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(Or, 10 Secrets which some Decorators may not want you to know!)
4. Never agree to pay a decorator “by-
5. For your own peace of mind, make sure that the decorator is fully and adequately insured for public liability. Imagine the consequences of no insurance if the decorator accidentally floods your house when removing a central heating radiator, or he drops a tin of gloss paint on your carpet or your newly laid drive!
6. Does your decorator guarantee his workmanship and materials? A fully professional decorator should supply you with a guarantee for at least 1 year against bad workmanship and faulty materials.
7. “If a job is worth doing it is worth doing well.” The cheapest quote is not always the best quote as many people have found to their cost. There could be compromises on the standard of workmanship and the materials used. You have to use your own judgement to decide who is the most professional. For example, was the decorator on time when he came to give the quotation? Did he appear interested in your project and your ideas? Did he inspire confidence that he would offer a professional service? Was his quotation professionally presented? One possible way to help you make a decision is to ask for references/testimonials.
8. If you require an insurance quote and the insurance company asks you to get two quotes they will normally accept the cheapest one. If you don’t feel comfortable with the decorator providing the cheapest quote then it will be in your best interest to obtain an additional quote from someone you do feel comfortable with.
9. You should always choose a decorator who specialises in decorating rather than someone who has too many strings to his bow. He may be a “Jack Of All Trades and Master Of None”, or he may be excellent at tiling or laying your patio but this does not necessarily mean he is excellent at decorating.
10. Is the decorator a member of a recognised association, such as the Painting and Decorating Association? If he is he will have to adhere to their Code of Practice which will cover most of the points above and on the rare occasion when something goes wrong you will be able to refer back to that trade association to sort out a dispute. If he isn’t a member of a trade association you may have no “comeback” if things go wrong. Also, if someone is a member of a trade association it signifies that they have some pride in their profession.
Assessed and approved by the
Painting & Decorating Association
M L Dixon
Painters & Decorators
1. Never pay a decorator “up front” at the commencement of a job for work that has not been carried out yet or for paint and other materials. You may not see him or your money again!
2. Never pay “cash in hand”. The cash will probably go straight into the decorator’s pocket and if so the decorator is in breach of Income Tax Legislation and possibly VAT Legislation. You could be contributing to the “black economy”. Always ask for a written invoice, then he is more likely to come back and rectify any defective work. Remember, without an invoice you have no proof that he did your work.
3. Always ask for a written quotation detailing the work to be carried out. A “quotation” is a fixed price whereas an “estimate” can vary and could cost you a lot more money. If any “extras” are required then establish the additional price before they are carried out, preferably in writing. If something isn’t written it can lead to ambiguities and upsets between you and the decorator.