We’ve talked about the pros and cons of DIY before on this site, but what about local tradespeople? For those who can’t pick up a hammer without breaking something, booking a professional to come in and refurbish your bathroom or fix some electrical problems is often the best (not to mention safest!) option.
Still, it’s not as simple as that. There are potentially some serious downsides to booking tradesmen as well. Let’s start with those.
MoneyWhen you book tradespeople, you’re aware that it’s going to cost money. Sometimes it might be cheaper to do it yourself, but that requires knowing what the problem is and how to solve it. Even then, you’ll likely end up doing a much worse job than a professional tradespeople could — unless, of course, you’re a professional tradesperson yourself!
Sometimes, however, booking tradespeople can be cheaper. After all, if you don’t know what you’re doing, you can end up spending money on equipment you don’t need. That’s not just opinion either; it’s science. “The economics of scale” is an economic principle based on this idea.
So the real money issue isn’t how much it’s going to cost. Rather, the issue is not knowing how much it’s going to cost. Getting a reliable quote can be tough, especially online. Speaking of which…
Booking Local Tradespeople OnlineBooking local tradespeople online is often a nightmare. The websites are slow, they aren’t user-friendly and they don’t offer a full list of services. In the end, you’re often forced to ring someone up, which defeats the whole point of going online in the first place. Why is it that we live in a world where we can order anything from pizza to massages, to collectable Star Wars mugs online, but we can’t get someone to fix our sink?
Good, Local Tradespeople Are Hard to FindDo you ever feel like you just can’t get a good plumber anymore? Well, that’s not rosy-eyed nostalgia. In the UK, there’s something of a crisis when it comes to tradespeople. We want them and we need them just as much as we always have, but there are a lot less tradespeople than there have been in the past.
Uber for Local TradespeopleA lot of websites for booking tradespeople are terrible, but not all of them. Fixington is a website which acts like Uber for local tradespeople. You simply type in your details, tell it your problem and it will get you a quote. Nearby tradespeople using the Fixington app will be contacted and can come over to fix (almost) any issue — from dishwasher installation to lighting repair.
ProfessionalismYou get what you pay for. So, if you’re not paying anything, you likely won’t get much. Still, if you ever feel bad about your DIY skills, just check out these horrific DIY fails. You can rest assured that at least one person on that list is much, much worse than you are at DIY.
When you pay for a tradesperson, you know that you’re getting professionalism. However, that does depend on your scrutiny. Make sure that the person you hire is registered by the government’s competent person scheme.
Peace of MindIf you’ve ever bodged something yourself, there’s always that heart-stopping moment when you try to use it for the first time. Sometimes it works, oftentimes it doesn’t, and you’re never sure how long your haphazard fix is going to last.
By contrast, when you have managed to book yourself a quality tradesman at a good price, there’s often that feeling of relief when the job is done. If you’ve got the right person for the job using the right approach, you can sleep easy knowing that the job’s been done well.