Tuesday, 26th May 2020
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Cash in hand & mum's the word

Cash in hand & mum's the word

ItÂ’s spring time and for many of us it is also the time when we carry out the annual improvements and repairs to our homes.

Under the present economic climate and the lack of work available it is certain that many now offer their services as builders, painters, plumbers and whatever they think they can put their hands to.

“How convenient” you might say because, under the same climate, most people need to repair, paint and build as economically as possible and these newly born handy men, “cash in hand” and “mum’s the word” would seem to be the perfect answer. But
are they really? Does the word “Cowboys” spring to mind?

Perhaps they are the perfect answer to a small job that really you could even do yourself but when it gets to something a little more substantial like painting the outside of the house, building an extension, repairing a roof, tiling and so on you better think twice. In the first place you must bear in mind that you need permission from the local council to carry out certain works, even if such works are internal and it wonÂ’t be the builder that suffers the consequences for not having it, it will be you! The penalty can range from a hefty fine to demolition of extensions or structural alterations. A professional will not even attempt to start a job without the due licences in place.


The other factor to consider is that if one of these handy men suffers an accident while on your premises, he can hold you responsible and take legal action to recover damages because under Spanish law he has become your employee while working for you. Consequently you can additionally be held liable for not having commercial liability insurance and even for employing people illegally.

The professional worker on the other hand will either be employed by his own company or self employed as required by law. This means that he should have his own liability insurance and that you will have a valid guarantee for any work done.

Save yourself money and a lot of grief. Make sure you compare one or two estimates for a job you want done. Ensure that the estimates clearly show who you are dealing with, his NIF or CIF number for IVA purposes, full address and contact details. You should also make sure that he is insured for public liability and shows you other similar jobs done. A respectable, professional
builder will have no problem in offering this information and make sure to have the required licences in place.

You may have to pay a bit more and even pay IVA, but it will certainly be cheaper in the long run.

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