Builder threatening us

Joined
21 Oct 2014
Messages
18
Reaction score
0
Location
Surrey
Country
United Kingdom
We are currently in dispute with a builder.

We hired a builder to fit out kitchen which he estimated would cost about £800. They worked at the kitchen for 2 days, saying it will take them 3 days but within the 2 days we found serious faults with their work.

1. They ranged from completely boxing in our boiler so that there was no ventilation
2. To not installing the end panels to wonky and he refused to tile until right below the bottom of the wall units.
3. Also they cut up our end panels to produce boxing, which was not agreed, they were going to buy extra material for the boxing.
4. None of the wall units were level; and work surfaces were slanting.
5. They cut in the sink badly so that on one edge there is a 3 cm gap and on the other a 2 cm gap to the worktop.
5. Cupboard doors did not open and close, and they ruined the inside of some of the units by drilling multiple holes because obviously they did not know what they were doing.

We got second opinions from 2 builders and have collected a 24 points of mistake lists. So we decided not to ask the builders to return and hire another builder to set it right. We had to spend about £350 replacing the damaged materials and another £1500 to pay another builder to remove the kitchen units and then refit them. Also knock off the tiles and retile.

We have sent the builder a letter outlining the defect with pictures and told him that due to the large number or errors we lost confidence that he would complete the job with enough diligence and to a reasonable standard. We had paid him £560. We also paid all his material cost. He claims that there are £240 outstanding, and he wants to come back and complete the work.

We told we do not want him to come back for the outstanding work; as the work was not good enough and we do not want him to damage any materials further. He threatened my husband and told us he is going to come round and smash up our kitchen with a hammer.
He claims that it is his right to either get paid, or come and finish the job. We do not want to let him back into the house after he has threatened physical violence.

He started sending me threatening text messages such as “call me or find yourself a new kitchen” which I decided not to ignore.

We sent him another letter telling him again that we do not want him to return to work because he had damaged so many of our materials and we do not trust that he has the skill to finish the job to a high enough standard. I also told him that now he is threatening us with breaking into our house and smashing up our kitchen , we no longer feel safe with him in our property, and if he trespasses we will call the police. If he wants to claim the rest of the money he should take us to court.

It’s not about the amount of money, I think its more about the principle. How can he expect to be paid in full for a job that was done badly, he has not finished and had to be completely redone. Also these threats are awful; and I do not think that somebody should threaten someone like this and think you can still get paid? We tried to talk to him reasonably but he just shouts at us and threatens us.

Even though I am determined to stand up to this builder, I find the situation quite stressful; as you do not know how crazy some people can be.

Does anybody have any further advice?
 
Sponsored Links
E

EddieM

Some burly guys to kick 9 shades outta him, sounds like a right ..... bleep! Seriously though, inform the police you are being threatened, they may go round and have a word.
 
Joined
7 Feb 2010
Messages
2,975
Reaction score
328
Country
United Kingdom
Some burly guys to kick 9 shades outta him, sounds like a right ..... bleep! Seriously though, inform the police you are being threatened, they may go round and have a word.

Quite. When I started reading this post, I started thinking of civil remedies, but given the threats I'd say this is now a matter for the police. Show them the threatening texts.

Cheers
Richard
 
Joined
21 Oct 2014
Messages
18
Reaction score
0
Location
Surrey
Country
United Kingdom
When he threatened us verbally I called up the police and gave them the builders name and address and they recorded an incident, but they said they cannot do anything while its just a threat. They told me that if he turns up at our house to call 999. But then it may be a little to late?
 
Sponsored Links
Joined
7 Feb 2010
Messages
2,975
Reaction score
328
Country
United Kingdom
When he threatened us verbally I called up the police and gave them the builders name and address and they recorded an incident, but they said they cannot do anything while its just a threat. They told me that if he turns up at our house to call 999. But then it may be a little to late?

Show them the offending texts, tell them this has happened on more than one occasion, and that they should take some kind of action under the Harrassment Act 1997:

"A person must not pursue a course of conduct— .

(a)which amounts to harassment of another, and .

(b)which he knows or ought to know amounts to harassment of the other. .

(2)For the purposes of this section, the person whose course of conduct is in question ought to know that it amounts to harassment of another if a reasonable person in possession of the same information would think the course of conduct amounted to harassment of the other."

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1997/40/section/1

Cheers
Richard
 
Joined
15 Dec 2007
Messages
8,011
Reaction score
2,112
Location
Bristol
Country
United Kingdom
As above, don't mess around with this joker. Get the police involved, poss a visit to the station with all your evidence may be better. Refuse to speak to the 'builder' - ask him to write to you. Telling him to sue you is a good move.

Note for the future - builders build houses. Kitchen fitters fit kitchens. Many builders are jacks of all trades........................, but a good kitchen fitter can make even the cheapest units, etc look good. Same thing goes for builders who turn their hands to plumbing, often with farcical results. Most people who call themselves builders and then agree to fit kitchens for a few hundered quid aren't really builders at all. All the good ones are far too busy to bother with a project like this. There are odd exceptions to this, but I'm talking about the majority of cases.
 
Joined
12 Mar 2011
Messages
1,711
Reaction score
347
Location
Glasgow
Country
United Kingdom
The police are always reluctant to get involved in civil / personal disputes where they feel they (the police) are being used as a pawn against another party.

Make it clear to them that the civil side of things is being taken care of, and you are not asking them to get involved in that. Make it clear that you are reporting the crime of sending threatening messages which have put you in a state of fear and alarm.
 
Joined
17 May 2008
Messages
8,416
Reaction score
1,129
Country
United Kingdom
A builder to fit kitchen units?

That's just plain nuts.
 
Joined
21 Oct 2014
Messages
18
Reaction score
0
Location
Surrey
Country
United Kingdom
I have not heard from him since he sent that text and he has not been too the house. I think he would be really stupid to break into our house and smash up our kitchen - after he sent me a text saying that is his plan, but you never know.

I also contacted MyBuilder.com and they made a note on his account. I have asked them not to contact him directly because we do not want to further antagonize him but they want to be kept updated.

Re: He was our plasterer who said he could fit our kitchen which was one of the biggest mistakes we made. He sunk all of our light switches, never covered up any floorboards so that we had to scrape plaster off them for weeks because we were worried that the dust may come come up later through the carpet, and on some walls the plaster just fell off because he probably forgot to pva them.

Our kitchenfitter now is twice the price, but you can see the difference straight away. He is married to his spirit level where I do not think the plasterer owned one.

Doing up a 3 bedroom house has been a very steep learning curve for us. Shame we have to pay for so much twice :(
 
Joined
15 Dec 2007
Messages
8,011
Reaction score
2,112
Location
Bristol
Country
United Kingdom
I also contacted MyBuilder.com

Ah. It's becoming clearer now. Recommendations from friends, family, neighbours, colleagues or even trade associations - anyone but Mickey Mouse web sites.



Our kitchenfitter now is twice the price, but you can see the difference straight away.

Because it's his trade. Fitting a kitchen isn't just knowing about screwing units to a wall. It takes skill, experience and the right kit if you want a job to be proud of. Horses for courses....................you wouldn't get a vet to fill your teeth.

At least you'll know next time. ;)
 
Joined
17 May 2008
Messages
8,416
Reaction score
1,129
Country
United Kingdom
"Shame we have to pay for so much twice"

Pay peanuts... you get monkeys.
 
Joined
4 Jan 2014
Messages
1,271
Reaction score
183
Location
Lanarkshire
Country
United Kingdom
Ah the generic term 'Builder'!! When you consider the number of Tradesmen it takes to construct & complete a house, how the hell did they come up with that term??!!

I blame the media for these disastrous situations. The poor unsuspecting British public doesn't have a clue where to start with projects of this nature.
The media have jovial, likeable individuals like Tommy Walsh, who is in it for vast personal gain & portrays himself as a master of all trades. Him & Roger Bisby etc are a complete PITA & have a limited knowledge of anything in the building trade.

Then you have the likes of James at Plumbingfarts. Courting a celebrity status for personal gain, what an rsole!!
 
Joined
2 Feb 2006
Messages
46,146
Reaction score
3,212
Location
Staffordshire
Country
United Kingdom
Ah the generic term 'Builder'!! When you consider the number of Tradesmen it takes to construct & complete a house, how the hell did they come up with that term??!!
In the image below you see an extension we recently finished.
I dug the foundations with a machine. I and my colleague did all the brick/blockwork. Fitted the joists. Built the roof from scratch. Tiled it in. Did all the lead-work. Did all the roof-line stuff. Did all of the dabbing and some of the skimming. Fitted skirts, archies, window boards and doors.

What would you say my title is?
 
Sponsored Links
Top