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SolicitorRM
SolicitorRM, Solicitor
Category: Law
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Experience:  Director and Principal Solicitor. UK
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I recently paid a registered landscape Gardener £1000 to

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I recently paid a registered landscape Gardener £1000 to convert my already built shed into a personal garden bar. The brief was the bar, paint my fences, paint my flags & repoint them also & to put new bamboo up at the back of the garden. I told him I had £1000 I have messages where u done some calculations and he reported back that it would all be possible. He asked for £400 upfront the dates I have on my messages then a further £100 a day later. This was Easter weekend again I have proof he promised to start work but let me down every day up until Tuesday 14th April. This day he asked me for the remainder £500 which I handed over totally trusting his word that he would work wonders. The weds he came late went early, Thursday he didn’t turn up all morning claiming he was ill finally came at 12:30 for a few hours and on the Friday he assured me my garden was finished but he would be back on the Monday to paint 3 more fence panels black and the inside of my shed magnolia and then he would see if he could rob some wood from other jobs he had that weekend to try & sort a bar. I stood there in shock and asked him where the materials that I had paid for were for the bar he said there wasn’t enough money left out if £1000. I asked him was the paint he was using on the flags the correct paint needed to stop it coming off he assured me it was, within the first few days it got wet the flags started peeling, the pointing job literally looked like sand just washing away & everywhere I looked I noticed large areas of fence panels he had missed. Upon my questioning at first he became defensive of his work despite me having video evidence - it took me getting a make friend to ring him and ask all the right questions for him to then apologise and promise that he would rectify the job to the Standard he’d been paid for. This went in for a further 2 weeks his promises of dates he would come then the let downs every time, I repeatedly asked to see receipts and never received any. He finally turned up with a young lad he left at my home to paint the outstanding 3 panels & again promised that he’d purchased my materials for the bar. By this point over a month since he’d had the full amount off me my garden was a state he had repointed and done a proper job this time but he was still telling me he’d used the correct paint on the flags despite him seeing it come offf. The paint was masonary paint. Not designed for flags but for walls that don’t get walked on. I again felt I had no choice but to have a male Chaperone with me when he came back to pick up his worker and we asked him to write a check list of all outstanding work he had to complete and by which date with his signature which I have. Again he never showed up by the date but he put £300 in my account. He has told me he paid £400 for materials but I have pictures of all paint used & when looked up along with the bamboo it’s nowhere near that amount. The reciepts are yet to surface. He said during one of our many exchanges and crossed words that he usually gets paid £200 a day but I am yet to come across a painter charge that much and did a professional to take 4 days to paint a full garden is ridiculous. He never went near the bar but felt justified to charge me 4 days labour didn’t the worst paint job with huge panels left out & the wrong paint used on the flags which looked a mess after a week. I now have to purchase more materials to rectify his shoddy work plus again but timber which I was told on two separate occasions in a message that he’d paid for and was waiting to pick up and then of course the cost of getting someone else in to do the job he was paid for. The way he had continued to treat me throughout all of this, promising to come and start it then lying and making excuses has enraged me to the point where I have sent him various very strong worded messages & threats as I feel like the man had literally cane into my home and violated me took my money & has been laughing at me
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Manchester
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: none legal, tried to do it amicable and have him chance after chance I gave every message and voice note but he has let me down every time, I felt I had to have a male friend here with me to back me up as I am a single mum and I truly believe he thought he could do this to me and keep on taking advantage of my mind nature. When confronted by a male who knew more than me about the work and so asked the right questions and challenged things like the wrong paint the tradesmen didn’t say much, whereas whe he’s dealt with me on my own & ive asked him he even told me it’s not his fault it’s the manufacturers fault despite me showing him online what masonary paint is used for. By gettting a 3rd party involved he did credit me back £300 and told me I should be happy with that. The work he done is not worth £700 it’s a mess honestly & when challenged on this again he became narcissistic and his tone with me is that I have no right to be going mental. Again no reciepts have materialised. I am beyond angry at the audacity of him
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Yes I have resorted to name calling after being completely taken for a ride by this individual and I have threatened to ruin him and he will be sorry he’s done this to me and I mean every word

Hi thank you for your enquiry and patience. Hoping that the instructions on what you needed done can be evidence in your text messages then you can certainly pursue him for breach of contract. It would be best to get an alternative painter on two to give you quote for the remedial work required to get to a satisfactory finish. This will be the damages you can claim. Because the value is not very high, it may not be worth it to get a cpr compliant report on the standard if his work as they can cost a significant sum. You should send him a letter giving him 14 days to reimburse you 700 if you think all the work has to be redone or if some of the work is ok then just the sum needed to get the work done professionally by someonelse. if he does not pay you can file your claim by filling claim form N1, attaching your particulars of claim and attaching your evidence and sending

.. the package in triplicate to the County court money claims centre enclosing payment for the issue fee. You should not worry about the court procedure as your claim will be a small claims track claim, the procedure will not be complex and you get directions from court in writing for the different steps.

If you are claiming the full £700 then the issue fee is £70. The Claim Form is here for you; https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/688390/n1-eng.pdf You could opt to apply online here: https://www.moneyclaims.service.gov.uk/eligibility/mcol-eligibility

and the form that tells you of the fees is here:https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/789201/ex50-eng.pdf

Try an avoid arguments with him because if you say anything slanderous he may sue you for damages.I hope this helps and I would be grateful for your rating at your earliest convenience. all the best

Customer: replied 13 days ago.
I have many many bits of evidence, photos, videos, all of the correspondence and dates & timelines. I have been abusive in messages in the last week when it became apparent that he was never ever going to finish it & he decided that £300 is all I deserved. Through sheer frustration and anger both at him & myself for allowing someone to take advantage of me like this. I have ranted and called him all sorts, I’ve never threatened to get him physically hurt but I have threatened his works van. The lies and the let downs pushed me to the brink and after being left £1000 down still a month later to have an amateur non look garden and no bar i lost my moral compass.
Will this go against any decision

If you have a lot of evidence then i recommend you use the postal application form as online there is a limit on how much you can attach.

No that is not a defence against a breach of contract claim, so dont worry. and if you were saying this to him direct but without other people watching then you are able to defend a claim of slander which he cant raise as a defence against yours but could start it as a new claim. If he did a terrible job he probably expected you to be very upset so he may not take any action.

SolicitorRM and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 13 days ago.
I have so much proof of the many times I gave him chance after chance to finish the job and each time he let me down. The pattern & timeline of events will correspond with the decline in politeness & patience from myself. I had completely ran out. I feel confident now I have a very very strong case against him, I just wish I would of thought of this route earlier and not allowed myself to levels of anger I’ve felt & expressed to him this last week especially.
Customer: replied 13 days ago.
Also I only have his phone number & business name
Customer: replied 13 days ago.
reg plate I took pics of his van