A website set up for the general public to find tradespeople has ditched the ‘reviewing’ element claiming the system has become ‘worthless’.
We have all become used to reading online reviews for anything we are considering purchasing, from holidays to haircuts, and review websites for the trades have multiplied in recent years. But these reviews have now become ‘worthless’ and should be done away with, according to Tarquin Purdie, owner of HaMuch.com.
The HaMuch.com site shows details of how much tradespeople charge in a local area and had previously accepted reviews and stars out of five. These will now be deleted from the website.
Many websites who charge builders for job leads offer feedback and a marks system, but Purdie believes that good builders who stick to the rules can be punished by unscrupulous homeowners, and that customers can end up being fobbed off with poor tradesmen who game the system.
“The review system has become a sort of two-way intimidation. Builders pressure customers to leave a good review and even offer cash discounts as a part of this. Customers ask tradesmen to include extras, heavy discounts or endlessly snag before agreeing to leave good feedback. A good tradesman can be ruined by one bad review, but a poor one can just bribe their way to positive feedback. It has become a bad joke. And one that many of these companies profit from. It’s time for homeowners and tradesmen to leave them behind,” said Purdie.
He is calling for the industry and customers to re-think how they work together in an honest way.
“The review system has become entirely worthless. Although tradesmen and women are paying a lot to be a part of it. The problem is that there is no real way of checking that the work has been done, if it is any good and whether bad reviews have been removed at the request of tradesmen, who are the paying customer for review companies.
“To be effective, the system requires a regulator, although I’m not sure these companies would be willing to stump up for that. False reviews are like fake news, but no one is taking any action to either regulate or clean up the sizeable builder review industry. We only welcome builders, plumbers or electricians who are clear and open on price and who are willing to show customers prior work.”
What do you think? Do positive reviews help you get business? Should the system be regulated?