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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
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Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I recently bought engineered wooden flooring from a bespoke

Customer Question

I recently bought engineered wooden flooring from a bespoke manufacturer. When our builders started fitting it they told us the quality of the floor supplied was terrible. We queried this with the manufacturer and they vehemently denied it in a long and detailed email saying the flooring was high quality and the fitters didn't know what they were talking about. On the basis of that strong reassurance we finished laying the flooring after which the flooring was in a terrible state. We wrote again to the manufacturers, including photos, showing the worn, scuffed, and scratched flooring which had not been used then, only fitted and asking them how we should proceed. They told us to clean the floor thoroughly so any damage could be assessed. Again we followed their instructions and sent a follow-up complaint with more photos showing the state of the cleaned floor. I told them they need to fix the problem and they are sending someone to assess the situation - however they have already told me that by fitting the flooring I have accepted that the goods were acceptable so they are no longer liable. That cannot be right.

A secondary issue is that the flooring supplied was also a completely different colour to the sample on the basis of which I placed the order. The flooring provided supplied is black and we only ever discussed dark brown flooring and were only sent dark brown samples to choose from. My husband was overseeing the renovation and he didn't notice the colour difference. I arrived after the flooring was fitted with the original sample in hand and immediately noticed the colour difference, which is obvious when comparing the floor to the sample.

The floor does not seem to be fitted very well either (rough edges around doorways and floorboards that move a lot), but the fitters say the problem was with the quality of the flooring which they had flagged to us immediately. No-one wants to take any responsibility and we are left with brand new flooring that looks appalling.

How do I proceed? Are my consumer rights compromised by the fact that we went ahead and completed the floor fitting after we had raised concerns to the manufacturer and they had told us there was no problem? How do I go about getting a refund or replacement? And I also need the manufacturers to pay for the cost of removing their faulty goods and putting in new flooring. Will my ability to pursue the manufacturer for supplying faulty flooring undermined if the fitting was not done well (which the manufacturers will probably claim while the fitters say it was because the flooring was sub-standard)? Help!
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
Would you please summarise the facts?

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