Flood - repairs
Any areas showing signs of mould should be treated - fungicidal products are available from DIY stores. After about six months it would be advisable to check timber floors for any evidence of rot or shrinkage. Any necessary repair work can then be made.
Fitted units, particularly in the kitchen, made of chipboard may not dry out well and will become damaged by absorbed water. Sanitisation of these is difficult and therefore they may have to be eventually replaced.
Check for structural damage to your property and if you think there is damage or danger seek advice from your insurers and/or a builder. Any confirmed or suspected dangerous structures should be reported to the district council’s Building Control team.
Your insurers or your builder may identify other work which is needed, after your property has substantially dried out. However if plaster walls and partitions have been affected badly and do not dry out in a sound condition the plaster and boards affected will have to be removed, walls dried out and re-plastered. Otherwise redecoration of sound walls is all that will be necessary.
How to choose a builder
Some basic guidelines on how to choose a builder have been drawn up by the council’s Building Control team. For large projects, consider getting professional advice. However, if the job is small then advice could be sought from someone in the industry who you know and trust. You should always get a minimum of three quotations, and have them checked. The cheapest is not always the best value.
Basic guidelines to follow include asking the builder the following questions:
- where have they worked before
- are they happy for you to see their work
- what is their expertise in the particular project you intend to carry out
- how do they want to be paid - on completion or in stages
- can they supply references
- are they happy to accept a retention clause (for example, subject to the issue of a council completion certificate)
- will they give you a final completion date
- will they accept a penalty clause on failure to complete in time
- will they agree to independent arbitration should you have any dispute.
It is also worthwhile reassuring yourself by checking out the builder’s work, references and other aspects of their work habits with previous clients. The district council can put you in touch with a range of registered organisations who may be able to offer advice, although we are not able to recommend builders to carry out the work.
The Office of Fair Trading website allows you to search for firms in the area who are members of trade bodies with approved codes of practice.