Latest research from WaterSafe has revealed that recommendations by word of mouth to find tradesmen are more effective than advertising online.
The research found family and friend recommendations came out on top with nearly two thirds (63%) citing they find a trader through someone they know, the internet was then second most popular with just under a quarter (23%) saying they look online, surprisingly, 22% still use the Yellow Pages or phone book to find a tradesperson.
But with these findings comes the hard hitting truth that one in five of those who hire a trader through a family member or friend would trust the person completely and not ask for proof of qualifications or accreditations. This is despite WaterSafe’s estimates that rogue plumbers alone have cost the nation £2.6 billion in recent years.
Julie Spinks, director at WaterSafe, said: “While it is great to go with a tradesmen recommended by someone close to you, it’s still not guaranteed that the job they have done is correct and worse still they may not even be qualified.
“However, regardless of whether they have done a good job in your friend or family members’ home, consumers are still unaware that checking a professionals credentials is vital before any work is carried out. While experience is valuable, it’s all about their professional qualifications and skills set. After all, each year we continue to see truly gifted, hardworking installers enter the industry – and their talent must not be overlooked because ‘Joe Bloggs who did Nan’s sink was really nice’.
“We are urging consumers to look for the WaterSafe logo and ask about qualifications All homeowners need to do is go to www.watersafe.org.uk type in their postcode and they’ll find several approved plumbing businesses in their local area.”