a contractor? Appoint the right contractor to save hassles and…money.
When it comes to refurbishing your building, appointing the right contractor is critical. So says building refurbishment company, Indawo. The decision to appoint a contractor need not be a daunting one. Of course, you do not intentionally seek a poor contractor, after all, how do you know if one is reputable?
With the ubiquitous internet, all contractors look worthy of offering a good service, making the selection somewhat of a lottery at times. But, according to Indawo managing director, Geoffrey Jäck, asking the right questions will be good enough to identify the right contractor.
He says, “For reputable contractors, reputations are important and they will maintain these positive market perceptions.”
Appointing a bad contractor happens, and will continue to happen. Often, emotion drives the buying decision, and listening to contractors making unsubstantiated promises to secure a deal can be confusing. So, how can you check on a contractor?
Jäck suggests turning to industry bodies to confirm and check references. Reputable contractors are generally members of an industry body, maybe more than one. They subscribe to industry ethics and will not compromise on regulations and legislation.
Industry bodies play a key role in the construction industry. The Building Industry Bargaining Council Cape of Good Hope, is responsible for monitoring employment conditions in the industry. By law, all contractors must pay employees minimum rates as prescribed and contribute to minimum employee benefits. These conditions are gazetted in the Collective Agreement by the minister of Labour and is law.
Other industry association include the Master Builders and Allied Trades’ Association, the National Association of Managing Agents, the Roofing and Waterproofing Institute, Waterproofing and Roofing Association, Concrete Society, South African Property Owners Association and South African Facilities Management Association, to name a few.
“Appointing the right contractor is largely dependent on the type of project,” says Jäck. “Selecting a compliant contractor is critical, but choose a contractor with the right skills for the job. Painting, for example, is more complex than applying a coat of paint on a wall. Adequate primers, correct paint selection and correct preparation are critical for the success of the project. The key question here is which contractor has the skills and experience to complete the job, while being compliant?”
When it comes to building refurbishment, a wide range of skills are required by main contractors. These contractors should, ideally, have adequate project management skills and the right proficiencies to complete the job.
So, if you have appointed a bad contractor, what can you do about it?
Unscrupulous contractors are out there and landing up with one could be disastrous. Appointing one not on an industry body list does put you in a dubious position of not only possibly losing money, but also being liable for prosecution. Here, not much can be done to save you and you are destined for a long legal road.
But, according to Indawo, this is where industry bodies play a major role. Compliant contractors operate within strict guidelines. In the case of a member not providing services to industry standards, clients have some recourse through these bodies. Building owners can report non-performance and can expect a thorough investigation.
While this may not eliminate the need for legal action, it does mean contractors can be punished to safeguard the industry’s reputation. Indawo warns that the onus falls on building owners to ensure contractors are compliant with the law and operate within industry standards.
Jäck suggests following a vetting process to reduce the risks of appointing a “bad” contractor.
For more information, contact Indawo on 021 941 5000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.