Builders’ Merchants

11 October 2023 – 2 Minute Read

Are builders merchants and builders the same thing?

No, builders’ merchants and builders are not the same thing. While a builder will come into your home or commercial site to complete building or repair work, a builders’ merchant specialises in supplying builders and members of the public with the materials they need to get the job done. They often supply a wide range of construction materials including specialist parts that are not always easily available in DIY stores.

Can non-trade buy from builders merchants?

Yes, non-trade can buy from builders’ merchants. It used to be the case that builders’ merchants were used exclusively by builders but now almost all merchants are open to the public. There are some well-known merchants that have extended their branches across the UK, but there are also many independent merchants still operating around the country who welcome non-trade buyers.

Which builders’ merchants?

There are many factors to consider when deciding which builders’ merchants to use. Search on to find a builders’ merchant close to you. Each merchant will offer its own benefits. If you choose to shop with a larger brand, they are likely to be able to provide popular materials quickly and may also be used to members of the public. If you choose a local firm, you may be able to ask them to source specialist materials for you. The most popular, professional local firms will also often be happy to spend more time helping you choose the right materials for your project.

How to buy from builders’ merchants?

You can buy materials from national builders’ merchants in the same way you would from a normal DIY store. However, if you are buying a large amount or sourcing materials from a local merchant, you may need to order in advance. If you are buying in large quantities, remember that you may be able to negotiate a discount.

Do builders’ merchants charge VAT?

Yes, builders’ merchants charge the standard VAT rate of 20%. Some merchants will include this in the quoted price, while others will provide prices without VAT. Make sure you check with your merchant before you commit to buying materials.

How to find a good builders’ merchants?

The best builders merchant for you will depend on the type of materials you want and your location. It is always worth checking what merchants you have locally and then taking the time to visit each one to see what products they stock. Many larger merchants will have lots of stock and can provide materials for large projects straight from the yard. Some smaller merchants may need to order materials on your behalf but they are often able to provide a more personalised service, or deliver specialist materials if you need something slightly different. A quality builders’ merchant should also offer a trading account, which will help you save money if you are buying large quantities or making regular purchases.