04 Sep 2019


What is it?

Checkatrade is one of the most popular tradesman websites – both for tradespeople and customers. It’s an online directory that you pay to be featured on, so people can find and contact you for work. Clients can also leave you a rating, which is then visible to the public.

What makes it great?

It’s so simple to use. To set yourself up, just complete an online form. You’ll get a call back, where you’ll be asked to answer a few questions and provide proof of your qualifications, references and insurance. Then, once your profile is live, you’re good to go.

Once you’re listed on the site, it’s easy for customers to find and contact you, which means you’re more likely to get business from the site. Plus, once you’ve paid your subscription fee, there are no other costs to pay – regardless of how many leads or jobs Checkatrade brings you.


What is it?

The iZettle app is designed to help small businesses take card payments and create and send invoices with ease.

What makes it great?

Its card reader is award-winning. Combined with the app, it lets you turn your device into a mobile, secure point of sale. This means you can use it to keep track of card, cash, mobile and invoice payments while on the go.

You can generate bills and invoices, sending them to customers straight from the app, and iZettle will let you know when they’ve been paid or even send reminders to clients who’ve missed the due date. Need to issue a refund or discount? You can do that on the app, too.

Rated People

What is it?

There are two Rated People apps – one for customers looking for tradespeople and another for tradespeople looking for jobs. Rated People works in a similar way to Checkatrade, but is more focused on helping you find your own work, instead of waiting for clients to contact you.

What makes it great?

With Rated People, you’re in control. You can proactively browse, search and filter potential work, so you decide what type of jobs you take on and where.

Then, if you want the work, you can buy the lead and contact the potential client. Plus, you’ll get access to member benefits like high street discounts. You can also help increase your reputation by answering the DIY-related questions posted on the site by potential customers.


What is it?

The trusted power tool manufacturer has created its own mobile app, which turns your smartphone into a handy, multi-functional device you can use while you’re on a job.

What makes it great?

It’s the Swiss Army knife of tradesman apps. Mislaid your spirit level? You can use the Makita app to check your work instead, thanks to its built-in levelling instrument. There’s also a flash light and distance-measuring tool.

If you’re worried about what all these clever gadgets will do to your mobile battery, don’t. The app comes with a battery level indicator, so it won’t drain without warning.


What is it?

Following in the footsteps of Checkatrade and Rated People, MyBuilder lets you find work based on a custom area you set. You only need to pay a shortlist fee once you and a client are ready to exchange details.

What makes it great?

Unlike Checkatrade and Rated People, MyBuilder doesn’t charge a monthly or annual listing fee. This can be particularly useful when you’re first starting out or if cash flow is an issue.

Plus, it’s a handy way to fill any last-minute work gaps. The app uses a matching process to shortlist tradespeople for customers. If you’re chosen, you can then make contact with a warm lead who’s already expecting your call.


What is it?

Designed for independent tradespeople, the Fixington Calendar app lets you keep track of all your jobs and appointments. It also has a built-in invoice function, and you can save information about your jobs and client details to view later.

What makes it great?

It reduces your paperwork and helps you stay organised. One of the best invoice apps for tradespeople, Fixington lets you send bills through messaging apps, like Facebook or iMessage, so they’ll be easier for your customers to pick up.

Lost your phone? No problem – all your data is synced and backed up, so you can view it on any desktop or phone. You can also connect Fixington with an iZettle device, so you can take card payments and record them against the relevant job in your app.

Powered Now

What is it?

In short, Powered Now is an invoice, estimating and scheduling program for small businesses. You can use it to create quotes and job sheets, wherever you are. It can also help you manage your diary and keep track of payments.

What makes it great?

How much it can do! From sending documents via text and pinging you an alert once they’ve been opened, to organising all your communications in an easy-to-view timeline – as one of the best organiser apps out there, Powered Now has got it all.

Do you manage a team? They can all use Powered Now to record their hours, photos of finished work or customer signatures, so everything’s stored in one place. It’s also got a handy built-in chat function, so you can all stay in touch within the app. Plus, live team tracking allows you to check everyone is where they need to be.

18 Jul 2019

Two months in to summer time and we have experienced heavy down pours and days of perfect sunshine. The evenings are lighter and we are now able to tackle the outside jobs at a more enjoyable and leisurely pace.  Have you had a look at your guttering? Is it full of leaves and debris? If so have you thought of installing some Hedgehog gutter guard?


Why not replace your Roofline fascia. We can satisfy all your needs from Bullnose Fascia, Square edged Fascia, soffit board, Cover board, Tongue & Groove Soffit, shiplap Cladding and Kavex textured Cladding available in various colours

We have many products that are just plainly useful to use around the house such as Tools, Workwear, Dust sheets, Fixings, Silicones, Sealants, Adhesives, Cleaners and much more.

The ever popular Skypod/Roof Lantern has captured our customers’ imagination with the ability to turn a dull uninspiring extension with a flat roof into a magnificent natural light capturing room with a stylish glass Skypod on top. What better way to save money by converting your existing structure into a classy looking conservatory. They are made in our local factory and come with a 10 year guarantee. We’re sending out a discount for this product in the post so if you’re interested, open a trade account today to catch a place on our mailing list!

Make a note in your diary for our ‘Trade Day’ taking place at all four of our branches on September 12th 2019. Open to the Trade and Public. Pop in for a chat about your next project over nice cup of coffee and take advantage of the many offers which will be available on the day. For more information keep an eye on our website during August.

Why not install some miniflow Rainwater Guttering. Available in White, Black, and Brown, the ideal solution for small buildings such as sheds garages, summer houses and greenhouses. Then take it a stage further and install a Water Butt. Check out our Water Butts here:


We are continuing to sell our attractive range of Water Butts and ancillaries. The Slim line Water butt is ever popular and is always a hit with customers who are short on space. The installation of a Water butt has got to be a fantastic way to save money on the ever ‘rising’ water bill. How does a water butt help save money? The Consumer Council for Water states that the average roof collects about 85,000 litres of rainwater in a year, which is enough to fill 450 water butts with free water. It’s a great way to save some money and help with all the other bills.

The yellow ‘Flex Tub bucket’ is such a useful item to help you move soil, twigs, weeds and similar around your garden. The 3 Gallon builders bucket is the perfect accompaniment to the Flex Tub bucket. You can never have enough helpful neat time saving accessories in your garden.

Now is the time to install my favourite practical and most functional product.  The Fakro insulated loft hatch ladder is a bargain! Have it installed before Christmas and the climb into the loft will be a doddle.

But I hear you say a loft ladder is for life not just for Christmas. How right you are. Come and see us soon, Ray