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I am a builder. How do I avoid disputes and non-payment?

View profile for Rebecca Rogers
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Avoiding disputes and non-payment in the building industry requires careful planning, clear communication, and proactive measures. Here are some strategies you can employ:

1. Detailed Contracts:

Ensure that you have a detailed and legally binding contract in place before starting any work. The contract should clearly outline the scope of work, project timeline, payment terms, and dispute resolution procedures.

2. Dispute Resolution Clause:

Include a dispute resolution clause in your contracts specifying the procedures for resolving disputes, such as mediation, arbitration, or litigation. This can help resolve conflicts more efficiently and cost-effectively.

3. Clear Communication:

Maintain open and transparent communication with your clients throughout the project. Address any concerns or issues promptly and keep them updated on the progress of the work.

4. Document Everything:

Keep detailed records of all communication, including emails, meeting minutes, and in particular any changes to scope of work or project timeline. This documentation can be crucial evidence in case of disputes or non-payment.

5. Verify Client's Financial Stability:

Before taking on a project consider conducting credit checks to assess a client’s ability to pay.

6. Progress Payments:

Implement a progress payment schedule tied to project milestones. This ensures that you receive payment as work progresses and reduces the risk of non-payment at the end of the project.

7. Quality Workmanship:

Deliver high-quality workmanship and adhere to industry standards and regulations. Satisfied clients are less likely to dispute payments or delay payments.

8. Legal Advice:

Seek legal advice when drafting contracts or dealing with disputes.


By implementing these strategies, you can minimise the risk of disputes and non-payment to protect your interests as a builder.

For more information about dealing with a building dispute call Rebecca Rogers on 01562 820181 or email