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Best Steel Building Suppliers: How To Choose The Right Steel Buildings Company UK

BEST STEEL BUILDING SUPPLIERS

You’re ready to start your steel building project. But now you face the challenge of choosing the best steel building suppliers for the job.

It can be quite overwhelming with the number of steel building suppliers in the UK, all claiming to be the “best steel building company” or the “leading steel building supplier”.

So that leaves the question, how do you choose the right steel building supplier for you? In this article, we’ll answer that question for you – giving you the things you should look out for, the questions to ask and a guide on choosing the right one.

Firstly, why choose a steel building?

Where do we start?

Steel offers a number of benefits over more traditional building types (such as brick and mortar). Firstly, it benefits from being both incredibly strong and lightweight compared to other building materials. Because of this, it’s incredibly durable. Steel buildings can withstand tough weather conditions – snow, wind, rain, storms… you name it, a steel building will handle it all with ease.

They’re incredibly easy to maintain which means they’re extremely cost effective. Because of how they’re made, they’re very easy to change and adapt as required by the owner. If you need to move or extend your building, you can do that with ease.

In short – they’re more durable, flexible and reliable than traditional buildings – whilst being incredibly cost-effective. To add the cherry on top, steel benefits from being almost 100% recyclable so is an environmentally sound purchase too.

6 things to look for when choosing the best steel building supplier

There are a number of things we would recommend you look for when choosing the best steel building supplier for your project. Let’s dive into them, in no particular order.

Product fit & quality

Of course, one of the most important things you need to know is that you’re buying a quality product. If you decide to work with a supplier that provides a sub-par product, it might be cheaper in the short-run but will only end up in disappointment as things start to go wrong.

You want to make sure the company uses good, high-quality steel. No good supplier will cut costs by using inferior metals. The easiest way to do this is to look for a CE mark. This confirms the product has passed specialised tests and meets all standards. It’s a guarantee of quality.

Once you’re confident the supplier you’re looking at uses quality materials, it’s then important to make sure they can supply the type of steel building you want. There are different types of steel buildings, broken into three main categories: Commercial, Agricultural and Domestic.

Within those categories, there are hundreds of different customisation options available to you from steel colour to door placements, to guttering to windows. Not all steel building suppliers will be able to provide all the customisation options you want – so check on that and ensure they’ll be able to provide you with the steel building that best fits your needs and wants.

As an example, at Vanguard, all of our steel materials are CE-marked, with the highest levels of quality control. It’s a non-negotiable for us. Our steel is made from pre-galvanised, cold-rolled steel in accordance with BS5950 part 5. They are pre-engineered to your exact requirements using our software – so there’s no limit to how you design the perfect building.

Price

Next up we’ve got the one on everyone’s lips: price.

Finding a steel building supplier that can build the perfect building whilst also staying within (or under) your budget is important. The last thing you want is to design a building only to find yourself blowing your budget and having extra, hidden fees attached.

The cost of steel buildings can vary based on a huge number of factors such as size, customisation and location.

With that in mind, it’s good to look at steel building suppliers who have invested in technology to reduce the overall cost and suppliers who provide financing options to their customers to make the purchase more manageable. There’s no getting away from it – steel buildings, like any other type of building, can be expensive to build so it’s important that you get value for your money.

Finding the right finance option can be equally as important as finding the right building supplier as you need to make sure the financial plan suits your situation. Again, you don’t want to be stuck to a finance option with ridiculous rates.

At Vanguard Steel Buildings, we’ve invested heavily in systems to reduce the cost for our customers. For example, our proprietary software allows us to design your building with the engineering already built into the system – substantially reducing fees for things like architects, draftsmen and structural engineers. Also, because our volume of supply is so strong, we’re able to purchase the raw materials at competitive rates.

Experience

This is one not to be skipped. If you’re spending a considerable amount of money on a steel building, you want to know it’s going to be done right. And so with that in mind, it’s vital you work with a supplier that has experience in the industry.

Not just because they’ve “been there and done it” but you want to make sure your supplier will be around to provide support for as long as you need them. If they’ve made warrant claims, you don’t want to find out they’ve gone out of business!

Take some time to look at the steel building supplier’s portfolio and make sure they’ve got experience supplying and erecting the type of building you’re looking for. Their portfolio should have lots of pictures and details of all their past jobs which will give you peace of mind that you’re in safe hands.

Don’t just look at their portfolio, though. Look at their reviews online. Websites such as Trustpilot are great for this – or simply just Google! Make sure they have more positive reviews than negative ones.

Timescales

Another important factor to consider is what sort of timelines you can expect from the supplier. You want to work with a steel building supplier that can work to the speeds you need them to – whether that’s quickly for an urgent job or slowly for a complex job that needs more thought and design time.

Most steel building suppliers will offer you a free quote. You should expect that quotation to come back within 24 hours of your request. If it doesn’t, that’s a red flag. After the quotation phase, there is typically a design phase, where all the drawings and calculations are done. This takes slightly longer, so you should expect that within 5-10 days.

Once you’ve placed your order, most steel building suppliers should be able to have your order with you within 6-8 weeks, but again this can vary based on the complexity of the job.

All in all, one of the most important things to consider is just how timely the steel building supplier is when communicating with you. If they take a long time to respond to emails, or their phone never gets answered, it’s probably a smart idea to find another supplier.

At Vanguard Steel Buildings, we aim to get all quotes back within 6 working hours of receiving your enquiry and for buildings to be delivered within 4-6 weeks. We aim to be as fast as possible to give you as much time as you need to make the right decision.

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Process & professionalism

Any good steel building supplier should have its own process when it comes to the quotation, design and supply of your building. Purchasing a steel building and choosing a steel building supplier can be a daunting process, so it’s important the supplier you choose has a process you can follow.

If they are experienced, they’ll have built hundreds of buildings and should thus have a proven process for customer happiness.

At Vanguard, we’ve worked tirelessly to make sure our customer experience process is one that leaves our customers happy and satisfied at every step of their project. I will outline it below to give you an understanding of what a good process looks like.

  1. Request a free online quote
  2. Our design team get to work straight away to provide a rough mockup and quote within 6 working hours.
  3. Once you’re happy with your quote, you then work with our design team to customise and change the building as you see fit. This process takes 5-10 days unless done over the phone, then it can take a lot less time.
  4. Once you’re happy with your building, we’ll send you the drawing and calculations for you to sign off.
  5. We then move on to the logistics. We’ll confirm a delivery date and discuss any site restrictions with you, ensuring the driver can deliver the product with no issues. Delivery is usually 4-6 weeks from sign-off (subject to industry lead times).
  6. The steel building will be erected.

The suppliers you speak to should be able to walk you through their process including timescales (see above!) for each part. Internally, we have set processes and procedures for each step of the process to ensure it’s as smooth as possible with no delays. No job is too small or too hard, we take care of the entire process from start to finish.

Warranties and guarantees

It’s important to know that once you’ve got your building that it’s going to be there for as long as you want it to be! And so it’s important to check that the company you work with offers warranties or guarantees on their workmanship and products in case anything goes wrong during installation or in the lifetime of the product.

Make sure you read up on the warranty policies to give yourself peace of mind that nothing is going to go wrong with your building… or if it does that you don’t find yourself out of pocket!

At Vanguard Steel Buildings, we are committed to not just providing our customers with the highest-quality steel buildings on the market but also the best customer experience. All of our steel buildings come with a Kingspan comprehensive materials warranty that covers the structural integrity of the cladding for a period of up to 25 years, including colour and structural integrity of insulated panels.

We also guarantee that our steel will not rust or corrode with up to 20 years guarantee. Our buildings are constructed by experts who take pride in their work. We guarantee to make any necessary repairs or corrections free of charge within the first year of ownership. If anything goes wrong, you can call our customer service team 24/7!

There we have it – the 6 key things you need to look out for when choosing the best steel building supplier for your project. In the next section, we’re going to cover the steps we recommend you take to choose the right supplier.

How to pick the right steel building supplier

Now you know the 6 key things to consider when looking for a steel building supplier. You’ve got all the information you need and you’re ready to go. Next up, it’s time to find the perfect supplier. Here’s how we suggest you approach the steel building buying process. Or at least, here’s how we’d approach it:

1. First, head to Google and start searching for things like:

“Steel building supplier”
“Steel building supplier UK”
“Best steel building company”
“Steel building company near me”

As you do this, you’ll start to see lots of steel building suppliers. Create an initial list of suppliers. Now we’ll go onto their website and do a little research on them all. We’re going to filter them down now – so any supplier that doesn’t fill you with confidence, remove from the list.

2. Review all of the websites you find to see whether or not they cover the 6 key things we covered above. If they don’t talk about those things on their website, move on to the next supplier. As a reminder, you’re looking for:

  • Do they provide the type of steel building you want?
  • Do they talk about price at all? Do they fit your budget?
  • Do they have the experience (portfolios, reviews etc.)
  • Do they discuss timescales? Does it fit with your plan?
  • Do they have a process? Do they look professional?
  • Do they offer warranties and guarantees?

3. Spend time looking at their steel building portfolio or gallery to ensure they’ve built buildings like the one you are looking for. Also, look online for reviews and testimonials from other customers. If they’ve got lots of proof and look like they have happy customers, keep them on the list. If it’s hard to see their work, you may want to consider removing them.

4. By now you should have a good shortlist of trustworthy-looking steel building suppliers. What you’re going to do now is contact them all to ask for a quote. As we mentioned above, most suppliers should provide you with a free quote and should respond within 24 hours, so this shouldn’t take too long. Ensure you provide all of your building requirements so they can give you an accurate quote.

5. Once you receive your steel building quotes back, spend some time reviewing them. Again, you want to look at the 6 key considerations from above. Don’t just scroll to the price, look at all of the considerations to ensure you go with the best supplier for you. You must get everything – all warranties and guarantees – in writing, so make sure all of that is included in your quote.

6. Respond to the suppliers with any questions you might have and if the steel building supplier has buildings near you, you could even request to go and visit one of their projects or get a customer reference (of course, the owner would need to agree to this). It’s important at this stage not to just go with the cheapest company or the first to reply. You are probably raring to go, but it’s important that you take your time at this stage and make the right decision. Here are some questions you could ask each steel building supplier:

Are you licenced?
Do you have a local build team?
Are you specialists in steel buildings?
Do you have all the necessary insurance?
How experienced are you? Can I see your work?
Will you provide structural calculations as standard (or only requested?)

The best steel building companies will happily answer any questions without fuss.

7. Finally, after whittling down your shortlist based on all of the steps above, it’s time to make your final decision and engage one of the suppliers officially for your project! Once you accept their quote, you’ll move into the design phase. Once everything is signed off, you’ll be asked to pay a deposit for your building

Work with the best steel building supplier in the UK

There we have it! When you set out to find the best steel building supplier, it’s a daunting task, but this article should have provided you with all the information you need to make the best decision. We’ve walked you through the 6 key considerations and how we recommend you choose a steel building supplier.

At Vanguard Steel Buildings, we invest a lot of time into writing guides like these because we’re dedicated to helping our customers make the right decision – even if that means working with our competitors! The steel buildings industry is relatively archaic, with next to no education for buyers online, and we’re on a mission to change that.

If you’re looking for the best steel building supplier in the UK, look no further than Vanguard Steel Buildings. We have the strongest approach to all of the key considerations than any other supplier in the UK – from our price match to our bullet-proof guarantees. Simply click “Get a free quote” below and you’ll receive a free quote within 6 working hours.

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