Essential reading for retailers and suppliers in the home improvement market

Two weeks wasted waiting for tradesmen!

Published: 15 February 2010
Brits spend more than two weeks of their lives waiting for tradesmen, according to new research.
Two weeks wasted waiting for tradesmen!
Over the course of a year, the average UK homeowner waits for three different tradesmen for a total of six hours and three minutes, adding up to 15 days over the average adult lifetime.

Some wait even longer as 82% of those polled said a contractor turned up late, and 60% said they waited all day for a tradesman who failed to show up at all.

Plumbers have been named as the worst for keeping people waiting, taking an average of 59 minutes to arrive, with heating engineers next in line.

The research, conducted by TrustMark, revealed bedroom fitters to be the most reliable, keeping people waiting for an average of just 23 minutes.


Published prior to March 2014
By Martin
As Maggie says, some trades are more likely to deal with emergency calls which disrupt the planned schedule.

I can't help thinking that this is another example of a rather trite survey conducted mainly to allow a press release to be generated.

There is not enough information in the story. For example, among the 82% of people who said that a contractor showed up late, how exacting were they in their definition of 'late' (in general there is no excuse for being late, but a delay of a few minutes is no great sin and would not trouble most people) and of those who waited all day for a contractor who did not show up, how many were called by the contractor with an explanation?

How many of the people who were surveyed were actually talking about trade contractors, rather than using the opportunity to vent their frustration generally at having to wait for various services such as delivery of an item?
Published prior to March 2014
By Maggie Langley
It may be true that plumbers are more likely to arrive late than a bedroom fitter, but it's important to keep in mind the nature of their work. A bedroom fitter is unlikely to be called out to an emergency repair that changes his/her daily schedule. Plumbers and heating engineers often fit in emergency jobs for customers and this can mean that people waiting for quote appointments or other non-urgent work might have to wait a bit longer than expected.

There is no excuse for a customer having to wait in all day for a tradesmen who doesn't bother to call or show up. Although, please remember that tradesmen are professionals who are skilled at what they do, and sometimes they may be late. How much time does the average UK resident spend waiting in a doctor's or dentist's office over the course of a year?

I provide administrative support to tradesmen in the UK through my business OfficeHounds, and I am disappointed with how little respect some customers give to tradesmen. Clearly there are some cowboys out there, but most are doing a great job. Give tradesmen a break if they're a little late.

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