Thank you. When a person enters into a contract for work and materials, where the main focus is labour and skill, the Consumer Rights Act 2015 says that the work must be:
· Carried out with reasonable care and skill (to the same standard as any reasonably competent person in that trade or profession)
· Finished within a reasonable time (unless a specific time frame has been agreed)
· Provided at a reasonable cost (unless a specific price has been agreed)
In addition, any information exchanged in communications between the parties, whether written or verbal, is binding if the consumer relies on it. This will include quotations and any promises about timescales or the results to be achieved.
If there are problems with any of the above, the customer will have certain rights:
1. Substandard work - the trader should either redo the parts of the work which are inadequate or perform the whole service again at no extra cost to the customer. This must be done within a reasonable time and without causing significant inconvenience. If this is not possible, you can claim a price reduction, based on the severity of the issues. If they simply refuse to resolve the issues, you can consider getting someone else to rectify the issues and either deduct these costs from the total owed to the original trader, or pursue them for any extra costs that have been incurred.
2. Delays – if the work has substantially gone over the agreed schedule or not been performed within a reasonable time, you can also ask for a price reduction to cover any financial losses or inconvenience caused as a result. If the work is incomplete and they refuse to work to the agreed schedules it is possible to get someone else to finish it off and charge the original trader for these additional costs.
So this is what you can try and argue with him about to pay less than what was agreed in order to cover the issues you have experienced. He cannot be stopped from going to court if he wanted to, but at least you have options to counter-argue any claim he makes.
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