Builder overcharging?

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i feel sorry for tradesmen who have to work for certain types of people, if a customer asks how long a job should take it doesnt mean they should be held to it. i can fit a conservatory in a day with my partner but we wouldnt do it on day rate, you get what you pay for most of the time
 
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I once paid a pay to view fee to watch a Ricky Hatton fight. It cost about £15 quid - I had been listening to the build up of the fight on Radio 5 Live and thought I just couldn't miss watching. As it happened, Hatton was knocked down and counted out in the FIRST ROUND!!!!!!!!! Boy, did I feel that I had been ripped off! However, I did not expect a refund from Sky or, come to that, Hatton. I paid for something, did not get what I was hoping for but cannot argue that I had entered into a fair contract. If the option was to pay at the end of the fight I do not think I would have any legal grounds for refusing to pay.

With regards to garages I envy the fact that if you do not pay them they have your car and it remains theirs until you pay. If only trades had that kind of leverage.

Edit: but cannot argue that I had NOT entered into a fair contract
 
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i feel sorry for tradesmen who have to work for certain types of people, if a customer asks how long a job should take it doesnt mean they should be held to it. i can fit a conservatory in a day with my partner but we wouldnt do it on day rate, you get what you pay for most of the time

Tradesmen can pick and choose for whom they want to work. And the guys who like to overcharge customers will know too well whom to target, for example elderly people as in Pippy's case.
 
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With regards to garages I envy the fact that if you do not pay them they have your car and it remains theirs until you pay. If only trades had that kind of leverage.

Tradesmen could easily avoid non-payment by setting up a proper contract between themselves and the customers. This of course requires effort, diligence and responsibility.

They will have good reasons why instead they rely on casual agreements and cash in hand after the job's finished.
 
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Would appreciate some advice on the following.

My mum is 75 years old and needed some repair work doing to a garden wall. She has had problems in the past trying to get builders around to quote for small jobs because they don't seem to want to know. A friend of hers recommended someone so she got him around to give her a quote (verbal estimate). He told her the job would entail putting in some new blocks, shouldn't take anymore than a day and wouldn't cost anymore than £200. She felt this was reasonable so gave him the go ahead.

He did the job, took about three and a half hours and didn't use any blocks, she thought he was going to be here for the whole day. She got the bill and it said, "Labour only £200". We rang the guy and told him we thought his bill was a bit steep for the amount of work that had been done. He originally quoted £200, but took much less time and used less material than he thought. When asked why the bill was still £200, the guy said that there were two extra hours for ringing around to get materials (he's a builder, ringing around to get sand and cement?) and that he had to pay to get rid of the rubbish. We said that all these costs would already have been accounted for in the original estimate. We asked for an itemised bill.

The itemised bill has labour at £100 and materials and expenses at £100. He has charged us £20 for getting rid of rubbish (a bag or two which would have cost us £2 at the local tip but we weren't given that option); he has charged us for diesel on top of this; he seems to have marked up the cost of sand by 150%!!; charged us £13.50 for Feb Mix of which he will only have used a capful; and other things besides.

He is quite clearly ripping my mum off. What we need to know is, is my mum obliged to pay the bill because she accepted his verbal estimate (even though the job was much less than he thought and he is quite clearly overcharging on the materials)? We were thinking we would pay him £150 because that seems more reasonable.
Hi Pip, Ask to see his waste transfer licience, for the rubbish he says he took away. If he has not got one or cannot produce a bonifide document from an authorised waste remover then knock that off the bill.
 
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He is quite clearly ripping my mum off. What we need to know is, is my mum obliged to pay the bill because she accepted his verbal estimate (even though the job was much less than he thought and he is quite clearly overcharging on the materials)? We were thinking we would pay him £150 because that seems more reasonable.


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I can't believe this is still going on!

If you have no issues with the actual work, then pay the man. He is likely to have a family to feed and a mortgage to pay.

Alternatively, get a solicitor to write him a letter. Then reconsider the definition of "overcharging".........................
 
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