Book A Demo

7 Best Lead Generation Companies for UK Building Contractors

May 30, 2024

Lead-generation companies for building contractors are certainly a quick way of getting in touch with potential customers. The most sustainable way to grow your business will always be to build a compelling service, ideally in a specific region or niche to maintain an effective margin and build word-of-mouth referrals. However, buying leads can be an effective way to jump-start growth, perhaps if you are entering a new market or could do with a marketing boost.  

So, in this review, we compare the top seven lead-gen companies for UK building contractors and weigh up their pros and cons.


The advice provided is entirely impartial, and BuildPartner maintains no affiliations with any lead-generation companies.


3 Types of Lead-Generation Companies

Before we dive into the nuts and bolts of who does what best, there are three main types of lead-gen companies to be aware of:

  1. Directories – pay a subscription for visibility, such as Checkatrade and Houzz.
  2. Lead generation – pay companies per lead, such as Rated People and MyBuilder.
  3. Introducers – companies charge commissions for introducing you to clients, such as Resi.

Each has a slightly different payment model with its own service packages. We’ll share the costs associated with trading with each type and their Trustpilot rating—an industry-standard credibility marker.

The Risks Of Relying On Lead-Gen Companies

Before we dive into the seven best lead-gen companies for construction firms, it’s important to stress that for greater long-term rewards, and to build lasting trust and credibility, you will likely need to focus on:

  •   Building an area of expertise
  •   Establishing a clear market position
  •   Cultivating a network of referrals

Often, when businesses look to external solutions (such as lead-gen companies), they turn their attention away from the internal aspects of their proposition that need immediate attention. But lead-gen companies aren’t a substitute for solidifying your proposition. Those who invest in their unique strengths are better positioned to thrive and adapt to market changes.

Different platforms have different effects on your brand but the level of appropriateness of the leads, your ability to stand out and the resultant relationship are all at their best via a direct referral. 

1. Checkatrade


Checkatrade generates leads for construction professionals by featuring them in a trusted directory of vetted tradespeople with verified reviews, offering a subscription-based model—meaning you only pay for the subscription, not per lead.


Checkatrade brings qualified leads to you. They discover your profile, learn about your services, and then reach out to you if they’re interested in hiring you. This removes most of the legwork, and it means you won’t be following up with and paying for cold or fake leads.

Checkatrade is a much simpler subscription model than Rated People since you only pay a monthly or annual fee. You don’t pay per lead, though the monthly subscription is much higher.

With over three million searches each month, it’s the UK’s number one trade directory—and it focuses exclusively on that, without the bells and whistles, like with Houzz, which includes software such as expense tracking and project scheduling.

Those looking for a low-maintenance lead-gen system that requires minimal effort will likely benefit from Checkatrade. You can sit back and wait for leads to come in rather than chasing work and promising the world when bidding for jobs using pay-per-lead services.

As a bonus, Checkatrade sends out free vinyl and marketing assets to allow you to display your Checkatrade accreditation on your company vehicles.

One huge benefit that draws customers to Checkatrade is their 12-month homeowner guarantee. In the unlikely event of a dispute about substandard work, the £1,000 guarantee provides homeowners extra reassurance for any work booked through Checkatrade.

It puts them at ease, and the sentiment when engaging in direct contact is on the whole noticeably more positive.


Checkatrade’s monthly subscription prices vary depending on the industry in which you work. If you’re an architectural or design firm, you can expect to pay more than a gardener.

There are four tiers of memberships: Approved, Lite, Standard, and Pro.

Be careful when signing up. You can’t view the subscription plans side by side, so you’ll need to adjust the sliding scale to select the right plan.

Also, to confuse matters, the widget shows you the price per month for the first six months but quotes a much higher figure in small print (usually an additional 50%) for the remaining six months.

A membership for your first year will cost anywhere from around £500 to £2,500 per year.

And then after that?

Well, so many tradespeople have been stung by price hikes. In one review on Trustpilot, a user remarked how they paid £756 in their first year, but their renewal price came out at £2,160.

New members get a preferential deal. Don’t expect any discounts for loyalty.


  •   Type: Directory
  •   Cost: Between £50 and £250 per month
  •   Trustpilot Rating: 4.8/5.0, from 51,488 reviews
  •   Link:

2. Houzz


Houzz is a platform that allows contractors to showcase their work and connect with homeowners through a subscription-based visibility model.

Houzz Pro isn’t just a directory to market your services, it’s a digital toolbox that includes a 3D floor planner, invoicing system, online payments, expense tracking, time tracking, reports, and project scheduling.


Before committing to a paid subscription, you can take out a 30-day free trial.

When subscribing to Houzz, you have four options (all prices in USD):

  •   Starter: $85 per month
  •   Essential: $129 per month
  •   Pro: $199 per month
  •   Custom: not disclosed

After signing up for one of these profiles, your business will be visible to homeowners hunting on Houzz. You can easily create or upload engaging videos that showcase your business.

Reputation is everything—and one thing that Houzz does better than the rest is helping you acquire reviews. They provide templates and integration tools that allow you to easily send review requests to your contacts. These reviews automatically appear on your Houzz profile, so you don’t need to manually update your profile.

One useful tool for converting prospects is the ability to host video meetings. Houzz lets potential leads book a video meeting with you directly from your profile and directory listing—something no other platform in this review does.


Houzz Pro is pricey for a standalone lead-generation service. It’ll cost you an additional $60 per month per user, so those costs will rack up if you’re a medium to large business that wants to connect employees across departments.

Besides, many established firms already have software solutions for 3D floor plans, takeoff estimations, and email marketing. If you already have these solutions in place, you may be unassumingly duplicating costs.

Houzz Pro is better suited to construction firms looking for a new holistic approach to their operations, rather than those looking exclusively for lead generation.

Also, payments for work are encouraged through the platform. If customers choose to pay through Houzz, you will be subject to a 4.5% payment handling charge.


  •   Type: Directory
  •   Cost:

o   Starter: $85 per month

o   Essential: $129 per month

o   Pro: $199 per month

o   Custom: not disclosed

  •   Trustpilot Rating: 4.0/5.0, from 15,173 reviews
  •   Link:


3. Federation of Master Builders – FMB

Federation of Master builders

Established in 1941, the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) is the largest trade association in the UK construction industry, and it connects members with homeowners seeking quality builders, using a subscription-based model.

It’s an independent, nonprofit organisation that’s run by members for members, with support from a senior management team.


To earn FMB’s badge of quality, you need to pass a strict vetting process and independent inspection of your work. While this involves more administration compared to other lead-generation companies, it adds to your overall credibility and reassures clients of your high standards. It helps give you a foot in the door over other builders who are quoting for the same job.

You also get a host of other membership benefits, such as free downloadable contract templates, expert advice with a business helpline (whether it’s HR, health and safety, legal, or tax matters), dispute resolution support, free online training, and a 10% discount at Trade Point.

As a nonprofit, the FMB works with the media and the government to raise awareness of issues in the construction industry. Membership fees are reinvested to support you.

In the latest manifesto, FMB is lobbying the government to address the country’s shortage of homes. They want the government to:

  •   Create a dedicated secretary of state for housing
  •   Reduce VAT on repair, maintenance, and improvement (RMI) work
  •   Introduce a licensing scheme to rid the industry of cowboy builders

In taking out a membership with the FMB, you’re advocating reform in the construction industry and supporting a team who are fighting for it.

The FMB has a track record of success, having previously influenced policy changes such as the introduction of the Green Homes Grant and securing additional funding for vocational training in the building sector.


To become an FMB-registered contractor, you need to apply by completing a short online form. A representative will then reach out to you and explain how the process of becoming a member works.

Once the administration is complete, they’ll have an independent assessor visit one of your sites for a day to carry out an inspection of your work to check it meets high standards. The overall application process takes around two to three weeks.

Jumping through these hoops is unlikely to be worthwhile for smaller businesses, even though the FMB has a proud history of supporting small and medium-sized firms.

There are only 73 active members using FMB, most of which are national businesses, such as Isuzu, Openreach, BP, and Trade Point.

There’s also a lack of price transparency for becoming a member, but you can expect to pay around

£53 and an inspection fee of £11 per month (in the first year only).

That’s expensive when there is no indication of how many prospects will view your profile or reach out to you. Still, payments are monthly and you can cancel anytime.


  •   Type: Directory
  •   Cost: £53.51 (+VAT) and inspection fee of £10.92 per month (+VAT)
  •   Trustpilot Rating: 4.3/5.0, from 629 reviews
  •   Link:

4. MyBuilder


MyBuilder helps construction professionals generate leads by allowing them to bid on jobs posted by homeowners needing trusted tradespeople, with a pay-per-lead payment model.

They charge when a customer shortlists you for the job, which is usually between £10 to £50, depending on the job’s size and nature.


Signing up for MyBuilder is free, and you don’t need to commit to an expensive rolling monthly contract. Once you’re set up, MyBuilder will send you leads that match your skills and work area. You can respond to as many of these as you like when it suits you.

If customers are interested in your bid, they’ll shortlist you. So you’ll only pay a fee when they’re actively engaged and when you have expressed interest.

Before bidding, you get full visibility of how many other tradespeople have expressed interest and how many have been shortlisted. This helps you gauge whether applying is still worthwhile.

With three main tabs to navigate—New leads, Interested, and Contacts—MyBuilder’s user interface is the simplest platform to use and navigate, which is perfect for technophobes.

This makes it incredibly easy to keep track of and respond to your leads.


If you apply for several projects and are shortlisted for multiple jobs, the costs start mounting up. Customers are unaware of how tradespeople are charged, so they often liberally shortlist tradespeople, up to a maximum of 10.

In a sense, customers are encouraged to shortlist; it’s only when they do that they’re able to read a message from you.

But that can also mean that by the time you follow up with them, they’re disgruntled from having already dealt with so many other contractors.

Many customers complain about the barrage of communication they receive from tradespeople, meaning the experience overall is much less customer-friendly.


  •   Type: Pay per lead
  •   Cost: Account creation is free, with a fee of between £10 to £50 for each shortlisting
  •   Trustpilot Rating: 4.6/5.0, from 50,865 reviews
  •   Link:

5. Rated People

Rated people

Rated People connects construction experts with homeowners seeking reliable tradespeople, providing a steady flow of leads, and it operates on a pay-per-lead basis.

You simply choose the location you are available to work in, and you’ll see a list of homeowners who need your help.


One of the delights of using Rated People is that there are no shortlists and no waiting for the phone to ring. The platform puts you in complete control.

You buy leads when it suits you, and no more than three tradespeople can buy the same one. This means you stand to achieve a much higher win rate. Once you buy a lead, you get immediate access to the homeowner’s details, so you can follow up instantly.

If, for whatever reason, the lead is not contactable (say, if they’ve used a fake email address), you can get a credit back for the failed lead. You don’t have that luxury with other pay-per-lead platforms like MyBuilder.

The Rated People ecosystem is so easy to use. You can chat with customers on the go, get alerts for new leads, and request reviews for work in just a couple of taps.


When signing up for Rated People, their team will follow up with a phone call (usually within 24 hours) to explain how Rated People works. It doesn’t take a genius to realise that this is basically a smokescreen to sell you the benefits of using their platform before sharing the price with you.

Their most popular subscription costs £35 a month, which isn’t unreasonable, but you have to pay per lead too. So if you have periods where you’re too busy to pick up extra jobs, you’ll still be paying for the service, unlike with MyBuilder (where you only pay per lead).

Also, jobs are only live on Rated People for three working days, whereas Checkatrade keeps them live for around 30 days.

While this keeps the market competitive, it doesn’t give you a great window of opportunity to respond to job posts. You need to be routinely checking Rated People two to three times a week to ensure you don’t miss any.

If you have any issues and need to speak to customer service, finding contact information (whether email or phone) is virtually impossible. If you do enough digging around in the “Help hub”, you’ll eventually stumble across a live chat option.


  •   Type: Pay per lead
  •   Cost: Leads cost £2 to £65; monthly subscription of £35.
  •   Trustpilot Rating: 4.4/5.0, from 17,172 reviews
  •   Link:


6. Bark


Bark connects construction professionals with potential clients who are looking for a wide range of building and renovation services (as well as other services outside the construction industry), charging per lead to help you grow your business.

After creating a free account with Bark, customers can find you and reach out to you. Bark will also send you emails and notifications with relevant leads in your area. Not only that, but you can browse job posts.

Bark charges a fee for each introduction (paid for in credits), where you get each potential customer’s phone number and email address.


To some, no doubt spending £230.40 (ex VAT) for 180 credits may sound expensive, but Bark doesn’t lock you into a paid monthly subscription like other lead-generation companies.

This puts you in complete control over managing your workload. Your credits never expire, so there’s no pressure to use them within a certain period.

With 180 credits, you can usually buy around 12 leads, which works out at around £23 per lead. Bark is so confident that you’ll get hired at least once, that they will issue you with a full refund if you don’t. It’s a no-risk lead-generation strategy, and you can cancel anytime.

There are no commissions or hidden fees with Bark, nor is there a risk of a subscription price hike.

When a lead posts a job, a maximum of five professionals can respond to them—and you can always see how many have already been in contact with the job poster.

Contractors with a more sophisticated CRM system can integrate Bark with Hubspot and Zapier, to automatically sync purchased leads and carry out targeted campaigns.


As with any lead-generation service, you can expect leads to ignore your messages or calls. Usually, around one in five prospects will actively engage. But some aren’t always interested in actually going ahead, even though their lead profile says they have high hiring intent.

Also, many tradespeople have noticed that the cost (in credits) for the same job often differs. For example, a 30m2 house extension in the same area costs 12 credits, and another costs 18 credits.

After signing up with your free account, you’ll be encouraged to sign up for the Elite Pro plan, which supposedly helps your profile stand out and rank higher in SEO results. But for £49.95 per month (ex VAT), your money is better spent contacting customers directly.


  •   Type: Pay per lead
  •   Cost: 180 credits for £230.40 (enough for eight to 10 leads)
  •   Trustpilot Rating: 4.2/5.0, from 93,880 reviews
  •   Link:

7. Resi Connect

resi connect

Resi is one of the UK’s largest architectural services, and they provide a Connect service for helping customers find vetted contractors.

As a vetted contractor, you get access to the projects and their design, and you can manage your projects using the online dashboard. Resi will introduce you to customers, and you won’t pay a penny until you land a project.


Resi Connect is a small network of around 150 tradespeople, meaning that you’re not up against dozens of competitors. If you offer a specialist service or cover a certain region, this means your chances of landing a contract are higher.

Resi’s process involves:

  1. Project matching – Resi introduces customers to a selection of suitable contractors.
  2. Client intro – Customers request to meet contractors based on high-level cost estimates.
  3. Client site visit – Resi arranges any necessary site visits and allows you to take over.
  4. Decision-making – Resi’s customer service team handles any tendering queries.
  5. Full handover – Resi confirms the on-site start date and completes a full handover.

It’s a personal service that streamlines the tendering process, eliminating confusion for customers who might be tired of browsing endless listings of amateur tradespeople in online directories.

Not only that, but you can manage your projects using Resi’s online Dashboard to provide quotes, manage important documents, and communicate with the Resi team.

The signup process is subject to background checks and vetting, but getting started takes no more than 30 seconds by filling in your details with your Companies House number and website.


One of the downsides of Resi is account creation. You have to dig deep to find the small section on the Connect page that says “Are you a tradesperson? Get in touch if you're interested in being introduced to Resi customers”.

To sign up, you need to head to the Trade page.

Once your request has been received, Resi will be in touch to start the vetting process and acceptance is not guaranteed

Then, those who are successful in winning a contract are hit with a 5% referral fee—which earns it the title of Most Expensive Lead Generator in this comparison.

Resi charges an agent fee, but the process still requires effort on your behalf, as you need to bid for jobs on the dashboard.

Having learned this, some customers have remarked their disapproval, suggesting that the fee inflates the price of the contract, a cost which is passed on to them—which may affect their overall satisfaction.


  •   Type: Introducer
  •   Cost: ~5% referral fee
  •   Trustpilot Rating: 4.6/5.0, from 589 reviews
  •   Link:


Local Listings for Construction Companies

If you want to pick up more local work, the quickest win for boosting your lead generation is to list your business on:

  •   Google My Business
  •   Bing Places for Business

Local search results are prioritised, especially when a user appends “near me” to their searches. By accumulating reviews on Google and Facebook (which are visible in Bing listings), you can leapfrog the local competition to the top of the local search results.

You don’t need to be in the habit of publishing tonnes of blogs and building a comprehensive SEO strategy to be visible to your local audience.

This is the lowest-hanging fruit of the lead-generation world—and it’s totally free!


Best Lead Generators for Construction Companies

For a steady stream of leads, you might want to take a mixed-methods approach, rather than relying exclusively on one type, such as directories. Whichever type of lead-gen company you use, be sure to track your performance and conversion rates; you want to avoid paying fees if your chosen platform isn’t generating new leads and, most importantly, conversions.

Also, if you’re getting more leads than you can handle, you might want to pause your subscriptions. Paying monthly (rather than annually) for subscriptions might be the most economical choice, especially if your business experiences demand fluctuations.

Overall, good luck! And remember to focus on your business fundamentals and customer satisfaction rather than just buying leads, as tempting as it may seem.

Leave a Reply