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Stuart J
Stuart J, Property Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 23769
Experience:  Senior Partner at Berkson Wallace
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I had an estimate if £650 for decorating my hallway, stairs

Customer Question

I had an estimate if £650 for decorating my hallway, stairs and landing.
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Although there was extra work involved in sanding down plaster the invoice came in at over double the estimate at £1330. I'm in Kent in England. Do I have to pay?
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: I have disputed via email and paid the estimate plus 2 days extra fir the extra work
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: I was told he would keep as close to the £650 price as he could but that it would be 'a little bit more' because of the plaster.
Submitted: 20 days ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Stuart J replied 20 days ago.

Hello. Thank you for the question. It is my pleasure to assist you with this today.

Please bear with me as I will be online and off-line from time to time and therefore, may be delayed getting back to you. You will receive an email when I reply.

Was this a quote or estimate? was this for the whole job?

and why has he decided now that the plaster needed sanding and not at the time?

have you paid anything?

Customer: replied 20 days ago.
It was an estimate nit a quote but it was for the whole job. It was newly plastered so I believe he should have allowed for an amount of sanding but he said it was not a good job and needed much sanding. He said he would sort it but made no mention of a huge hike in the price.
In a further email he admits that maybe the plaster should have been called back or he should have pulled out of the job.
Expert:  Stuart J replied 20 days ago.

My suggestion would be to pay what you agreed to pay and if the person wants to argue over the rest, then have the argument, in court if necessary.

Whether the person is entitled to payment for the extra work or not would depend on whether that extra work was envisaged when the initial estimate was given.

A little bit more, to my mind is a couple of hundred pounds tops, not double.

I would suggest that you decide how much you are going to pay and let them have a cheque for that amount telling him (in writing) that it is in full and final settlement and that if he does not accept it in full and final settlement he should return it to you and you will thereafter have an argument.

Thinking about it, it would probably be better if you sent in 2 cheques, one for GBP650 which is the original price and the other for GBP200 or thereabouts which is the “extra”.

What you don’t want to be accused of is refusing to pay anything at all.

In your covering letter it needs to be marked Without Prejudice Save as to Costs and then he cannot produce it in court as any kind of admission that you owe anything extra at all.

I would be very surprised if he didn’t cash the cheques and put it down to experience.

He may return the GBP200 to you, saying it’s not enough and it would then be for you to decide whether you want to pay more of him to decide whether he wants to take you to court.

Thank you for letting me assist you with your legal question.  I am glad that I was able to help.

I am not certain whether that answers the question for you or not, but I am happy to answer any specific points arising from this.

It will be my pleasure to help you again either further with this or any future questions you have

Kind regards

Customer: replied 20 days ago.
That is excellent advice.
Thank you so much.
Expert:  Stuart J replied 20 days ago.

It was my pleasure to assist you. Please come back if anything else crops up and needs clarification.
Thank you for trusting Just Answer with your legal problem.