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Savings Guide for Scaffolding

House surrounded by scaffolding

In this guide, we’ll be discussing how to save money on scaffolding in the UK. First, we provide money-saving tips on buying scaffolding. Next, we look at how to save money when hiring scaffolding. Finally, we list the cost factors responsible for the cost of hiring scaffolding in the UK.

Scaffolding is an excellent piece of equipment for tradespeople and homeowners alike who are trying to carry out home improvements at height. Aside from allowing for greater efficiency and safety, scaffolding will enable people to reach difficult-to-reach heights that might otherwise be unattainable.

Traditional scaffoldings are temporary structures with a combination of metal pipes, tube frames, and walking boards. Although traditional scaffoldings are frequently used outside, they can also be used indoors, such as when attempting to access ceilings. However, they tend to be labour intensive, difficult to set up, move around, and operate.

On the other hand, scaffolding towers are less cumbersome, easy to set up and move around. The type of project you need to do will determine whether to go for the traditional scaffolding or scaffold towers. For this guide, our focus will be on conventional scaffolding equipment.

How to save money when buying scaffolding

Buying scaffolding can save you money in the long term by saving you many downtimes, waiting for rental companies to assemble the equipment. Buying quality scaffolding is also essential to keep employees safe and prevent accidents.

Scaffolding that is cheap or in poor condition increases the risk of an accident. Accidents on the job site can result in expensive lawsuits as a result of the injuries sustained. Some of the ways you can save money on buying scaffolding include:

Purchase from local companies

If you buy your scaffolding from a local company, it’ll save you a lot of time, effort, and money. Local companies are able to quickly offer you the technical support and service that may be required if anything goes wrong with the scaffolding.

Vet the supplier you deal with

It is vital to check the references, knowledge and experience of the supplier you plan to use. Carrying out due diligence on your tradesperson helps to save both money and time if a problem arises with the scaffolding and the supplier is not able to provide the needed technical support and expert advice.

Two men applying scaffolding to house.

Involve a third party to test the scaffold

Most scaffolding manufacturers offer third-party testing. A third party will ensure that the scaffolding you buy is safe and has the relevant proofs and assurances.

Avoid fake and cheap scaffolding

There is various cheap scaffolding of substandard quality on the market, and while those types of scaffolding appear ‘cheap’, they often prove to be expensive by causing severe accidents. Quality scaffoldings do not only cover technical support and warranty insurance but also ensure safety and save you money in the long run.

Stick to high standards

Ensure you understand what the construction rules and scaffolding standard measurements are in your region in the UK and keep to them. Find out the specifications for individual scaffolding components such as the boards, couplers, and tubes. Do check the specified standards and certifications of the scaffolding materials before making your purchase. The load-bearing capacity of the scaffolding must also be of the correct standard.

Evaluate traceability and accessibility

Evaluate the vertical access requirements of the scaffolding before buying it. Choose a scaffolding that provides safe access to stairways. Also, to ensure traceability, ensure the scaffolding components have appropriate markings indicating the batch number, the place, and the production date.

Ensure technical support is available

You’ll save money and time if the scaffolding company is always available to provide you with technical support when the scaffolding malfunctions or any issue arises with it. If necessary, the manufacturer’s technical support team may help replace the faulty parts (such as couplers and tubes) of the scaffolding. 

Check it yourself

Ensure that the equipment that is delivered is what you’ve purchased. Have the scaffolding assembled in your presence and carry out a visual inspection of the equipment by checking all the components. Call the attention of the manufacturer if there is any defect in any part of the scaffolding.

model of house with scaffolding

Go for the best technology

Depending on space requirements and working conditions, going for the best scaffold technology will save you money. By trying to save money and buying obsolete technology, the ‘saved money will be lost through long periods of assembly as well as tedious on-site adaptations, which will slow down your project.

 How to get a good quote and save money when hiring scaffolding

There’re times when the project to be undertaken is small and would not take an extended period of time, and buying a scaffolding would be unnecessary. In such cases, hiring a scaffolding might be the best cost-saving decision to take. When hiring a scaffolding, there are several steps that you could take that’ll save you money.

Look for companies offering free scaffolding rental quotes

You can save money by choosing a company that offers free quotes. While most scaffolding works can be quoted off the plan, it’s important not to order too much or too little for the project at hand. Ordering too much would mean overspending and losing money, and ordering too little would increase the amount of time required to complete the project.

Compare quotes for a good deal

To save money when hiring scaffolding, it’s important to compare at least three quotes from different rental companies before deciding on which company to choose. Select the company that has good quality scaffolding and offer the best deal; this is especially important when your project is a big one that requires large sums of money and a long period to complete.

Select a company that offers on-site visits and assessment

Whether for a construction or home improvement project—regardless of the size of your project—select a company that offers free on-site visits. By having a professional visit and assess your site, they’ll be able to make informed recommendations on the correct quantity of scaffolding your project would require; this gives you protection from overspending, saving you money in the process.  

house with scaffolding and skip outside

Make enquiries on the shortest possible period of hire

A long minimum period of hiring usually results in builders and homeowners losing money. It would be more cost-effective to hire scaffolding for shorter periods. In other words, you’ll save money if you go with a company that offers the best and shortest possible period of hiring, especially if your project is a short-term one.

Hire from a company with public liability insurance

To save money, consider hiring your scaffolding only from a company with public liability insurance and whose staff members have the right insurance coverage; this is because, in the case of an accident, the public liability insurance would cover the firm.

Watch out for out-of-hours charges

Select a company that can install and dismantle scaffolding outside regular business hours, such as on weekends, public holidays, and night shifts without any charges.

Factors impacting the cost of hiring scaffolding in the UK

These are some of the factors involved in the cost of hiring scaffolding in the UK: The location

  • Duration of hire
  • The configuration
  • Whether or not a permit is required
  • Ease of access
  • Number of working levels
  • Height
  • Special requirements

There are many ways to save money while buying or hiring scaffolding equipment. If you need scaffolding for an extended period, investing in quality scaffolding might be the best option and will save you money—short term and long term— helping you cut hiring costs. In that case, however, you buy from a trusted manufacturer that offers the best deal.

If your project is a short-term one, you may want to consider hiring scaffolding equipment. Only hire your scaffolding equipment from a company that is registered with the National Access and Scaffolding Confederation (NASC). Such companies usually have public and employer’s liability insurance and will charge you within the range of the current industry standard and also provide a professional risk assessment for your project.

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