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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 12083
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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We had an extension built last year, we asked the bricklayer

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We had an extension built last year, we asked the bricklayer if he could price digging out and levlling part of the garden, build a retaining wall and lay slabs. He quoted £8,000 which in hidight was way overpriced but we had no idea about this kindof job and we trusted him. He said he would take off £400 if we paid each instalment in cash and that if he could dump the 80-100 tonnes of soil in the neighbouring building site it would save us the cost of dumping ( best part of £1000), the earth was dumped next door as hoped to save money. At final instalment he refused to take any money off saying there were other expenses. We paid in cash up to that point too. . I felt i didnt have a leg to stand on as the aforementioned was verbal. This was several months ago, he was paid. When the granite labs had dried out he had laid several slabs upside down , when replacing a slab he took chunks out of surrounding slabs and all thecsteps he laid came loose. He has ignored texts and phonecalla after saying he would rectify. I saw him 2 weeks ago and he became very stroppy with me and raised his voice. He still has not appeared. Im at a loss at what i can do now.. If anything.
Kind regards
Thank you for your question. I am a Scots lawyer and will help you with this.
The contractor is clearly in breach of contract as he hasn't carried out the contract in a proper and workman like manner. You have requested him to carry out remedial works having paid the contract price in full. He has refused to carry out remedial works.
In that situation you remedy is to write to him giving him a final opportunity to carry out the work. If he doesn't, you can instruct someone else to carry out the remedial works and claim the cost from him. You would be entitled to sue in the sheriff court for your additional costs.
Happy to discuss further.
Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thankyou very much for that. With regards the dumping costs and the £400 reduction if paid in cash do we have a leg to stand on? It was verbal, he spoke to me when i queried the cost. He told me it was £ x ( cannot remember exact price ) per tonne to dump the soill but if the building site allowed him to dump it there it would be a good savings... It was almost £1000. At the time of settling the bill He refused to take it off saying there were other costs and he could only take £100 off. Can we in retrospect ask him for all the receipts of these other costs as he should still have them for tax purposes? He did not give us receipts at the time but we have a mesage from him saying what other costs were incurred. I know there is probably nothing we can do about the £400 he promised to take off if paid in cash but with both of the above promises i feel he secured this work by lying about what the final costs would be. I do know i should have got tha in writing but we trusted him. Hard lesson learned.
Kind regards
You are entitled to the agreed prices even if it was verbal. He can't change that later and his costs and receipts are irrelevant. If he has not done his costings that isn't your problem.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I have paid him in full, about 4 months ago. Are you saying i can ask to be refunded the cost ( he verbally told me) of dumping the soil. The initial quote is not broken down/ itemised but he told me that the quote included the cost of dumping which we would save. Can i ask him for that money back? Would i put that in writing also?
Kind regards
Yes, if you have overpaid the contract price you can add that to your claim.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thankyou again, my final question just so i dont make a fool of myself. When you say add it to my claim.. Do you mean to ask him personally or does this have to be formally through a solicitor or small claims ourt? And it doesnt atter that this was a few months ago?
Kind regards
The fact that it was a few month ago doesn't matter.
My point is that you have a claim. For bad workmanship and also charging you the wrong amount. In the first instance you write to him about all issues. Then you get your solicitor to do so. Then you may have to take him to court and exercise the pre action protocol for court proceedings.
Thank you for your attention. I hope that you manage to get this resolved.
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