Updated: Jan 9, 2020
o The UK home improvement market is a sector that has many issues for both the consumers and tradespeople. The sad thing is these issues have never really been addressed. This has allowed the industry to continue getting a bad reputation, based upon bad experiences that both the tradespeople and consumers continue to suffer.
o One of the problems in this industry is the fact that it’s not regulated and this is where the rogue traders are able to take advantage of vulnerable consumers and make it difficult for the genuine tradespeople.
o The UKs home Improvement market has a feeling of uncertainty for both consumers and tradespeople as everybody has to put their trust in each other from the outset. This is where it can, and does go wrong because this trust is being abused by the dishonest people.
o This industry lacks transparency for both the consumers and tradespeople, making it difficult for them to know whom they’re dealing with and if they can really trust them.
o In this industry nobody is really accountable for their actions. In the event that anything goes wrong, both rogue traders and rogue customers are able to get away with it as there is no way to tell anybody.
o We have all read the press and watched the TV programs that show and highlight the problems in this industry by promoting the horror stories for consumers at the hands of rogue traders, but it’s a two way problem with rogue customers who are also responsible for ripping off the tradespeople, but nobody really talks about them.
o I believe that there are bigger problems and that is the tradespeople lack help, support, guidance, motivation, inspiration and education for what needs to be done in their business, but more importantly why. These tradespeople lack the tools to help them achieve their full potential in business and to increase their chances of success.
o I believe that both the government and federations do not do enough in order to solve some of the issues in this industry for both the consumer and tradespeople. It’s now time for change and we need to take a different approach in order to make these changes, allowing us to create a better and safer environment for both consumers and tradespeople.
o Even the justice system doesn’t work. In the event the consumer has been ripped off by a rogue trader or has been the victim of a tradesperson carrying out shoddy workmanship, trying to recover any monies or getting justice is a costly and time consuming exercise. You will find solicitors will take your money with no guarantees they will recover any money or even that justice will be done. In the event the tradesperson is operating a Ltd company they will simply close that company down and set up a new one, allowing them to have a fresh start and nobody will know a thing about their past which allows them to do it all over again.
o For the tradespeople, if the customer doesn’t pay, the tradespeople struggle to pay their bills and encounter cash flow problems in doing so. If the tradesperson takes them to court, it then costs them more money and if they don’t have any money to pay then they are given the opportunity to set up a monthly affordable payment plan. In the meantime the tradespeople still have to pay their bills, leaving them out of pocket.