Late tradespeople are costing the UK 190 million working hours - equivalent to £2.2 billion a year.
New research from Direct Line Home Response 24 found that when calling at a home to fix a problem, 79 per cent of tradespeople were up to two hours late and 12 per cent were up to a four hours late.
By giving customers unreasonable and unrealistic timings businesses are left with a major void in their work force as employees take hours off to wait for the tardy tradespeople.
When asked how long people expect to be away from work waiting for a tradesperson, over half (56 per cent) said they would be between two and five hours.
An alarming 16 per cent felt it could be as long as seven hours. Half those surveyed said they need a tradesperson to visit their home twice a year and one in ten are forced to do this four times a year or more.
Business manager for Direct Line Home Response 24 service, Kate Syred, said: "As our research shows, tardy tradespeople are costing UK businesses dear as people are forced to take time away from work to wait for them."
She continued: "The visiting times offered by many tradespeople are inflexible, rarely fall outside working hours and as our research shows, can leave us stuck at home waiting for hours for them to arrive."
Tradespeople's vague timings are illustrated by the fact 41 per cent simply give a morning or afternoon time slot and 37 per cent just give a day.
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