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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50488
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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Madam I am a self employed plasterer and have been

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Dear Sir/Madam
I am a self employed plasterer and have been for the last 28 years.
In May of this year I was asked by a customer to remove the old render from his property and apply a new rendered finish. We agreed stage payments and I started the job when asked. I did 3 elevations of his property and once finished I arranged for the scaffold to be removed. It was at this point that he rang and said that he wasn't satisfied with the finish and would I meet him to see how we could rectify this. At the meeting he pointed out 2-3 small areas that he wasn't happy with and asked what could be done. As it was a textured render I told him that you couldn't patch it as this would show more than the the small areas that he'd pointed out. He was also having a conservatory fitted at this time so timing was of the essence. After a long conversation, to show good will, I let him talk me into re doing the 3 elevations with a thin coat render system all at my own cost.
I have just finished the final elevation and he has complained again about uneven areas and shading differences, all things that I pointed out to him before I started.
I have not taken payment from the first application which is £2866 and the latest application has cost me £2800 in material and scaffolding costs plus 7 of labour.
What are the implications of me asking them to get someone else that they are happy with to do the application as I cannot sustain the loss of material and labour.
Haydn Lucock
Hello, my name is***** am a solicitor on this site and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How do you propose to resolve this - would you not take payment for the work done and just let them continue with someone else?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Ben, thank you for the speedy response.

I'm more than happy to do this but I need to know what the implications of this course of action.

I should also point out , that since starting work for them I have been informed by other tradesmen that they have a reputation for having needlessly high expectations of work which has caused other tradesmen to leave.

Many thanks


Hello Haydn
As a self employed tradesman you would have the right to nominate a suitable replacement to undertake the work. The implications here should be minimal – after all you are not going to charge them for the initial work and even if the standard they had expected was not reached by you, there was still work of value being undertaken so they would have been expected to pay part of the costs. They may not have had to pay for the remedial works but some of the initial work may have had to be compensated. So if you are not going to take any payment this already puts you one step ahead so to speak because they cannot claim that you have charged them for work which was not of satisfactory quality. Also you have not left the work in a state which was worse than it was originally. Therefore, it would be difficult for them to claim any compensation from you, which they would have only had to do if they had already paid for the work and have then had to expend further costs to resolve the issues you had left them with. But they are starting from a zero balance s they have not paid for your work so they cannot really claim from you.
You have already made attempts to rectify the alleged issues and they are still not satisfied. You cannot be forced to continue rectifying these, especially if the work was already done to a reasonable standard. So if you have found someone suitable who is willing to undertake the remaining work, you could provide these as a replacement and considering the fact they have not paid for your work to date they cannot really claim that they have been left in a worse position than when they had started this. So it means the risks against you are quite low in that respect.
I trust this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page). If for any reason you are unhappy with my response or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
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