More problems with builder, threats and demands

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  • More problems with builder, threats and demands
  • bencooper
    Member

    If they step onto your property, call the police. Simple. If they think they are owed money, then they should proceed through the courts and a judge can decide.

    Junkyard
    Member

    Dont pay and they cannot rip the roof off as it leaves your property insecure
    they have to use legal redress for this situation and cannot force you to sign a contract after the event
    Do not under any circumstances sign this and the courts will take a very dim view on them turning up at your property and committing an assault if they get that far.

    Do you have the original quote in writing from them or evidence of said quote?

    I would simply explain you dont have that amount of money and haggle

    If they have any sense they will realise the best way of sorting this is with your agreement as a court case will take some time for them to get their money

    Personally I would not be getting myself into debt to pay a bill in excess of what was agreed
    Make an offer in writng agreeing to pay the agreed costs and nothing more
    Explain that this was the agreed deal and the agreed price and that they cannot just demand more from you and to stop coming to your property to demand more money.
    If they disagree tell them to take you to court

    z1ppy
    Member

    I have a friend who got into this position, & paid. Do not do this, he still had to pay a 2nd builder to fix issues afterwards.

    There’s info out there (I’ve not read this but there must be useful advise amoungst it):
    http://www.policyexpert.co.uk/how-to-deal-with-cowboy-builders/
    http://www.consumerrightsexpert.co.uk/dealing-with-cowboy-builders.html

    I’m sure there was a thread before about stuff like this.

    A rubbish position to be in, really sorry to hear it, and unfortunately most of the advise is tailored to avoiding them in the first place, but do not back down. Fear and intimidation is just a tool to them, maybe try contacting that cowboy builder program, for advice if nothing else?
    http://www.channel5.com/shows/cowboy-builders/features/need-us-to-investigate

    ruffride
    Member

    There not gona rip your roof of did you ever have a written quote or sign anything if not the they have nothing no proof of what they have done so just give them a cheq for what you agreed an day they should be happy dont give cash as there’s no trace

    tony24
    Member

    Why has the cost suddenly changed so much from there original quote? do you have the agreed price on paper? Have you paid the balance already before completion?

    edward2000
    Member

    Ruffride, have you heard of punctuation?

    grum
    Member

    If they were threatening and aggressive – call the police.

    And as above, pay what was originally agreed by cheque and not a penny more, and tell them they’ll have to take you to court if they want anything else.

    Thanks for the support, I really need it at the moment.

    We had a quote for a 9×3 building, the quote was good so we spoke about increrasing it by about a third to 11×3, he gave a verbal quote that we were happy with, we expected it to increase by about a 3rd on the original qoute but it has more than doubled. Problem is he was recommended by my neighbour, his mother, so we stupidly thought he would be ok.

    We sent him a long letter about disputing the final costs as half way through we agreed a figure and that has now increased, we also asked for various other things such as breakdown of costs etc and we’ve just had a hand written piece of paper with some costs on it, not detailed or responding to our dispute over costs.

    We have tried to negotiate with him but he won’t he just insists on having his money, he told us to sell the car, mortgage the house, get my money!

    Again, thanks for some support, more please, feels like I’m getting more help and advice here than with the authorities, I need to start to feel positive and that I’m doing the right thing, I’m going out to walk the dog for a few hours as it’s driving me crazy sitting stewing on it.

    rogerthecat
    Member

    As has been said ^^^ get all the paperwork together, log every call/conversation. If you can record it then do so and tell them that’s what you are doing but try and insist on written communication. Get advice asap from one of the links above, they will have dealt with this type of thing before. Been there, it’s a shitty place to be and I feel for you. Also, if they say they are coming round do not, under any circumstances, meet them on your own, make sure that you have witnesses. If they try to remove the roof IIRC it would be trespass with criminal damage but check that and if it is you may want to let them know that you are aware. Good luck and keep us posted.

    soops
    Member

    edward2000 – what has punctuation got to do with this thread? It is about cowboy builders not punctuation!

    soops
    Member

    Do not pay them!

    Frankers
    Member

    edward2000 – Member
    Ruffride, have you heard of punctuation?

    Child !!!

    This is really getting crazy now.

    We are now getting more threats and demands from our builder and his brother, I had both of them on my property yesterday demanding I pay their costs, their costs were not agreed and we are disputing what they are asking, the final figure is a bit excessive but it’s just the way he got to it, we were given one cost and we agreed, then another and we agreed and then at the last minute it went up again, we have tried to explain this to them but they don’t listen, they don’t seem to take it in and just keep demanding money. the thing is if we knew what it was going to end up costing before he started we wouldn’t have had it done as we don’t have the money, he knew we had a budget. His brother said he was going to write a contract bring it to me Sunday morning and they expect me to sign it and pay within 7 days and if we don’t they are going to rip the roof off, they were quite threatening and aggressive. This whole situation has us feeling paralised at the moment. We have reported everything to the police, trading standards and even building control at my local council but no one can do anything, we feel so alone in dealing with this. We feel we may just have to pay in the end to get rid of them, we’ll have to try and borrow the money and be in debt for a while which won’t be easy as we’re not working at the moment but start new jobs in September so it’ll take a while to get back on our feet. We are going to sell and move once this is sorted out, it just doesn’t feel right living here anymore.

    Dunno why I’m writing this really, just feel like getting it out of my system, I know there’s nothing anyone can do to help 🙁

    Premier Icon jamj1974
    Subscriber

    Call the police. You have agree a price and then they are trying to extort more money above the price without agreement. They cannot take your roof off or remove any part of your property. Trespass is illegal – so if they enter your property without a warrant or permission they are breaking the law.

    badnewz
    Member

    Some great advice here.

    Sorry to hear about it all – i hope the saga comes to an end soon as it sounds like a nightmare.

    Premier Icon sparksmcguff
    Subscriber

    Perhaps a quote from a second builder as a means of agreeing a reasonable cost for the work done. Also if costs have escaletted beyond the original understanding I would want to see evidence (receipts and logs of man hours – eg diaries etc). I contract building work frequently and understand that smaller operations can find cash flow very challenging. However, I think that a sense of what is proportional and reasonable to both parties needs to be reached without threats.

    Call the police if he sets foot on your property without an invitation. Communicate in writing.

    andyl
    Member

    Either a quote from a decent builder (explain the situation and offer to pay for their time) or, which I think will be more official, get a surveyor (go here http://www.rics.org/uk/ ) and pay for a proper cost breakdown and also get the work checked as chances are they may well have cut corners too. On the last point alone it will be worth it.

    You should have legal cover on your home insurance so make use of that too.

    boblo
    Member

    I’d arrange to meet him ‘to discuss’ then get the Police round at the same time. Ring them and say its gonna kick off/GBH/stabbing etc and they’ll attend.

    Once he gets the message intimidation and threats don’t work, you’ll be able to sort the commercials sensibly.

    Premier Icon paladin
    Subscriber

    Was it a quote or an estimate he gave you? Estimates are subject to change. When I got an extension built, most of the trades gave estimates. He can’t take the building apart though, nor can he withold certificates.

    crankboy
    Member

    It would be worth paying a surveyor / builder to asess the work and give a valuation and point out any defects and quote to rectify. Use that to decide what you actually owe. Write to him a) that is what you will pay by cheque on receipt of all certificates and guarantees. B) all future communication to be in writing c) any further threats any further personal visits and any attemp to cause damage to your home will be reported to the police and all so be pursued through the civil courts for financial compensation.

    TuckerUK
    Member

    Make sure you record (video and/or audio) all future dealings with them if you haven’t already. Remember to ask “Are you threatening me?”

    Edit: As someone cleverly pointed out on a cycling cam/accident thread, the fact your video is running also reminds you not to say or do anything that will reflect badly on you.

    spacemonkey
    Member

    I’d arrange to meet him ‘to discuss’ then get the Police round at the same time. Ring them and say its gonna kick off/GBH/stabbing etc and they’ll attend.

    I wouldn’t bet on that. 5 years ago I called the police to say I knew a bloke who was going home to beat up his girlfriend. “Sorry, we don’t have enough resource tonight. Can’t do anything.” was their response. Sure enough, the bloke turned up and attacked her with a set of keys.

    boblo
    Member

    Ok, tell them you’ve seen a gun. They’ll be round PDQ.

    hitman
    Member

    Do not pay – they’re bullying you.
    I’ve had similar in the past, stood my ground and the so-called “tradesman” didn’t get the extra money he was demanding.
    Next time call the police and keep calling them every time they visit – tell them you fear for your safety and your family’s safety.
    Good luck.

    project
    Member

    Just perhaps Mr Builder has done extra work ,bought extra materials and his account at the timber yard builders merchant is now due for payment, just sometimes customers forget what thyve agree to especially when a higher price is quoted.

    Its nothing to do with building control, unless the work is sub standard and doesnt conform to building standards etc, same with the police, they may only atend if they believe there may be a breach of the peace and resourses allow.

    Go to mediation and pay him some money due, to keep him still solvent.

    Juast imagine you went to work your boss asked you to do extra work, and buy some stuff for work using your money you said i want paying for it , he agrees verbally, time to get paid you dont get paid extra, you go round and demand your boss pays you the money as you have bills to pay.

    Works both ways.

    Premier Icon franksinatra
    Subscriber

    Ruffride, have you heard of punctuation?

    Not cool. Neither the right time nor place.

    pjm84
    Member

    Sticks head above parapet. I agree with Project. There’s always two sides. Find the happy ground.

    project
    Member

    There’s always two sides

    3 sides their side the builders side and the TRUTH, sometimes the sum of the 3 doesnt add up/

    Jamie
    Member

    Not cool. Neither the right time nor place.

    Why? It’s not like someone has died.

    iolo
    Member

    Not knowing all the ins and outs Project does have a point.

    ScottChegg
    Member

    Ok, tell them you’ve seen a gun

    That’s the best way to instantly get Plod not on your side. Don’t be daft

    I’ve just got back from being out for a while, nice to meet and talk to normal people without feeling stressed or threatened although I can’t stop feeling anxious.

    I’ve been recording our conversations since it all kicked off about a month ago, I’ve got a solicitor and he helped me to put together the first letter and I’ve just had a Quantity Surveyor do a site visit to write up a report. I informed the builder of all this, I think that’s why they decided to get heavy and get the brother involved. I did state in the letter that I wanted in writing what was need to complete, total cost and that we would have to agree on this before proceeding and that I would require it to be fully signed off and all guarantees, but they don’t seem to have understood this, I tried to explain this to him a few days ago and he basically said ‘f*** the letter, it doesn’t mean anything’, so I’m kind of banging my head against a brick wall here trying to deal with him.

    I’ve tried to negotiate with him to meet in the middle, but he won’t have it, accordingly to the quick summary email I had from the QS he should have made a profit on what he has done and money he has had so far, so either he’s being stitched up on 3rd party work or he’s not getting trade rates for materials? As in my previous threads/posts I can only assume he’s grossly underestimated the work, we’ve already agreed a higher price but he’s upped that again and I don’t feel that this is my problem, if we had known the final cost we wouldn’t have had the work done and he’s admitted thst he ‘doesn’t know what the cost will be until it’s finished’ which just suggests he doesn’t really have a clue, and so he makes my and my partners life a misery.

    project
    Member

    So theyre going to come round at a pre arranged time and date 7 days, and take back the materials they have paid for and you refuse to pay them for, they will then loose out all the pay for the job they have done, along with possible damage to the materials,which they may be able to reuse.

    Like ive said in previous posts never work on big jobs for neighbours as when the time comes for payment and you as a builder/contractor might mention youre going on holiday, anywhere,the customer will think we cant afford a holiday, we are paying for you holiday, and sometimes get funny over the standard of work, payment, cost etc etc, seen it happen.
    Oh and youve still got to function as neighbours, and other neighbours will take sides, a not nice situation develops.

    I’ve already paid for all the materials, they’ve had a large chunk of my money already, at no point did he say about extra costs as he was doing the work or keep me informed, I didn’t agree to their final cost which they informed me of at about 7pm on a Friday when they were suppose to finish the job, then proceeded to shout, swear, threaten and demand payment there and then, they are providing me with no paperwork or receipts, failing to co-operate or answer simple questions. Threatening to pull down my building, getting in my face, acting aggressively, swearing and shouting at me and my family, demanding the full payment before the work is complete … is hardly the way a decent honest professional trader operates, is it?

    jamesy01
    Member

    Was the initial quote between £1,000 to £1,200/m2?
    Did the quote include VAT?

    Mr_Mojo
    Member

    Was the initial quote between £1,000 to £1,200/m2?

    If the builder has only built the structure I certainly hope it’s nowhere near £1k to £1.2k per m2.

    crankboy
    Member

    Speak to your solicitor again . Do not speak to the builder other than to say go away all future communication is to be in writing and suggest he send you a full itemised account of all work done and materials. If this is the scenario project suggests above he should have no problem providing a written explanation of what is owed .

    project
    Member

    and ask the solicitor for a full breakdown of all costs incured ,phone calls leters etc.

    equal footing and all that .

    Jamie
    Member

    equal footing and all that .

    Footings are extra. Double if you want them equal.

    He’s only built the structure, brick and block, no electric, plumbing, plastering or finishing and he’s asking approx. £950 sq/m, but this wasn’t this figure on the original quote, this was approx. £480 sq/m, which I now know to be grossly underpriced, I totally relied upon his quote and judement on prices, I had no idea, I’m not a builder so thought he knew what he was doing? Maybe that’s how he gets work, underquote then keep adding extras and wallop you get a massive bill at the end? We did agree on a new cost, this is the problem as he has put that new cost up again by £5000

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