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10 tips for small and medium-sized builders to cut through red tape

Top tips to make it more manageable.

Housing is one of the top national policy challenges of our time, yet builders and developers are becoming stifled by red tape. In an industry calling out for new homes, red tape can be a real headache for small construction firms. In fact, we believe it's important to get the job done quicker, without cutting corners. How? Here are some tips to make red tape more bearable and manageable:

Stay up-to-date with regulation

There are several useful websites full of useful facts and information on compliance. There’s really no need to be an expert on the field, though knowing your key responsibilities and any changes in the regulations will definitely help.

Focus on what’s important

Get your construction business moving again by prioritising. It’s always a good idea to plan ahead, keeping in mind important deadlines like VAT and fees payments, or planning permissions. This way you’ll feel more in control.

Stick to your schedule

We know some works depend on external factors. If your contractor fails to come to work that day, odds are your building schedule will lag behind. But you can set aside time or specific days in the month to focus on big tasks like doing the books.

Organise your paperwork

Don’t let it pile up. Try to do a bit of paperwork every day, rather than letting it stack up until it turns into a paper mountain that could compete with the Everest.

Is it giving you a headache? Then switch

Loyalty is important but sometimes is just a way of wasting time and energy. If that company you’re working with – whether it is an insurer or a bank – is strangling you with bureaucracy, then maybe it’s time for a change. Some companies, like CRL, strive to tackle red tape bit by bit. Construction can be complicated enough without tripping over extra obstacles. Work only with companies who make your life easier!

Structural Defects Insurance

Share knowledge

And share your experience with others in your industry. Trade associations are a good source of construction specific advice to help you stay informed on issues around compliance. The construction sector is, after all, like a big family. It’s possible to stay up-to-date by using word-of-mouth communication.

Adopt new technology

The construction industry is now facing important changes that will shape its future. Maybe it’s time to ride this new-technologies wave and adopt software deals that can save you time and money. There are plenty of apps and software that will assist you with tasks like banking, budgeting, or scheduling. All of them could make your business more streamlined and efficient. Try to identify what causes the biggest headache in your business and outsource the task whenever possible.

Become a member

Membership to groups like the Forum of Private Business and the Federation of Small Businesses will give you regular email updates on legal, tax and HR issues as well as advice helplines and industry guidance. Membership typically starts at


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