Every day you’ll find people who go online and search for ways to avoid being overcharged by a plumber. So why do you suppose they actually do that?
One can find various reasons why people search for things online. Usually there will be something they need, a situation or need to be resolved and satisfied. The majority are motivated by one of two different goals: Pleasure Seeking (searching for gain, profit, pleasure, enlightenment, etc. or Pain Avoidance (wanting to avoid loss, illness, pain, liabilities, problems, etc.)
The searches on the ways to avoid being overcharged by a plumber will no doubt be made by individuals with both positive and negative motivations. This article takes aim at only the negative side. We’ll focus on “Pain Avoidance” and look at 3 things, points or mistakes you would wish to work hardest to avoid.
To recognize the overall circumstances in this, one must know that only a tiny percentage of the people offering plumbing services will overcharge or produce unsatisfactory work. The vast majority run decent businesses, will solve your plumbing problem and make a reasonable charge.
You might also want to know more of the specifics. One example is, a lady on a recent consumer alert TV programme, who was charged more than a week’s wages for unblocking her sink. It was a problem that it took the Plumber Narellan less than a minute to remedy.
O.K. What do we need to avoid? And why would we need to avoid it?
As soon as you know you must cope with avoiding hiring a rogue, so called “plumber”, then clearly you have to choose your plumber carefully.
Now then, here are the 3 things you should avoid:
First of all, make sure that the plumber is properly qualified. In the UK most plumbing includes work on gas heating systems, so you must make sure that the person is Gas Safe certified for the type of work he will be doing for you, and that the certificate is current. In other countries there are similar regulations to be complied with. The key reason for this is that the most important aspect is to be sure that the person holds the right qualifications so that he knows how to do the work safely.
How do I recognize how what qualifications he or she has? Just be sure to ask to see their certificate. The plumber should have a card showing their certification, and be willing to show it to you.
Second, make sure that you find your plumber by using a trustworthy source. Local paper classified adverts are not the best unless you have seen that plumber advertise for a long period. Yellow Pages could be argued to be much better as their premium advertising charges are quite high and you might assume that a tradesperson giving unsatisfactory services would not last long enough in business to want to pay that cost in advance. However, I think that the best recommendations come from asking friends and neighbors who they have found to be good.
And just why would that be? In my experience friends and neighbors are unlikely to recommend anyone who has not given them good services.
And the way to know what’s sufficient? Well, until the work is done and the bill is paid you won’t know for certain, but this is the best that can be suggested and it normally works very well.
Third and last (but not least), make sure you ask the price of the repair before the plumber starts work. For all but emergency and very small jobs it is best to ask for a written quotation before they start. The explanation for that is both people will know what is expected and the risk of a misunderstanding is reduced. You can, if adequate time is available, also obtain several quotes and choose the best one.