Archive for the ‘Home Improvements’ Category

5 Common Mistakes People Make When Renovating A House

Thursday, January 9th, 2014

Tips On Renovating A House

Many of us love to watch home improvement shows and become glued to our screens in fascination as we watch various builders transform an otherwise gloomy house into a  modernised, luxurious home. ..But is renovating a house really as straight forward as they make out?

Home Improvement Tips and Ideas   Benefits of renovating your home

The answer,sadly, is a resounding NO. We need to remember that these programmes are aimed at keeping us entertained. Even though renovating a house can indeed provide much needed extra living space or provide us with the house of our dreams, the stark reality is that unless the house renovation is carried out correctly, you can actually end up with a house of horrors as opposed to the house of your dreams.

So what are the 5 most common mistakes people make when renovating a house and what measures can you take to avoid them?

Renovating A House-Mistake #1 under estimating costs

This may seem a bit obvious but you’d be surprised how many people rush into renovating a house without taking the time to fully calculate the total costs involved.

Renovation work always costs more than you expect. The reason for this is that often extra costs are not known until you start the renovation work and you uncover unexpected problems.

Before you start to renovate a house, you need to carefully go through your proposed plans, including your specification for fixtures and fittings and allow an extra 10-20% as a contingency plan to allow for any unexpected extras.

To calculate your costs for renovating a house as accurate as possible try to find another person who is carrying out a similar renovation project to yours in order to try to get an approximate cost for the renovation costs involved, or alternatively you could ask a reputable builder to provide you with a free quotation for the work involved.

Renovating A House -Mistake #2 Ignoring Planning permission and Building Regulations

It is important to always check the current building regulations before you start to renovating a house.

Home Improvement IdeasIf you go ahead without complying with planning and building regulations, you could be asked to undo all of the completed work.

Breaching planning and building regulations when renovating a house can have serious consequences including an injunction if you fail to comply with the Party Wall Act or more seriously, legal proceedings against you if you alter a listed building without consent.

To avoid any unnecessary fines or delays, always consult your local authority for advice on the  current legislation regarding renovating a house. Or alternatively some  reputable builders  will be able to advise you on current building regulations.

Renovating A House -Mistake #3 Failing to stick to budget

When you are renovating a house costs can escalate very quickly if you do not discipline yourself to stay within budget.

When costing your project and deciding on your budget, it is important to remember to allow for all the materials that are going to be required for the whole renovation.

For example,  one common error that people make when budgeting for a house renovation, is that they overspend on the first part of the project often choosing top of the range items only then to run out of money by the end, meaning that they have not allowed enough budget for items needed to complete the house renovation,  such as floor or wall tiles.

In order to keep within your budget, try to find the best options to suit your budget. For example French doors cost half the amount of installing bi-fold doors , but they can still add just as much value to your property.

Renovating A House -Mistake #4 Living On A Building Site!

When renovating a house it can be tempting to live on site as you are on hand to oversee the project and can take deliveries, however there is a downside to this.

House Improvement and renovation tips

To begin with there is the safety side of things  to consider,especially if you have children and pets.

Also it can be difficult to “switch off” in your free time especially if you are hands on and providing help with the project.

With this in mind, try if possible to move out whilst the renovation is in progress. Or alternatively, if this is not possible, try to separate the part of the house where construction is in progress from the living area.

Renovating A  House-Mistake #5 Choosing the wrong people for the job

Finally the 5th most common mistake people make when renovating a house , (especially after they watch the various house renovation programmes on T.V.) is to fool themselves into thinking that they can do the work themselves .

Renovating Your House

Carrying out work yourself can indeed help to reduce costs, but be careful not to be too ambitious as you could end up actually slowing the project down ; either due to not having enough time to allocate to the project or through having to pay out for someone to rectify any sub standard work .

When you decide to renovate a property it’s important to remember that less is not always more. Take time to choose a reputable builder; someone who can provide you with examples of any similar renovation projects that they have undertaken.

It is not wise to simply choose a builder based on the lowest quote as in the long run it could end up costing you more for a number of reasons including;

Some builders provide a cheap quote knowing full well that they will need to bill you for extras during the project. They are aware that once the project has commenced,you will be so desperate for it to be completed, that you will therefore have no choice but to pay for the extras in order for it to be completed.

If you employ rogue builders” when renovating a house, there is a real danger that you could end up having to pay for a reputable builder to correct the work in order for it to pass inspection.

 So if you are considering renovating a house, take care to plan well and to appoint an experienced builder.

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Into the breach – why the best-laid plans still need permission!

Friday, July 12th, 2013

Home Improvements – Planning Permission – get it right!

It seems that the proof isn’t so much in the pudding as in the planning when it comes to a spot of home improvement!

Homeowners in the UK have shelled out more than £6bn on unauthorised home improvements in the last five years, with one in 10 bending the rules to get thehouse of their dreams.

Home Improvements Cardiff

Insurance firm LV= has discovered that home improvements in a tenth of homes in the UK contravene building regulations, from simple drainage projects to complete house renovations.

Home Improvements-Check Planning Permission and Building Regs

Builders and surveyors claim that building regs are commonly being flouted, with a staggering 26% of those surveyed saying they had seen extensions where a breach had occurred. One in five builders and surveyors have come across loft conversions where building regs had not been followed, and 14% had seen walls taken down and chimneys and fireplaces removed without the regulations being adhered to. Eight per cent were aware of rule-breaking conservatories and more than three per cent had seen unauthorised rooms created out of cellars and basements.

In the same five-year period, 176,000 homeowners have been ordered to rectify building work which flouted the rules, whilst one in five had had a retrospective planning application turned down.

Cardiff home improvementsHome improvement has been seen as a solution to the economic downturn, with many homeowners unable to move or trapped in negative equity. But planning regulations are often viewed as confusing, and this is not helped when planning laws change. In September 2012, the government announced that homeowners would soon be able to extend detached homes by 8m and non-detached houses by 6m without the need for planning permission.

This was intended as good news. But a fifth of those who have carried out major work since the announcement believe that the changes are already in effect, and anyone who has carried out work without planning permission might have to get it reversed if they can’t get permission retrospectively.

Home Improvements-  Ignore Planning Permission At Your Peril!

Conversion and extension projects might also lead to other problems. Carrying out work at your property might well affect your insurance policy, yet 47% of homeowners did not tell their insurers about the changes.

LV= home insurance MD John O’Roarke said: “Many homeowners are choosing to improve or extend their homes as they are unable to move or choose not to, but have little understanding of the ‘red tape’ involved with building work.

“Breaching building regulations or planning rules can lead to hefty fines or an order to reverse any offending work. Those intending to make substantial changes to a property should consult their local authority for advice on the rules and inform their insurer of their plans to ensure they have adequate cover in place should the worst happen.”

Despite the confusion, extending your home or converting a space does not have to be complicated. Decide what you want to do and chat to a reputable local builder, as well as your local planning officer, about any home improvements you plan to carry out.

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Into the Breach – Why the Best-laid Plans Still Need Permission!

Friday, March 22nd, 2013

It seems that the proof isn’t so much in the pudding as in the planning when it comes to a spot of home improvement!

Homeowners in the UK have shelled out more than £6bn on unauthorised home improvements in the last five years, with one in 10 bending the rules to get the house of their dreams.

Insurance firm LV= has discovered that home improvements in a tenth of homes in the UK contravene building regulations, from simple drainage projects to complete house renovations.

Builders and surveyors claim that building regs are commonly being flouted, with a staggering 26% of those surveyed saying they had seen extensions where a breach had occurred. One in five builders and surveyors have come across loft conversions where building regs had not been followed, and 14% had seen walls taken down and chimneys and fireplaces removed without the regulations being adhered to. Eight percent were aware of rule-breaking conservatories and more than three percent had seen unauthorised rooms created out of cellars and basements.

In the same five-year period, 176,000 homeowners have been ordered to rectify building work which flouted the rules, whilst one in five had had a retrospective planning application turned down.

Home improvement has been seen as a solution to the economic downturn, with many homeowners unable to move or trapped in negative equity. But planning regulations are often viewed as confusing, and this is not helped when planning laws change. In September 2012, the government announced that homeowners would soon be able to extend detached homes by 8m and non-detached houses by 6m without the need for planning permission.

This was intended as good news. But a fifth of those who have carried out major work since the announcement believe that the changes are already in effect, and anyone who has carried out work without permission might have to get it reversed if they can’t get permission retrospectively.

Conversion and extension projects might also lead to other problems. Carrying out work at your property might well affect your insurance policy, yet 47% of homeowners did not tell their insurers about the changes.

LV= home insurance MD John O’Roarke said: “Many homeowners are choosing to improve or extend their homes as they are unable to move or choose not to, but have little understanding of the ‘red tape’ involved with building work.

“Breaching building regulations or planning rules can lead to hefty fines or an order to reverse any offending work. Those intending to make substantial changes to a property should consult their local authority for advice on the rules and inform their insurer of their plans to ensure they have adequate cover in place should the worst happen.”

Despite the confusion, extending your home or converting a space does not have to be complicated. Decide what you want to do and chat to a reputable local builder, as well as your local planning officer, about your plans.

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Building A New House Extension

Monday, December 10th, 2012

Building A House Extension.. Getting It Right !

We truly love building new house extensions…

Regardless of whether we build a house extension in Cardiff, Bridgend, Barry or any where in South Wales, receiving a testimonial such as this one below really does make us feel proud.

Customer Testimonials

“Hi Roy

We’re really enjoying the space and relaxing in the kitchen with friends.  Our friend Andrew, who we picked up yesterday from the airport, can’t stop raving about how lovely the house is. Your team have been fantastic and we cannot sing their praises enough. Days when we were around and saw them working away in the rain (Andrew the bricky and Geoff spring to mind) and days when we weren’t here, when Andrew and Rhys wheeled all the soil from the back through the house and then wheeled all hardcore back through the house without leaving any mess. Some nights the only way we knew they’d been here (apart from the difference in the garden) was the old glass bottles that had been dug up and left on the side for us. And finally Ray and James’s work in installing the kitchen and Jason’s perseverance at the end to get things finished to a high standard.  

Our thanks again to everyone and if you need anyone to recommend Derwood in the future we’d be happy to do that”  Mark..  New House Extension in Cardiff

All to often people find it difficult to praise someone, a service or A company when they perform well and yet we are all guilty of quickly moaning and groaning when things don’t go to plan. Thankfully our team at Derwood Homes are privileged to receive lots of thanks and praises from our customers for the building work we do and it is these moments that make it all worth while, despite upon times having to work in miserable conditions.

We built this particular house extension for a customer in Cardiff. The only real challange for us was that we had to carry everything through the house itself simply because there was no rear access. Despite this the end results was a lovely new house extension that had some large bi-fold doors that completely opened out into the garden, a lot of electric velux roof windows and a partial glass floor to allow light into the base.

Making dreams come true is what it is all about, whether we build a new house extension, a new house, a loft conversion, basement conversion or any type of project regardless of how challanging it may be we thoroughly enjoy it!

If you fancy learning more about building a new house extension, or any other type of building project why not give us a call or contact us via email

Kind Regards

ROY DERRICK

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Derwood Electrical Services

Monday, December 3rd, 2012

Electricians in Cardiff, Bridgend and South Wales
Offering a First Class Electrical Repair and Electrical Installation Service

Whether your property needs a partial or complete rewire, an electrical upgrade or an electrical test and certification, Derwood Electrical Services can offer and point you in the right direction. Our Electrical services include repairs and installations for Domestic And Commercial Properties, so you need look no further.

It’s true… we are now priviledged to annonouce that due to public demand we have expanded our Electrical Services within the Cardiff, Bridgend and South Wales area.

Accredited Electricians At Your Service !
Our professional team of electricians are available to carry out all types of Domestic and Commercial Electrical work including

  • Electrical Design
  • Complete Installations
  • Electrical Rewires & Upgrades
  • Electrical Fault Finding Service
  • Extra Socket and Lighting
  • Wiring Designs for Loft Conversions and Extensions
  • Electrical Testing, Inspections & Certification
  • Lighting Requirement
  • Outdoor Lighting / Power Supplies
  • Electric Shower Installations
  • Intruder Systems
  • Fire and Smoke Alarm Systems
  • Replacement Sockets & Switches
  • Upgrading & Replacing of Electrical Fuse boards
  • Insurance Work
  • Minor Electrical Works Certification
  • Wiring Design and Extensions
  • Electric Cooker Installation and Maintenance
  • Emergency Call out
  • Landscape lighting Installations
  • Earth bonding, testing and upgrading

Whether your looking for an electrician in Cardiff or an electrcian in Bridgend, our qualified and experience electricians cater for all types of Residential, Commercial, Industrial and Domestic electrical work. You can rest assured that we will provide you with a friendly and efficient service at all times, guaranteed ! Whether you’re looking for a electrician to find an electrical fault, install a new electrical supply or to simply ensure that your electrics are safe, Derwood Electrical Services are the Sparky’s you need !

Electric Can Kill.  So Please don’t take any risks

Always be sure to call an experienced electrician to carry out your electrical work. It’s Best to be Safe than Sorry !  Did you know that is is an offence to carry out any type of electrical work unless you are qualified to do so. Derwood Electrical Services is Registered with the NICEIC and the Electrical Safety Register. So call in the experts !

 

Quality and Professionalism Guaranteed

For full details of our Services, please Contact Us »

Or Simply call us on 0845 519 4707 for a FREE home visit and FREE quote

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Money Saving Tips For House Extensions And Energy Saving Lighting

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

Save up to 90% On Your Fuel Bills When Planning A House Extension or Loft Conversion

Whether you’re considering having new electrical wiring done or installing new spot lighting within your home, house extension or even a loft conversion remember to bear in mind tthe new LED and Energy Saving Bulb range that is now available and replacing traditional bulbs.

Light New House Extensions With Derwood Homes BuildersWith property refurbishments and renovations increasing due to the housing market crisis we are finding that rewiring and the installation installing of new feature lighting and in particular spot lights into kitchen extensions and loft conversions are also on the increase. Unless you are careful you’re electrical consumption can quickly increase, which as we know is becoming a costly experience hence why replacing your existing bulbs for new energy saving units can save you 90 % on your electrical lighting costs and well worth thinking about from the outset!

I have to admit that getting used to the different lighting effects LED bulbs offer, can be an issue but to answer some of the most common questions, the following advice should be helpful towards deciding how to light up your new house extension, loft conversion or even a garage conversion.

1. How long do LED bulbs last?
Well, LED light bulbs have a much longer life span compared to standard halogen bulbs. In fact LED bulbs last up to 50000 hours – that’s over 5 years of continuous use! In reality this is more likely to be 20 years meaning that you may never have to replace the bulbs again.

2. Will LED bulbs fit into my old light fixtures?
The answer is yes. The majority of LED bulbs are designed to be retrofit, meaning they are the perfect to replace your old halogens unless other wise statedon the packaging.

3. What’s the difference between Warm White and Cool White?Saving money building a new house extension with Derwood Homes Builders
This is the biggest confusion that people find difficult to decided on. Many LED bulbs offer 2 different colour options. Warm White LED bulbs provide
a warm, natural light ideal for living rooms and bedrooms where more atmospheric lighting is required. Cool White LEDs give off a more crisp, bright white light perfect for kitchens and bathrooms.

I have even tried mixing soft and cool effect bulbs in my home and found this theme to be a good balance for my loft conversion but the reality is that it is down to personal choice. The down side is that the new range of bulbs are more expensive than traditional bulbs although the price is falling. It’s a shame that our considerate government couldn’t continue to subsidize the cost of the bulbs so that everyone could benefit and help ‘save the plant’ by replacing all house hold bulbs for the energy saving one’s rather than offer solar panels to a select few with the right shape roof on their house! I’m sure the benefits would be far more advantageous.

DID YOU KNOW

That Giant LED Balloons are to be used to Illuminate Hadrian’s Wall for the Olympic CelebrationsElectrical Lighting For The London Olympics

Unless you have been living on Mars for the past few years, it won’t have escaped your attention that the Olympic Games are due to be held in London during the summer of 2012. The games themselves will be a fantastic showcase for the city but the organization and staging does come at some considerable cost to UK taxpayers. With tickets being incredibly hard to purchase for many events, the organizers are keen to get as many people who live outside London involved in a lot of different ways.

Take Hadrian’s Wall in Northumberland for example… it is planned to have a string of giant balloons lit up by LED lights to illuminate the whole length of the wall during the summer evenings of 2012. Titled ‘Connecting Light’, this unique event is set to be a fantastic spectacle attracting many thousands spectators to the North East of England to view the huge line of tethered balloons, 2 metres in diameter, all lit up using different colours of eco-friendly LED bulbs located inside the balloons themselves. Wow.. that is bound to be something worth seeing.

It was designed by a New York-based arts collective company and commissioned by Hadrian’s Wall Heritage in partnership with the London Organizing House Extension LED lighting AdviceCommittee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG).

The idea behind the illuminated balloons is to create a contemporary communications system running from each coast along the border between England and Scotland. The lights will provide a fabulous line of pulsating colours as messages are sent along the wall. These messages can be made visible through smart phones, iPads and tablets.

The London 2012 Festival will also run for 12 weeks during the whole summer to coincide with the London Olympic Games as is bound to bring some amazing entertainment for many all over the world to enjoy.

Let’s hope the weather will be good!

For more advice or a free quote for a new house extension, loft conversion or to build your dream home feel free to contact us at any time

Kind Regards
ROY DERRICK

 

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Home Maintanance Tips And Advice

Monday, March 26th, 2012

Are You Looking For Some Home Maintenance or Home Improvement Advice ?

Keeping on top of home improvements and home maintenance is vital if you want to save money in the long term. Owning a house can be an expensive hobby especially if you’re not careful. home maintenance builders in South wales
As soon as the spring and summer months arrive take a few minutes to walk around your home inside and out to establish what work may need doing to prevent further damage to your home.

I generally find that as soon as the bright sun light arrives and our homes and gardens are lit up with the more intense light than in the winter months it tends to high light the home maintenance jobs that are required such as the grubby paint work, rotting timber work, and worn looking home decor. My wife also tends to notice it more as well, especially as the hidden cobwebs and any dust that she may have missed during her cleaning stand out like to her dismay, hence the reason why we have ‘spring cleans’.

Home improvements are not just about buying new furniture or kitchens or bathrooms, it’s also about finding the right balance to keep the whole of our home well maintained and in tip top shape. If you don’t then repairs thereafter can end up costing you 10 times as much. The same applies to the garden, dirty patio’s and driveways, blocked drains and gutters, damaged fascia boards, cracked tiles and render all of which will need urgent attention before the next winter and frost takes it’s bit!

As a general guideline, find a builder who is willing to pop around to your home and offer you some free advice on what may need urgent attention. A good reputable builder will generally be willing to do so and provide you with an estimate to carry out effective repairs in the hope that you will have money left over to spend on the nicer home improvements that we all wish for.

Home Maintenance Check List
Below are typical examples of some of the common home maintenance repairs to look out for around the outside of your property. Home maintenance check list with Derwood Homes

1. Gutters, Rainwater Pipes And Drains
Blocked and over flowing gutters can lead to major damp problems. Leaves are the most common issue to cause blockages. Snow can losen gutters and rainwater pipes so you may have to securely re-fix them.
2. External Walls
Have a look around the exterior walls of your home especially the External Render. Cracked render will allow water and damp to enter your property. Once water gets behind and freezes it will cause the render to ‘blow’ and break away from the wall.
3. Check your Roof tiles
Cracked or loose roof tiles will allow rain and birds to enter your roof and cause damage both of which are a very common cause of damp that could end up being very costly if you’re not careful.
4. Outside paintwork
Check for signs of any flaking paint work on external walls, fascia boards, windows and doors. If you don’t carry out any repairs when needed it will cause these structures to quickly breakdown. Don’t forget to check the silicone seals around your doors and windows. Very important to ensure that they aren’t letting in any damp other wise your interior decor will soon deterioate.
5. Window Sills
Check your window sills to see if they have any cracks that could be letting in damp into your property.
6. Patios and Paving.
Very often after a good jet wash with the right chemicals, patios and paving can look refreshed and like new. It is well worth checking the mortar joints to see if they need repairing. It may be a fiddly and messy job but well worth it.
7. Driveways. Worn or just dirty?
Driveways very often may look messy and worn, but again may just need a good jet washing. Use the right chemicals to get rid of any oil spills or bird droppings very often does the trick. Every year like clockwork I give my drive and patio a jet wash so that it looks like new. Fill any cracks or refit any loose paving stones to prevent others from becoming damaged. If any part of your drive has sunk, get it repaired otherwise it will cause more unnecessary damage.
8. Check your chimney.
If the lead flashing around your chimney looks damaged or loose have it checked out. You’ll be surprised the damage a leaking chimney can cause in your attic space without you knowing.
9. Garden walls
Combined rain and frost can soon cause some serious damage to garden walls causing them to subside, crack and worst of all fall down. A quick check for any damage is well worth it. Remember that if your wall does fall down and cause injury or damage to some else or their property, you are liable!
10. Trees and shrubs.
It is always worth checking any trees around your property to ensure that they are not leaning or have any cracked branches that could end up falling down.
11. Garden fencing , decking and sheds. home maintenance in hand with Derwood Developments
The weather can greatly reduce the life span of any timber garden fencing, decking or sheds. Applying an annual coat of wood preservative and stain will add years to their lifespan. Remove any rotten timber and replace it with new. Check the stability of fencing posts to ensure that they have not become loose will help reduce the risk of future damage. While you’re at it you may want to apply a coat to any timber garden furniture you may have at the same time. This is something I do every year.
12. Electrics and lights
A visual inspection of your external lights, switches and cables is always a good idea. It you see any signs of water inside your external lights or any damaged cables you must call out a reputable electrician to repair the faults. Any one carrying out electrical work has to be Registered and fully qualified, so don’t take any risks !

And finally, you may want to give your gutters, fascia boards and Upvc doors and windows a good clean with soapy water or Upvc cleaner. It will give them a new lease of life. It may all sound like hard work or expensive, but keeping on top of home maintenance checks will definitely save you a lot of money in the long term and help to keep your home looking like new.

If you would like us to give you any advice please feel free to contact us at any time. Contact Us Here for a Free Quote

KInd Regards
ROY DERRICK

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Looking For A Good Builder

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

I Need A Good Builder in Bridgend

Sound familiar?

Are You Looking for a Good builder? I need a good reputable builder in Cardiff

Have you ever been in the situation before where you have struggled to find a good reputable builder or has anyone ever asked if  ‘ you know a good builder?’

Finding a good reputable builder is not always easy because people are very often skeptical due to the bad press and TV Programmes that illustrate some builders as being rouge builders, but don’t let that put you off.. It’s not as bad is it all sounds.

If you are looking for a good reputable builder, then word of mouth is always a good starting point. Another way is by looking on the Internet to search for a recommended and reputable builder.   

Simply go online and type in ‘I am looking for a builder in Bridgend ‘ or Cardiff,  Porthcawl , Caerphilly, Barry or South Wales for example. Naming the town where you live will help narrow down the search so that you can find a good reputable builder near you.   

Internet Search engines such as Google will then highlight a few options for you to consider. I would highly recommend that you arrange a free no obligation meeting with a few of tGood Builder in Bridgend and Cardiffhe builders that look reputable to you. This will give you the opportunity to meet the builder of your choice in person so that you can get to know them in person.

Building a rapport with a good reputable builder before committing to any type of contract is definitely a good idea. Believe it or not there are lots of people that have deliberately deceived builders in the same way some builders have deceived their customers, which is why both parties may be nervous about one another other to begin with.  Communication and ensuring that every aspect of a project is discussed is extremely important before is starts.

Most good reputable builders offer a good open and honest service and are very trust worthy when it comes to customers paying for the work that is being carried out.

By offering a service whether it is as a builder or any other type of service it means cash flow and being able to pay wages is just as important to a reputable builder as is the work being done to a high standard to a customer.

We at Derwood Homes and Developments for example understand how important this is and that construction terminology and schedules may not be the same as a customer’s way of thinking.

This is why it is so important for both parties to communicate openly as possible to ensure that the working relationship that develops is a good one… just like in any marriage!Reputable buuilder in Cardiff and Caerphilly

If you are looking for a builder, what very often stands out is a builder that turns up every day to carry out a good hard days work, is clean, efficient, professional and very helpful in talking through each stage with their customer. Regardless how good and reputable a builder may be, having construction works done in your home can be stressful. Again, don’t let this put you off, discuss with your builder any concerns you have with regards to any disruption to your day to day activities and what can be done to minimize the effects.

Most builders are keen to help and please their customers, so don’t be afraid to sit down and have a cup of coffee with your builder to discuss each day or stage as things progress.

Developing a good working relationship with a builder is the key and will keep everyone happy and of course make your project worthwhile. Whether you’re looking to have a loft or attic conversion, a new house extension, garage conversion or any type of building work we at Derwood Homes and Developments would be glad to help.

If you would like more advice please feel free to contact us HERE at any time

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Bridgend Builder Teaches Clients How To Make Money

Friday, December 16th, 2011

Make Money In Your Home By Fitting Simple Money Saving Devices 

It’s that time of year where the dark nights and cold weather can make life a little miserable.

The good news is as a reputable Bridgend Builder we love help our customers make money and save money by following these simple steps around your home. Where there is the ‘will’ there is also a way! With energy and utility bills rocketing you really should be looking at ways to reduce them.Money making ideas

If you are on a water meter you can cut your water bills by installing a couple of simple devices to reduce your usage. Flushing the toilet accounts for about a third of all household water use, and several water companies offer free “save-a-flush” devices.

Putting one of these in your toilet cistern will reduce the volume of water used every time you flush. In fact you can even placed two bricks in each of your toilet cisterns to save on water consumption and costs. A simple idea that really does work.

There is also a device called ShowerSmart that helps to reduce amount of water and energy used when having a shower.They are simply fitted to  non-electric showers to regulate the flow of water, and the makers claim the yearly savings for an average family are about 6% on gas bills and 6% on water bills.If your haven’t already done so, start fitting energy saving light bulbs to every light source in your home.

Being a reputable cardiff builder and bridgend builder servicing most areas area South Wales we would be more than happy to provide you with a quote to carry out any of our money savings tips.  When we construct new self build houses for customers, or house extensions or even loft conversions current building regulations now mean that energy conservation is paramount in design and construction.

Bridgend Builder Helps You To Make MoneySome companies are giving these away for free so it is worth while asking. You could save as much as 30% on your electric bills. Teach everyone in the family to get into the habit of turning electrical appliances and lights off when not in use. Then of course there is the obvious, make sure that your loft / attic space has at least 300 mm of insulation to prevent heat being lost through your roof.

If you haven’t already got at least 300 mm of insulation in your attic then pop down the likes of B & Q a grab some extra rolls that are on offer and fit them in your loft. You can save an extra 12 % on heat loss. Make sure every pipe is insulated as well. 

Turn the thermostat down by 1 % in each of your rooms. It will save you on average about £70 a year. Again, turn each radiator thermostat down by a notch to help save money. Try and keep all doors closed throughout the house. This will definately help save on fuel bills.

Just as important is to get your boiler serviced. Just like a car if it isn’t serviced you can bet it is operating below standard. Oh and by the way, why not check in on your elderly neightbours to ensure that they are coping during the winter… you could even give them some money making tips.

If you would us to fit any of these devices feel free to contact us here at any time at enquiries@derwoodhomes.co.uk ……… we would be glad to help.In the mean time wrap up warm and start thinking about saving money. Every penny counts.

Kind Regards
ROY

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How To Choose A Reputable Builder In South Wales

Thursday, November 10th, 2011

Finding A Reliable And Reputable Builder in Bridgend, Cardiff And South Wales

We all hear stories like the plumber that charged an elderly man £2,880 an hour and the family that scammed pensioners out of £1million – it can be nightmare to find a trustworthy and reputable builder when you need building work done at your home.

In fact, Brits fork out over a staggering £737 million to rectify botched jobs by cowboy builders each year, so it is crucial to choose your builder with care. Around 6.2 million (13%) of people in the UK have fallen foul of cowboy builders in the past five years, according to research from Sainsbury’s home insurance, and have had to fork out nearly £3.7bn to rectify botched buildng jobs during this time. Analysis shows plumbers have caused the most damage, with 1.4m homeowners suffering from their poor quality work since 2006. Most homes are now having new extensions built as well as loft conversions, landscaping work and garage conversions constructed rather than move home.

Reputable Builders South Wales

Reputable Builders South Wales

Of those of us that have fallen victim to a cowboy bulder, an average £2,077 was paid for the work they carried out. On top of this amount homeowners had to pay nearly £600 to either repair the damage or complete the unfinished job. While over 150,000 people are estimated to have paid over £5000 to rectify a botched job. Ben Tyte, Head of Sainsbury’s Home Insurance comments: “We’re concerned that so many homeowners have to rectify poor workmanship carried out by builders they’ve employed in good faith to work in their homes“.

It’s completely unacceptable that building remedial costs are exceeding £700 million. Of course the burden isn’t just financial; there can be a great deal of personal stress attached to these difficult situations including the clean up and often confrontation. On the other side of the coin, there are people who deliberately appoint builders with the intention of never paying for the excellent work they carry out, which then causes huge problems, very often leading towards the builders reputation being tarnished.

Cost over quality
Coming from a family of reputable building and construction porfessionals, I’m aware that the dodgy guys often undercut reasonable quotes in order to secure the work. Yet accepting suspiciously low quotes can be the start of costly mistakes, that sees quality sacrificed in favour of saving money and homeowners being faced with footing an even higher bill to put botched building works right. Ok, we may well blow our own trumpet and claim that Derwood Homes and Developments are excellent repuatable builders, but like everyone else we can make mistakes, but the main thing to look out for is a builder who is keen to please their customers and even admit and rectify any silly mistakes they may make without trying to charge you for doing so.

Tyte addes: “In these challenging economic times, it’s understandable that people want to cut back on costs but where work to the home is concerned it’s just not worth the risk. It’s simply false economy, especially if you’ve invalidated your home insurance by not taking due care. It’s imperative you hire a quality builder, and make sure that the work is done properly.”

Sainsbury’s home insurance warns that in extreme cases, if a homeowner is proven not to have taken reasonable care of their property, they could also risk invalidating their home insurance.

Professional Builders

Professional Builders

So how should you choose a reputable builder?

  • Spend time researching – ask for friends, family or neighbours for recommendations.
  • Follow up references – contact the names the builder gives you and ask to view the work. Happy customers should always be happy to talk and show you the building work they have had done
  • Always check for relevant qualifications and accreditations, from associations such as FMB and the NHBC
  • Always seek at least three quotes and don’t automatically opt for the cheapest. You may well regret it !
  • Get everything in writing, including a breakdown of costs and a completion date for the project.
  • Check your home insurance to ensure you are covered for the work and if a 24-hour home emergency advice service is available should things go wrong.

It is advisable to appoint a builder who has all of the skills and tradesmen within his own team of men. This will ensure that the complete project is carried out efficiently and to the same standards everyone expects. It even means that the builder is in complete control of the project and responsible for everyone working in your home.

Yes, there are nightmare builders out there, but there are also some excellent ones as well.

Looking to find a reliable and reputable builder ?  www.derwoodhomes.co.uk

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