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Don't be scared of your builder, says FMB
Published:  05 November, 2014

Homeowners who fear being ripped off by their builder should insist on a written contract, the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) has advised.

The Federation's warning was issued in support of Trading Standard's latest initiative to protect people from rogue traders, as part of National Consumer Week (3 to 7 November).

Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB, said: “Our own research shows that 55% of homeowners fear being ripped off by their builder, but if consumers follow a few simple steps, they need not worry. Always insist on having a written quote and contract in place before work begins so both parties know what is expected of them.

“All FMB members can provide their customers with a free written contract as standard and can also offer a warranty on their work once it’s completed.”

Despite advising homeowners not to worry, Mr Berry pointed out that wariness is advisable when it comes to builders falsely claiming to be a member of a reputable trade association.

The FMB logo stands for quality, which means not just any firm can join, he said. “All new members are inspected and must pass a number of checks in order to be accepted in to membership. We would encourage anyone who has doubts about a builder’s FMB membership to visit www.fmb.org.uk to check their status, and to report anyone using the FMB logo fraudulently.

The FMB also recently suggested that a drop in DIY activity among homeowners could lead to a rise in rogue builders.