We like to think we can trust people when they say they’re going to do a top-notch job in a timely fashion. Unfortunately those things are much easier said than done.

When it comes to a big spend like a kitchen remodel, which you’ll have saved up for, you don’t want to take any unnecessary risks. Unfortunately, there are always those who are looking for a quick scam and will do a poor job for more money that the parts are worth. These “cowboys” exist in almost every industry but we hear about them most in construction and interiors, think Rogue Traders.

So apart from getting a few estimates from different builders to find a fair price, what else can you do to avoid kitchen fitting cowboys?

Check out their real customer reviews

While a verbal estimate is all well and good, you should always make sure there is a paper trail. This will not only help if you end up in legal difficulties but will also help you to keep track of your finances.

All businesses will have an online presence so start by having a scroll through the reviews of your potential service provider. Find out if your self appointed kitchen and bathroom expert can actually deliver on what they promise. Of course, take all online review with a grain of salt, skim off the best and the worst to see what you are really dealing with.

This is a great place to find tip offs from previous customers and/or victims of a kitchen fitting cowboys. You can even check if they have any outstanding payment disputes using debt recovery sites like Still Due.

Get proof of what you are promised on paper or by email

Property experts and cash house buyers We Buy Any Home are in an industry renowned for its lack of transparency. Many fast house sale companies promise to pay their full initial quote but later deduct legal fees. We Buy Any Home don’t do that and encourage all users to ask for binding documentation that supports the work promised.

This includes getting paper or e-copies of quotes, receipts and planned work schedules.

Remember, if it comes to a dispute, you want to be able to prove what was agreed. For example, that a one week job won’t take 4 months and still leave you with an unfinished kitchen.

Be aware of possible hidden costs

Check their quote includes all of those hidden extra bits such as plumbing, gas and electrics. Think about what they will touching when doing the work.

Even if they’re quoting you for just putting in a couple of cupboards, think about whether that cupboard will affect other parts of your kitchen. Will they need to repaint a wall or do some plastering that they might then work charge you extra for?

Modern Worktops, a luxury granite and quartz worktop company, suggest shopping around if you’re not working with a bigger, more prestigious company. You should get at least three itemised quotes to compare and contrast to find yourself the best deal, but also look for any peculiarities.

Its likely that if one individual or company is quoting you much less than the others, they’re probably not the bargain they claim to be.

Your kitchen is the heart of your home. It’s not just a cooking space, it’s a communal and creative hub for family activity. You want the space to be perfect for your needs as well as safe - not a building site for months on end.

Diligent research will certainly pay off, so shop around and don’t get taken for a ride by kitchen fitting cowboys.

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