A.The Home Improvement Guarantee agreement demonstrates your commitment for the project or work to begin and gives the builder or tradesmen the reassurance to supply materials and commit resources to the job or project. You can agree with your builder or tradesmen to pay in the full amount, or if over £2000, by agreed stage payments, these agreed payments are be paid into the account before the next stage begins.
Q.2. Who is Transpact?
A.Your money is held in a secure HSBC "Client Account" . This service is provided by Transpact which is a HMRC and FCA registered and authorised payment service provider: registered number 503403
Q.3. When does the builder or tradesmen get paid?
A. When the work is completed or by any agreed stage payment date and you are happy with the completed job or project. You contact us and authorise payment.
Q.4. If I agree stage payments, do I still need to pay all the money up front?
A. You can, if you wish, pay the full amount into the account. However, if stage payments have been agreed you must pay into the account the next stage payment seven days prior to the work commencing.
Q.5. What should I do if I have questions or queries regarding work in progress?
A. All questions should, in the first instance, be taken up with the contractor.
Q.6. What happens in the event of a dispute?
A. In the unlikely event of a dispute between you and the contractor. Please contact us and we will try to resolve the matter by mediation. If the matter cannot resolved ,a surveyor will be sent to inspect the work, his recommendations are then binding on both parties. If the work is unsatisfactory the contractor will be instructed to complete the works to the standard required. Should he refuse or be unable to finish the job, we will instruct a new contractor to complete the job or project.
Q.7. What happens if my builder or tradesmen goes into liquidation?
A. Your money is always safe in the HSBC client account. If the builder or tradesmen goes bust or is unable to complete the works we will instruct a new contractor to finish the job or project.
Q.8. How do I make payments into the "Client Account"?
A. You can make your payments by, bank transfer or internet banking. We do not accept debit or credit cards.
Q.9. How can I find vetted tradesmen for my project ?
A. If you require a vetted contractor to give you a quote for your project please just click the button '' request a HIG'' on the Home page and fill in the short form with your contact details and the type of work you need.We will then source three contractors in your area to contact you to arrange to visit the property and give you a quote.
If you have already chosen a contractor, or have one in mind, you can still be protected by a Home Improvement Guarantee but,of course, we would have to vet them. So, for maximum protection all you need to do is to fill a short form with your contact and project details and our advisers will help you find the best tradesmen in your area.
Q.10. What is deposit protection?
A. Your deposit is protected by an Insurance Backed Guarantee so that in the unlikely event that the contractor ceases the trade before they start work on the project, another contractor will be assigned to start the project.
The deposit amount that you paid in the beginning will be paid to this contractor by the insurance company.This means that your deposit is always safe with a Home Improvements Guarantee..
Q.11. How do I pay my builder using an HIG?
A. After you have signed an agreement with an HIG vetted builder, the agreed contract amount (that must be £2000 or above) is deposited in HSBC "Trust Account" that is managed by us and our secure processing partner Transpact. You can either choose to pay the full amount after successful completion of the project or opt for stage payments that shall be released to the contractor after your approval. Both client and the contractor can see the account online at anytime.
Q.12. What type of contractors do you vet or provide for project?
A. HIG provides rated tradesmen throughout the country. Our vetted tradesmen can undertake following types of projects:
- House extensions
- Garage conversions
- Loft conversions
- Window replacements
- Bathroom and kitchen Fitting
- Electrical works
- Plumbing and heating works
- Landscaping projects
Q.13. What if the selected contractor is unable to complete the project?
A. You need not worry, as your money is always safe in the "Client Account". In the unlikely event a contractor is unable to complete the project for any reason, we can instruct another vetted contractor to complete the project.
Q.14. How much do I have to pay to use your service?
A. The Home Improvements Guarantee is a completely free of charge service for homeowners. You don’t have to pay anything for using our services and selecting HIG trusted builders or tradesmen .
Q.15. How are dispute handled?
A. If an unlikely event of dispute arises for any project, we provide helpful mediation. And even if there is no agreement between the contractor and the client through mediation, we appoint a surveyor to look into the details of the dispute and resolve it. The recommendations of the surveyor are binding in such cases on both the parties. So you do not need to go through the time, stress and expense of legal action to resolve a dispute
Q.16. I am a builder, how can I start putting contracts through HIG?
A. You will need to go through, and pass, our contractor vetting procedure. We will need your experience and qualification details along with references of recent clients you have worked for. We will also check relevant insurances and liability policies. You are required to have these policies valid all the times and sign our code of conduct.
You can find the membership application form buy clicking the words ' Membership Application' found in teh footer bar of the HIG website
Q.17. What is Home Improvements Warranty?
A. This warranty is an Insurance Backed Guarantee and guarantees our contractors guarantee for up to TEN years. For example if the contractor gives you a written guarantee for 7 years then the Home Improvements Guarantee will issue an Insurance Backed Guarantee that will guarantee your contractors guarantee for 7 years. So if you have a problem in 5 years time and the contractor has ceased to trade ,for whatever reason, your guarantee is still valid.
The warranty is automatically included on every Home Improvement Guarantee project.
Q.18. How do I check if the trusted contractor is the best at his work?
A. All of our tradesmen are approved through our vetting procedure and have signed our quality charter. Further more all contractors will not get paid if you are unhappy with their work - so they have to be good at what they do.
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For Help Call Our National Helpline
01375 489 744