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Pocketmags Digital Magazines
Pocketmags Digital Magazines

Sourcing materials abroad

Mike Hardwick looks at the pros and cons of purchasing goods for your build overseas – and what you need to consider before you sign on the dotted line

T he seemingly limitless reach of the internet has transformed our buying habits – and its impact stretches to the self build and renovation market, too. No longer are we restricted to DIY sheds and local merchants. With a range of online suppliers, we can look further afield and even contemplate buying from abroad in our search for the best products and materials.

Sometimes, the items you’re looking for aren’t routinely stocked in the UK. For instance, you might be after a new piece of technology or innovative eco gadget that’s yet to catch on here. Spreading your search to other countries can open up a greater spectrum of choice – but buying abroad is not without risk, and there are a few potential pitfalls that must be avoided. Here’s what you need to know when purchasing outside the UK.

Why buy overseas?

Apart from the obvious increase in choice available, one of the main drivers for buying from abroad is the potential to make significant savings. Some materials – notably tiles, ceramics and sanitaryware – can be much cheaper than in the UK. And if the exchange rate is favourable, you’ll be able to bag an even better bargain.

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About Build It

The March edition of Build It magazine brings you all the inspiration & practical advice you need to complete your home building project on time and on budget, including: • A traditional timber frame house on a quiet Hampshire plot (page 22) • How to build an oak frame home on a budget (page 68) • What you need to know about underfloor heating (page 75) • Windows for renovations (page 78) • How to combine renewables (page 86) • Adding wow factor (page 92) • Common renovation mistakes (page 104) … and more!