There are over 75 garden office suppliers listed on our sister site The Garden Room Guide and that can make it daunting to find the supplier that is right for you.
Garden offices are a niche of the garden room industry and its a good idea to work with a specialised garden office supplier who knows how to create great workspaces for their clients.
Normally a buyer has a clear idea of the style of garden office they like, and in many cases the features they don’t like, and choosing a supplier whose portfolio features a design you like is a good starting point.
It’s a good idea to create a shortlist of suppliers, maybe narrow your choice to four of five suppliers, then research and talk to each supplier and get a feel for them.
See a garden office before you buy
It’s always a good idea to see a garden office before you buy, and many suppliers have show buildings you can look round, these are either at their headquarters or at trade shows like Grand Designs Live. Another option many suppliers offer is for you to see an example of their work local to where you live. This is usually by appointment, but this can be a very valuable step in the buying process.
Once you have created your shortlist, most though not all suppliers offer site visits, these are normally free and offer a valuable opportunity to talk with the supplier, and get a feel for the company and what they can create for you.
Most suppliers publish testimonials from past clients on their websites and this can be a good indication of the experience of past clients, although it should be said suppliers seldom publish a bad testimonial!
How many garden offices have they built?
Getting an indication of a suppliers experience is important, whilst every supplier needs their first commission you are walking on uncharted territory if it’s the their first garden office build, and you will need to take this into consideration. But how can you tell how much experience a supplier has? Their website is a good indicator, if the site only has stock photography or computer generated images of garden offices, chances are they haven’t built many, an experienced supplier will normally have a gallery of different builds.
Another tool to help you choose a supplier is their membership of professional societies such as The Guild of Master Craftsmen or the Customer Protection Association, these bodies take up references from past customers before accepting their membership, and they can intervene if problems result from the workmanship of their members.
Another check you might consider in your selection process is a financial one. The economic climate over the last few years has affected all aspects of business and the garden office industry has not been immune, and there have been a few notable names lost from the industry.
A garden office is an expensive purchase and its wise to ensure your investment is secure and that your supplier will be around to see your project through, a credit check will allow you to make an informed decision.
There are lots of companies that supply financial information, we like www.duedil.com who publish the vital statistics of a company for free, they also offer a credit rating service for £9.99 which gives you a snap shot of the current state of the companies finances.