Over half of Brits fall victim to cowboy builders

Property Reporter
12th November 2021
construction 665

Several lockdowns over the past eighteen months have seen a rapid rise in home improvement projects amongst Brits. However, with almost a quarter of us opting for help from professionals when it comes to renovating our properties, newly released research has revealed the areas of the UK the most at risk of sub-standard jobs as a result of cowboy builders.

56% of those that have had work carried out on their homes share that they’ve had to fork out additional costs to rectify the problems, with 11% spending between £500 - £749. One in 12 Brits also wouldn’t recommend the contractors that they’ve hired to family and friends, with one resident revealing they had to take their cowboy plumber to a small claims court after they fled with their deposit, resulting in a full refund.

When asked to score their satisfaction from 0 – 5, with 0 being extremely unhappy and the worst service you could imagine, and 5 being extremely happy to the point you can’t ask for anything more, floor fitters and painters and decorators were the highest with an average of 3.5, followed by plumbers (3.4), and builders (3.3).

Breaking the research down by city, the top five areas where you’re most likely to encounter a cowboy builder are as follows:

According to the study, Bristol is the city with the highest chance of hiring a cowboy builder compared to any other in the UK. Almost one in six (13.6%) shared that they are unsatisfied with the work of third-party contractors and have to fork out between £1,250 - £1,499 to fix sub-standard work.

Birmingham and Belfast take the second and third spot for potential cowboy builders, with almost one in 10 admitting to receiving an unsatisfactory service.

Turning our attention to the least likely cities, reveals the top five:

Norwich takes the top spot as the city least likely to receive sub-standard work, with those who have had work done revealing they have an overall satisfaction of 97.6%, with 78.6% likely to recommend their contractors to friends and family.

Sheffield ranks second, with 85% of residents revealing that they’ve never had to pay to fix the work of a cowboy builder, followed by Liverpool, Glasgow, and Edinburgh.

Related articles
More from Property
Latest from Financial Reporter
Latest from Commercial Reporter
to our newsletter

Join a community of over 30,000 intermediaries and keep up-to-date with industry news and upcoming events via our newsletter.