Sunday, August 19
DIY

Maintaining standards

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Don’t overlook benefits of accredited building associations

I am getting more requests for recommendations for contractors of all types. As my readers know, I won’t recommend anyone if I have not had a personal experience or at least a few good references.

As prices rise, handymen appear to be in demand for those that can’t manage small tasks themselves.

A while ago, I tried to start a database of handymen but did not have much success as they appear to be a breed that come and go.

If you have any recommendations, please tell me and I will add them to my Facebook page. As you know, I am happy to answer questions and dish out advice, but I would appreciate a little more feedback, especially if I have made the wrong call.

I readily admit that I can make mistakes, but please let me know whether my advice has helped or not. My pet crusade is to encourage everyone to use contractors who are both registered and compliant in terms of the law, together with using contractors who belong to accredited contractor associations such as the Master Builders Association.

Read: Tough times for builders

            Tip of the week: Make sure contractor is compliant

            Tip of the week: It is time to talk to your contractor

People at large and even their own members are sometimes unaware of some of the benefits these associations can provide.

As the standard of workmanship continues to drop, caused in part by the acceptance by clients of shoddy workmanship as the new norm and the lack of fresh talent entering the industry, who wants to be a building artisan, working long hours for a small reward, when there are much better opportunities for those with a matric certificate?

Yes, to enter an official apprenticeship now, you need a matric.

The Master Builders Association has a scheme whereby you can send your workforce for assessment and then advise you what training your workers need to upskill them to do the equivalent work of an artisan and what rate they should be paid as they move up through the categories of tradesman.

This is a great way of ensuring we keep the current skills in the industry. The association pays for the training and the contractor only has to pay the normal wages, which can be reclaimed through government training allowances.

*Handy Mac, aka Don MacAlister, is our expert on household DIY issues. If you have a question for him, please send it to don@macalister.co.za or SMS only to 082 446 3859. Find Don on FB: facebook.com/thehandymac

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