The job is a complete mess! Do I still have to pay?

The work is half done – where do we go from here?

Contracts for Work and Materials often involve the incorporation of goods into other goods, property or land. Therefore you cannot simply get your money back and be put back into the same position you were in before the work started. The question is, is the contract severable? It very much depends on what you are having done and what payment plan you have agreed. Upon presentation of the finished item, can you simply say that you are not going to pay for it and you are not going to give them the opportunity to make it good? This may be a little unreasonable, but if you plan to cite a breach in contract due to an absence of reasonable care and skill, you must make it clear that you are rejecting the finished item. If you have accepted it, you may have to pay all or a portion of the price agreed in the contract.

What about work is taking place in phases? Let’s say you are having a conservatory built which involves the payment of four instalments. If after the second instalment it is clear that the work is substandard you can sever the contract at that point and ask them not to return. You can then pursue damages for monies paid and additional sums if any consequential losses have been incurred (the cost of putting right the poor workmanship). If however the builder offers to redo the work, then the reasonable response would be agree, as long as it can be done ‘in reasonable time’. But what if you have lost complete faith in the builders and do not want them back at all? This is also a reasonable response, although you would have to have good grounds to claim a loss of faith. For this reason, it is always advisable to take photos and keep a diary when having any long term building work done, so you have evidence should it ever become a dispute. Many trade bodies representing firms such as builders will offer a dispute resolution service – which is always cheaper and quicker than litigation! Therefore always choose a builder or tradesman who is accredited by a trade body, association or guild which can offer this service.

Common Complaints:

What about contracts for services?

Leave a Comment

50 comments… add one
  • Ian Silver 16 August, 2:42 pm

    We have just got rid of some appalling builders. We have paid more money than the work is worth and will end up suing in the small claims court.
    We have also hung on to their cement mixer in lieu of damages.
    My question is – are we entitled to do this in law?
    Hoping so.

  • Catriona 17 August, 10:27 pm

    Ian, I can totally understand why you have done this, although there is no provision for this in law – otherwise where would you draw the line!? Hang onto it unless they ask for it back, but unless they declare bankrupty you would have a good chance of getting back overpaid funds via the small claim. Regarding costs, if there is no ‘fixed cost’ clause in the contract, your rights are only to be charged at ‘reasonable cost’, but you may have to get quotes from alternative builders to find out what the definition of ‘reasonable’ is. Good luck.

  • Sam 19 August, 1:30 am

    I have sacked a shoddy builder. Some items in my flat have been damaged, some of the work has been done badly and I have had to pay to put it right and complete it. I gave him some money as a deposit but not the full amount. I just wanted to draw a line under it and leave it at that because he is related to me but he is trying to put in a bill for more (part of the original quote). I don’t feel i owe him any of this money. What damages can I claim? For example he damaged the carpet in a few places (paint on one bit and tried to re-fit it after having done some work but did it badly), I have not had this replaced yet because I can’t afford to but can I use this to deduct money from the bill he is trying to put in? Another thing, how do I work out the cost of re-doing certain things i.e. he hung the wall units so they weren’t level and they had to be taken down and rehung but the invoice I have is for the work as a whole not the individual items. Also, he is putting this bill in 3 months after I terminated the contact and wrote to him to that effect, does this have any implications?

  • Catriona 27 August, 9:35 pm

    Sam, have a look at the proceeding section on ‘damages’, which will give you some pointers as to how much you can claim. One of the fundamenmtal aspects of a contract for work and materials is section 13 – that the supplier will carry out the service with reasonable care and skill. Failure to do so is a fundamental breach of contract and one which means you can exercise your right to terminate the contract. It would be reasonable to pay for work which has been satisfactory, but if you have had to ‘undo’ what he has done and pay additional costs to an alternative company, then why should you pay for it? You can claim damages to this effect but it may have to go through the courts if he disputes it. The time elapsed since terminating the contract to submitting his invoice has no legal implication, but would probably not be looked favourably on if tries to take you to court to get it.

  • Pete 25 October, 6:32 pm

    Hi, i bought a flat off plan two years ago via the st james group.One of the reasons i bought the flat was because of the high ceilings.I complete this tuesday, but one of the bedroom ceilings is so low that i cant believe they have been given sign off legally for it.You can get into the room and stand but anyone over 6.2 would pratically touch the ceiling. How do i go about reaching an solution here. Do i need to contact a solictor or a property inspector? Any help, very much appreciated.

  • Catriona 7 November, 12:42 am

    Pete, I’m not sure of the tolerances for ceiling height, but if you have an NHBC warranty, you can contact the NHBC and asked to be advised on the tolerance. If your measurements are outside the allowable tolerance, the NHBC will then carry out their own inspection and request work to tbe caried out by the builder as appropriate. offer snagging inspections prior to legal completion which will advise you on whether everything is to standard or not.

  • Brian hampton 15 November, 11:26 pm

    I had a tiler in last week to do my bathroom only said a couple of days- ya what a mess he has made, tiles not straight board all wonky more grount in the shower tray then on walls, then to top it all the shower trap blocked water pouring out everywhere. Thats a brief discription, the shop owner came told the tiler to fix it, he did to his standards, i’m still not satified asked the owner to get it fixed he said the tiler has spent enough time on this asked me for the payment, i said when he’s completed the job NOW he’s brought 3 guys to my home to intimidate me and said he’s going to take me to a small claim court. What should i do ??

  • Catriona 19 November, 12:58 am

    Brian, You could argue breach of your statutory rights in terms of reasonable care and skill. However, it is clearly a case of your word against his. He has no right in intimidating you in this way, but having said this, try to reach an amicable solution in terms of what needs doing and what are prepared to pay. If you feel some of it is acceptable, you could offer to pay a portion of the total fee. Any small claim will take into account the views of an independent tiler (as an expert witness) who will have to be called in to inspect. Perhaps you could both agree on doing this as a first step?

  • Denise 17 February, 12:29 pm

    We’ve been having a conservatory build by someone recommneded by a friend. We agreed a quote verbally (a mistake, looking back) on the basis that a fully itemised quote would follow (it didn’t). Now, with the building 2/3 complete we have received an itemised invoice for £5000 over the original quote. We cannot afford this and don’t see why we should have to pay, which we have stated to the builder. He maintains that he is still charging a reasonable price. We have already paid over 1/2 the amount of the original quote. Should we take legal advice or contact an ombudsman at this point?

  • Catriona 18 February, 1:12 am

    Denise, while a contract made verbally is still legally binding, a quote cannot be enforced in the same way as an estimate. Refer to this section:
    Just as you have no contract with the builder, he has no contract with you, and therefore does not have the means to force you to pay him what he has requested. You can stop the work, get further estimates from other builders and pursue the original builder through the small claims to recover sums you have now had to pay to a second builder. But it will be hard to prove what you agreed verbally. If the builder is a member of a trade body you can take advantage of any arbitration service they offer. See:

  • Stuart 19 February, 5:43 pm

    We have had an attached garage converted into a dining room. Overall the work was good, but the builder fitted a skylight window which started leaking within 3 months.
    The leak is quite prominent, on rainy days there can be three streams of water dripping from one edge of the ceiling recess; paint and plaster has been waterlogged and is starting to flake away, and there are tea-coloured water stains forming around the base. Even on damp, misty days with no direct rain the window has leaked (!).
    From a visual inspection from on the garage roof (the window is built onto a raised and angled frame on top of the flat roof), it appears as though the water is seeping through the airvent instead of dripping off it – difficult to describe but the airvent has an overhanging edge which the frame, perhaps, isn’t vertical enough for it to work correctly.
    We don’t have a written guarantee, we didn’t pay by credit card, and the builder has started diverting my calls to answerphone. Every conversation up until now has been amicable from both sides but his promises to call back or fix it next week have not led to any action.

    Do we have any rights to ask for him to redress this, or do we need to find ourselves another builder?
    Thanks for any advice.

  • Shaun 16 March, 2:35 pm

    Stuart I know exactly how you feel, I really do

    We had a builder undertake an extension which took 14 months to get signed-off. The work was taking a long time to complete and the builder appeared in no rush to finish it.

    I raised a concern with the following:

    * The builder in person and by writing on a number of occasions
    * NICEIC – due to poor electrical work and no electrical certificate
    * Corgi (as was) – bad fitting of boiler etc
    * Local Council regarding completion certificate
    * Trading Standards – relating to the above

    NICEIC; considerable correspondence, would not accept pictures or videos. Regional Inspector turned up with the builder who made him complete the work. All the bathroom lights had failed and I informed the inspector who said it was my word against his even though I had evidence to the contrary. Plug socks were not affixed correctly however the inspector said he could only request the builder do better in the future. The new electric box was installed in June it was December and only due to the inspector I received this.

    Corgi; Found that the boiler had not been installed correctly. Pipe diameters, fixing screws, flue etc. They passed the report to Trading standards. Gas meter was built over, Corgi highlighted this was illegal to do so but the builder had done this even though we had stated it was to be positioned outside. A Certified Registered Gas fitter (a friend of the builders) provided a gas certificate even though the Corgi inspector said it would be illegal for them to do so given the issues found.

    Local Authority; Contacted them as I required a completion certificate. Took them over five months before I received the certificate from them due to the builder not complying with their requests to finish off the work even though they could take action against him after 30 days. Mentioned on a number of occasions about the Gas meter stating it was illegal, the reply ‘it was nothing to do with them’. On the day the council inspector came out the builder indicated he would give him ‘the money in the pub’, read what you want into that.

    Trading standards; Contacted them initially about this and they opened a case and asked me to keep them updated which I did and on the last occasion they said they could not do anything as it was a civil matter. Frustrating much!! What are they in place for?

    With all of the above, I had made notes, got video and voice evidence but the local authority, trading standards and NICIEC did not in my opinion do much. The builder is still in the area doing bad work and lives a few doors away from me!

    What is the point of having these bodies in place if they are unwilling to take action against even though the consumer has got all the evidence and given the builder sufficient time to complete the work in a timely manner?

    To be honest this has been a nightmare and I am still rectifying work not completed by the builder a year down the line. The windows are loose, the pointing is a mess, the architraves are badly fitted and many many other things are wrong.

    He has indicated if I take him to court he will fold his business and start a new one. I go with a solicitor and it could cost me the earth!

    Where can I go from here to get some form of recompense with this cowboy builder! Any advice would be welcome, please!

    • Russell 24 October, 12:29 pm

      Hi Stuart

      I’m a journalist currently looking into a possible story about how cuts have effected Trading Standards departments across the country and would be very interested in speaking to you about your experience with them. You can email me on


  • Dawn Alexander 19 March, 10:30 pm

    Hi, We have just had a porch fitted. We have paid £750 for phase one and then £700 for phase two. We have a remaining £1400 to pay once the porch is complete. It is now complete but there are 2 windows which they have put obscure glass in when I asked for clear. I rang the company and he said sorry and he forgot to update the order as I had changed my mind. He said that the new panes will come in next thursday and it’s then a 10 minute job to replace them. Should i pay the £1400 now as he asked or wait until glass replaced or pay part now and the rest when glass changed? I just don’t know. He seems genuine and they have done an excellent job and I am very pleased with the porch. Any advice would be welcome. thanks Dawn

  • Zoe Brody 21 April, 9:29 pm

    Hi, I really hope someone can help me with this.. I moved into my house 4 and a half years ago and at that time employed a local plumber to install a new water tank and toilet. I paid him £500. After the work had been done I had a lot of problems with the plumbing, and some of the work he had done had to be reversed as I was subsequently advised that it was incorrect.
    He has now come back to say that the original quote was for £750 and so I still owe him £250 plus another £184 for materials. I have lived in the same village as this man for over 4 years and not once has he mentioned this – can he still lay claim to this? I honestly do not beleive he is entitled to the money as I do not believe the original quote was for £750 (surely it’s up to him to provide evidence of this?) and his work was not up to standard. He has taken to calling at my home in the evening and telling me that he now has a claim to part of my house if I don’t pay him.
    Any advice would be much appreciated..should I tell him to take me to the small claims court? He’s paid cash in hand so I wouldn’t imagine that he’d want to do that
    Many thanks

  • Andy 4 November, 4:52 pm


    We ordered a kitchen from Edinburgh IKEA using their full measure/design/supply/install service. Total bill = £8625

    Both the process and the finished product have been unsatisfactory.

    We were left with temporary worktops for 6 weeks, as the delivered worktops were of incorrect sized and spec.

    Despite remedial works, there remains an ugly misalignment between some cabinets.

    Some cabinets have begun to sag, obstructing the opening of other cabinet doors.

    The finished kitchen still does not match the design we had agreed when we placed our order.

    We had to spend a total of 6 hours cleaning up after the installers, including scrubbing plaster off surfaces.

    Getting IKEA to put things right has taken at least another 12 hours, plus having to take a day’s leave to be there during a return visit for remedial works.

    We’re having to set aside another day to be around for yet another visit to sort out the sagging cabinets.

    All this has taken place against a backdrop of the arrival of our newborn baby. All works should have been completed two weeks before her arrival – instead this has dragged on for nearly 5 months.

    In response to a claim of £2000 for lost time, inconvenience and distress, they’ve offered us £200 for goodwill.

    Is this reasonable? Could we conceivably achieve a better settlement (£1-2,000?) through Small Claims at the Sheriff’s Court? Should we be getting Trading Standards involved?

    Thanks for any advice


  • Cindy Lawrence 6 July, 5:10 pm

    We have recently had new fascias and guttering and soffits fitted by a local firm. They asked for payment on completion which we gave. On closer inspection there are many faults and we feel that the fitting of the goods is not to an acceptable standard. We have allowed the firm to return to rectify the problems but they appear to have made the situation worse. We feel that they are incapable of completing the job to an acceptable standard, even though he claims his work is of a high standard.

    What course of action is available to us?

    Thank you

  • Claire 3 November, 5:17 pm

    Hi, I have recently has work done by a friend’s dad who is apparently a legitimate builder. We we’re assured the house would be ready by our moving in date (a month ago) and it is still not. Now the builder has just left the job half finished. Because we know the builder, when he asked for more money than I was comfortable paying before the job was finished, he said he would be unable to buy essentials for us moving in to the house so, reluctantly, we gave him it as his son is a very close friend of my partners. As a result we now only owe him £100 pound for the work which is no where near finished. I’m now doubting if he even is a legitimate builder and don’t know how to deal with the situation or if we have any rights?

  • Richard 27 November, 10:49 am

    Builders are still working on refurbishing a small brick built outbuilding. We have in essence 2 main problems. One with the finish quality of the cement rendering used externally, and the other is the finished construction of the concrete window sills. Both of these in our view are substandard and are not of a reasonable quality. The builder disagrees.

    Is there anyone I can go to for advice on whether the work is in fact substandard or some procedure that I should follow?

    This was a recommended large firm of builders.


  • Heather France 20 June, 8:28 pm

    I got a roofer in to repair a leak in the roof of our house. He told me that the flat roof needed re-felting so I employed him to do this paying him £480. The leak continued. I got him to go back and he told me that the flat roof is sound but the leak is coming from another part of the roof and he doesn’t repair that type of roof. He recommended a roofer who told me the leak coming from next door. I have since got 2 roofers to come in and they say its the flat roof and it is bowed and holding water and that is why it is leaking. Yes he has re-felted the roof but he should have given it a slope so that the water run off.

  • Julia 24 January, 7:00 pm

    Hi, just wondered if you have had your situation resolved and what advice you might have as I am in a similar situation.

    Would appreciate any information you can give.



  • Patsy Slew 17 February, 2:16 pm

    I had some windows fitted in January 2012 and before Christmas I noticed the sealer was going mouldy and there seemed to be a small amount of water coming through. The windows weren’t finished in a tidy way at all but I just thought that’s what happened when new windows were fitted. The company came out and put more sealer on but said it wasn’t their problem. Even when I tried to explain that water was coming through they said there wasn’t any coming through. The guy then put some sealer on top of the moult sealer which wasn’t even damp proof. I called later that day to say it hadn’t dried and they told me it wasn’t their problem. the sealer is now going green? Can I take this to some sort of trades body? I have a warranty but they don’t seem to think it’s their problem

  • margaret 5 August, 2:02 am

    i had a fire in my kitchen a neighbour recommended this builder to me . he gave me a quote of 23thousand , i payed him cash at 5000 each time, to cut my story short he left the job unfinished and most of the work he done is not a good job i had to get another plummer to sort a leak etc where do i go from here or can he just get away with this

  • nne gray 11 August, 3:40 pm

    hi paid a registered plumber to replace my shower,he then employed someone else to help him.My shower leaks the joinerey work is shoddy and he has not come back as he said he would …have i any rights?

  • John Spick 10 October, 3:03 pm

    My fitter who was supplied by the bathroom company but paid separately has finished the work . It’s a mess and has been put right by the bathroom company using a different fitter at there cost. I have paid the original fitters £2000 leaving a balance of £900. They are now asking for this money and I really do not feel inclined to pay them for various reasons could anyone tell me the legal possition thanks

  • Alex 16 October, 10:41 pm

    We asked for a new coservatory they said 3 days it’s been 4 weeks all sorts of problems including old seconds bad gutters and wrong fittings paid half what do I do now ? Help please

  • Bernard French 2 December, 1:36 pm

    Hi Builders have not pointed my new extension there are many bricks without any or not much cement in right down the wall where extension is jointed there are no cement or very little you can almost see inside cavity wall my kitchen is damp and when we had violent rain storm kitchen had some flooding so the rain is penetrating into cavity what should I now do I have taken photos and also I believe there is just two layers of torch on roofing felt and I have been advised there should have been three the roof is shoddy work and there is no rapid drip former at all rain just runs down wall and they left a whole brick and maybe half out of boundary wall

  • christine norris 3 January, 2:26 pm

    I received and accepted a quote to have 10 solar panels total 2.5 kw supplied and fitted but the company only installed 8 panels total 2kw. I have ringing the company for weeks asking for a refund for the panels I did not receive but getting no where they keep saying will pass it to relevant person to deal with but no one ever gets back to me. I feel they think if they ignore me I will get fed up and forget it. What are my options

  • Jo Ellicker 9 February, 10:47 am

    We have been having a loft conversion done by a family run business. Had a contract signed and arrange payment instalments . Verbally agreed it would take 3/4weeks plus a week given unforeseen circumstances. It’s now into its 4month!!! The builder claimed he was ill a couple of weeks into the build ! We pay the first instalment and he came for the first few days, then we didn’t see them for a couple of days or hear from them , this is when he took poorly he says. He came back a few days did some work took the next instalment then we didn’t see or hear again for a couple of days , this was apparently because the staircase manufacture was late building stairs and the windows were wrong so he was waiting for them. 2weeks later after Xmas only one came back and did work , he’s been here on and off for weeks! Half doing jobs ! We have photos of things they have patched together and hidden thinking we wouldn’t notice. Roof started leaking so we contacted them but they wouldn’t come for days! They came said its mended but leaking again along with the toilet they fitted (which he said just put a dish under it) … It’s still not finished and we have had building control round and now given them 14days notice with a letter from citizens advice . Only I really need the roof leaking what do I do?

  • Jo Ellicker 9 February, 11:25 am

    We have been having a loft conversion done by a family run business. Had a contract signed and arrange payment instalments . Verbally agreed it would take 3/4weeks plus a week given unforeseen circumstances. It’s now into its 4month!!! The builder claimed he was ill a couple of weeks into the build ! We pay the first instalment and he came for the first few days, then we didn’t see them for a couple of days or hear from them , this is when he took poorly he says. He came back a few days did some work took the next instalment then we didn’t see or hear again for a couple of days , this was apparently because the staircase manufacture was late building stairs and the windows were wrong so he was waiting for them. 2weeks later after Xmas only one came back and did work , he’s been here on and off for weeks! Half doing jobs ! We have photos of things they have patched together and hidden thinking we wouldn’t notice. Roof started leaking so we contacted them but they wouldn’t come for days! They came said its mended but leaking again along with the toilet they fitted (which he said just put a dish under it) … It’s still not finished and we have had building control round and now given them 14days notice with a letter from citizens advice . Only I really need the roof that’s leaking sorted, what do I do?

  • Lee Thomas 14 February, 12:15 pm

    Carpet fitters fitted carpet to three rooms in my home and the standard of workmanship was unacceptable. They also damaged my property in the process. We agreed that I should withhold part of the payment until all faults were rectified and damage fixed. Everything about their service was below what you would expect from a good professional service. They made 5 appointments to make said rectifications but failed to show, often without any call to apologise. It’s now been 3 months since initial fit. I’ve lost faith but they are requesting the final payment through a solicitor/ debt collector. What are my options?

  • John Parker 17 February, 7:30 pm

    I have had a conservatory fitted within a year cracks started to appear. I pay monthly for this. When I asked for the management of the company to check it out. he sent his eman out to do repairs. They tried to bodge all the work. Could I stop the payments until the work is done.

  • Richard 19 March, 8:58 pm

    Just got builders in to fit bathroom suite to stud walls tiles ect had a lot of problems with the tilling being so bad that’s I’ve asked them to fix the problems then after they tryed to fix these problems , seen a lot more so got them back out why I told them to pack up and go before they make more mess I’ve took a lot of pictures of the mess they made just in case ? Where do I stand with pay them as I going to have to get someone else’s to fix these problems

  • D Wright 17 April, 8:28 pm

    What is my legal position when I have employed an architect who gave me a choice of two
    builders to carry out extensive work on my house.The builder has taken 37k out of a 41k+
    vat fixed price. He has walked out leaving me with sub-standard work and an estimated 15k
    to rectify and complete the work.

  • Donna Hodge 26 July, 12:19 pm

    we had a conservatory built 18 months ago. Upon completion we weren’t completely happy and had to get a couple of doors and frames sanded down independently and when we emailed the company to express our concerns they told us they could have charged a lot more but didn’t and began to get funny with us. We paid in full and that was it. Things then started to go wrong. One of the internal fascia boards became loose because of the heat it had expanded and after a while and a few attempts of emailing them (apparently my emails were going to spam) I even wrote to them, they came and sorted it out. This was only a few months after it had finished. This year we noticed that the seal on one of the roof vents on the outside had become loose so again I emailed them from a different address as did my husband and after numerous attempts to contact them they responded and sent someone around to fix. Now with the same window we have a leak and have to place a bucket under the area! I’ve emailed them again this weekend but it’s totally unacceptable I need to now know where we stand?!

  • ann sylvester 17 January, 7:32 pm

    Our conservatory is still not finished after nearly 8 months (the first 4 months taken for planning permission). I have used a company recommended by very plausible friends and somehow the owner has chosen to ignore us at every occasion. My 85 year old mum is very upset and I don’t know where to turn. I have paid the majority of the cost but still owe £2000. What else can I do to move it on?

  • Marie 27 March, 6:53 am

    Hi can you tell me if I am breaking the law for not paying for the double glazing put into my house. The guy was hopeless at organising times to meet to agree what windows and spek I wanted.I was supposed to sign a contract which never came and he was supposed to come round to my home to discuss finalities for the job. None of this happened so I had to chase him to see what was going on. When I got hold of him he said that windows were already ordered, I said but there were still specks which I wanted like having window locks meaning that if windowcwas left open a couple inches that it would not be able to be opened any further from the outside. The guy told me not to worry that it could be sorted after fitting. When they eventually did turn up they just started the job of ripping out windows not bothering to show me product. I asked if I could see the windows, I lived the frames but was horrified to see that the glazing was wrong. The guys called the boss who said company who made them got the order wrong and not him I had to agree to them going in as old windows were already taken out. The boss said no worries glazing could be changed if I didn’t like them and he said that he would give me to end if month to make my mind up. Because of this the glazing was not fitted tightly incase I wanted them changed which left me with draughty noisy windows. I called the boss told him I wasn’t happy, he came out supposedly fixed the problem but I’m still getting draughts and noise and there is considerable amount of noise with one frame which heaves and groans, creaks and whistles with the wind. I have asked boss to come and sort these problems he just chuckles on the phone when I speak with him saying to me he has fitted them right and that they should not be making any noise etc. This whole job has given me stress to the point of making me I’ll. The windows were fitted 3 months ago and he has not been back to sort problems. I no longer want him in my house as I no longer trust what he says it does. The only reason I went with him for the job was that he fitted two external sets if French doors and an external front door to my property ten years ago which I have been happy with although he was still unreliable at showing when he said he would then. I have not had a bill yet and do not intend on paying for reasons above, can you tell me if I am within my rights? I have not signed a contract as he never showed with one when he said he’d come round with it before he started the job. And he has put beading around all windows inside leading me to believe there are unfilled gaos as the windows are really cold to touch and draughty in places. Your advice will be much appreciated, thank you in advance, Marie.

  • Melanie 30 March, 1:55 pm

    Our builder gave us a verbal quote to knock 2 bathrooms into one the quote was between £2000-£3000, he was not given a time scale but was told it should be finished by the time my Son returned from sea. I purchased the shower, the WC, the sink, the tiles and grouting, and the towel rails. the only thing agreed as extra was the 6 lights and the waste outlet pipe for the old bath. My Son was due home and the bathroom was still no where near finished. after 5 weeks the sink and WC only worked for the last night. After 5 weeks i said thats enough, if you don’t finish today thats it. he submitted his bill of £5934.08 i have paid £3,245 I have had to pay another builder over £600 to complete the job, will have to pay a carpenter to finish the bathroom door, and will also have to pay another builder over £600 to repair the ceiling the builder put his foot through. i think i have paid what i think the job is worth . he has been our builder for years and looked after my elderly mother in laws house and done her garden and we have been pleased with him. he is now threatening me with court.

  • mel 11 April, 6:52 pm

    We had builders who laid paving in such a way that we couldn’t open our garrage. Now the builders have fixed it but are charging £250. Do we need to pay it or should they do it for free as it was their fault?

  • Amanda allsopp 20 June, 10:42 am

    I scheduled a bathroom to b renovated while we were on holiday to avoid inconvenience returned he to a mess the job should hav taken at the most 8/9 days n were now on our 16 th day with only a handheld shower n complete mess my grandkids live with me so its a nightmare no hand basin still the old toilet in and no bathroom door on theyve made a mess off my hall carpet and made various excuses am i entitled to wirhhold full ammoynt n take some money off for inconvenience on completion?? Thankyou

  • Deborah Preston 20 August, 6:44 pm

    Last year i bought some blinds from AAA blinds and i was pleased with the service. Later this year i decided to use them again. I ordered 4 sets of blinds costing £360 i gave the money upfront as i had no reason to think i wouldn’t get my blinds. It has been over 2 1/2 months i have sent text and and rang them he has always said they will be fitted next week. I would like to know how to reclaim my money back.

  • Mason 26 October, 5:22 pm

    We employed a guy to refit the bathroom. He subcontracted another guy to do the tiler which is a disaster, with large grout in areas he cut the tiles short on. We purchased all the products and a special board to be put on the floor to have a level tiling areas. He never prepared the sub floor and the floor is uneven and he has put bits of wood under our sink unit as it would rock as floor is so unlvel.

    He has been very intimidating to any other trades people that have come to the house with a lot of inappropriate comments and we do not feel comfortable having him back to make good the shoddy workmanship for these reasons.

    We have not paid him yet but are we in a position to offer him a price for the work we feel was carried out to an acceptable standard and get the work then done by someone we trust, reducing his original quote to cover the new costs.

  • Amber 10 November, 3:16 pm


    Looking for a bit of advice here.
    I employed a company to lay some boarding on top of my floorboards to have new flooring put on top.
    we agreed that we would employ them for £130 per day(day rate) for 2 people to do the job. Well, on the first day one man came all day and one man only stayed for 3 hours but i still paid the £130, the next day only one man showed up for the entire day, so i halved the £130 and paid only half as only 1 person showed up and it was agreed that 2 people would come for the £130 they also said onces the boarding is finished if i had any other jobs then this could be done in the day as i was paying a day rate.

    Well the company then started sending me threats that if i did not pay the rest of the money they would charge me a late payment fee, they also said they would be charging me for the extra jobs done which was putting up a shelf and painting my ceiling of one room. Because i refused to pay they then said they would be charging court costs, however they then decided that instead of court costs to chase the payment, they messaged me saying they would then dump rubbish/asbestos from other peoples houses that they clear into my garden as it costs them to dump the rubbish/asbestos properly so they would be gaining the money i owe them back because they would save the money by dumping the rubbish into my garden.

    Well the police are now involved and i have proceeded to contact trading standards, well today i have had people come to lay my flooring and they have now told me that all of the boarding layed is Upside down, which means that it would all be cut wrong around doors etc.

    I am wondering what i can do about all of this as i have been receiving harassment from the company to pay up money that i feel i do not owe and now i find out the work is done completely wrong too. (On the first day the man that came for 3 hours also did his work completely wrong and he is the one that owns the company!)

    Help and Advice would be appreciated!

  • Cindy 6 December, 4:22 pm

    I called a plumber who said they would charge 180-224 depending on size, told him bathroom not draining, he came out and promptly said he could give me a great deal with this big snake usually costing 600, but he would only charge me 400, I said no way, because it was cold out that day he said he had to call office and see if he could do this with their approval for less , found out later he was owner, it didnt work, so he came in house and said it would cost additional 50 to lift toilet and reseal it after snaking, after all this told him tub still not draining, he said run hot water and it will loosen up, paid him 274, next day had to call him because tub not draining, he said now it would be an emergency call and would have to charge me more???? told him he didnt fix it in beginning, said the soonest he could come out would be on Fri (after Thanksgiving) and he would do it free and said I was trying to take advantage of small business, I told him he was taking advantage of me, well I stopped pmt on check and never heard from him until 2 weeks after because check was stopped, do I owe him money? He said he was taking me to court
    I dont feel I owe him anything he didnt fix the problem

  • J Wright 28 December, 5:47 pm

    I had a company install 2 new windows – which were fine. I also had them install new fascias, soffits and guttering. I have since had them back on 6 occasions because the water is not flowing through the guttering and leaking at the brackets. They had said they can’t understand why this is happening and are now ignoring my request for them to fix things. Can I get another company to fix the problem and then claim redress from the original company?

  • Gemma 12 January, 6:53 am

    I am having a conservatory built
    I wanted it the same size as my decking when the sales man came he stood at the end of the decking and stood at the end of the decking pointing his laser tape measure at the wall he told me that’s 3.5 m so I said ok.
    When the builders have come they have placed the foundations and it seems much smaller than I first thought so now I have asked them to stop all work. The firms solisitor rang me and said they will only charge me £600 for making it bigger and not the £1200 that it should be. But in my eyes I am having to pay for something that I thought I had already agreed upon! If I take this to court would I get anywhere ? They say the space I want is 4 m and not 3.5 m .
    Thanks Gemma

  • Chris Gollop 24 January, 7:02 pm

    Have a blind fitted 4 years ago my grand daughter put cord round her neck so we called the company who fitted to come round to fit safety catches on blind.
    Well he has broke my blind he has tried to repair but it’s not worked. I say he should replace blind as he broke it and he said no way.

    How do I stand please

  • Laura 16 February, 10:40 am

    We are in dispute with a customer which is now at small claims stage.
    We have recieved her documents she intends to rely on in court.
    We entered a verbal contract with her to landscape her garden.. However on day od completion she advised she was not happy with height of garden and wanted it lowered.
    Long story short. She advised us she would get an independant Inspection report done however it turns out he was just another tradesman who then ‘rectified’ the work for her.
    Can we dispute this in court as he could have made up half the stuff for finanical gain. Also he isnt classed as independant as he completed works and also doesnt state his experience or background in his report.
    Any advice would be great.
    Thank you

  • Pixie 1 March, 1:57 pm

    Hi I need some advice as I have no idea what to do – had a tile job done and its not great, have had two independent tillers round to see the work and both are very unimpressed, I have photographs, grout bubbling, colour of grout all different shades, cracked tile and to top it off tiles laid in an extremely strange uninform way in areas of kitchen…..we have tried to resolve it with tile but he cant see what’s wrong – yet he has come back with a discount (but its not enough) we sent him a break down of what we were happy to pay which was very reasonable in my opinion as I COULD have said I was paying nothing. we paid a lot of money to have him do the job and his work mate who has been working with him for 6 months was there doing a lot of the work while he swanned off to other jobs. so never got the experienced tile we paid for. What can we do? We haven’t paid him anything yet, we bought all the tiles – which about 10 sq m will need dug up and replaced. We also aren’t happy with the grout and he has said it could have been caused by the cold (tiles aren’t supposed to be laid under 5 degrees and it was and he still laid them) Please please help!

  • Renee 16 March, 6:44 pm

    I dismissed my contractor for a number of reasons. I haven’t paid any deposit to them but the work was quited at £2.5k to refurbish a kitchen over 8 days.
    They started work without the plans and fitted the kitchen incorrectly, damaging units the the process. We got them to re-fit and the base units were 10cms over standard height. They blamed the kitchen designer and cut down the units unevenly. They are also in the wrong position. They refused to do lots of the work we wanted and told us not to point out problems.
    I discovered that they’ve installed a gas hob and electrics without certifications. Have reported them to the Gas Safe Register. When I told him to go he refused to leave. Finally he said he would only leave if I text him to say nothing had been stolen.
    They’ve scratched and damaged goods installing them and now I’m hiring new people to finish the jobs and put things right. They were 4 days over the 8 quoted when I told them to go.
    I quoted Consumer Rights 2015 in an email to them and have receipts and photos. I bought all good except for grouting and some underlay. Do I have to pay them anything? If so, how much? If not, how do I tell them that?