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Did we misread this or is he being a bit cheeky?

(141 Posts)
Paraballa Mon 01-Apr-19 14:45:47

This could go either way but this is just for opinions as we are paying him anyway.

We had some cupboard doors that were sticking as the frame had moved. We know a guy through our church who is a carpenter but he mainly does artisan stuff, making furniture.

Anyway DH was chatting to him and mentioned the doors and he said he'd take a look. Which he did. And he refused payment. All very lovely.

Unfortunately it happened again and the doors stuck again. DH mentioned it in a "we need to get our doors fixed again" way and the guy offered to "come and have a look". This was last summer.

He never came but kept mentioning it to DH: "oh I need to come look at your doors".

Last week he finally did. He came and literally looked at them (although they are the same as last year) then said he'd come a particular day but turned up unexpectedly sooner without notice.

All fine. I didn't mind. He came in and trimmed the doors, I asked if he could look at another one and he did, then also did some other cupboard doors he said were sticking but I hadn't noticed and I use them every day. "I did those one too for you" was what he said.

As he left I said thank you and to let us know what we owed him. Because we didn't expect it totally free.

Last night he sent an invoice for £140 covering "2 visits". (The actual work and the coming to have a look.)shock

We are totally shocked. We would have never agreed to it if we'd known he'd charge that much (£40 an hour apparently). He never said he was treating us as a client and as we asked him in July and he only just came we don't feel we were treated as a Client.

We've decided just to pay and never mention anything carpentry related to him again but did we misread? Or is he being a bit cheeky?

I'm autistic so may well have misunderstood as I often do but DH thought it was a favour too.

BatFace1 Mon 01-Apr-19 14:48:10

He's been out twice though? The first time was a favour it appears but you didn't expect another freebie did you? It's poor form for him not to mention what he charges though so you were aware beforehand

hawaii507 Mon 01-Apr-19 14:48:53

I don't think he was being cheeky. You already got it once for free. Just don't ask him again if you are not happy with his fee.

Bishbashthrash Mon 01-Apr-19 14:49:33

I've of the opinion that of you want work doing then you pay for it. He should definitely have given you a price first though.

Purplelion Mon 01-Apr-19 14:50:01

My OH is a carpenter and for 2 visits, fitting and trimming the doors he would charge a lot more than £140!

SpoonBlender Mon 01-Apr-19 14:52:03

It was poorly communicated but the bill is reasonable.

Paraballa Mon 01-Apr-19 14:52:32

I don't think I was clear. The very first time we offered payment and he refused.

Where he refers to two visits he means this time when he first literally dropped by and looked at the doors (which gave not materially changed since last year) and then came to actually do them. We were happy to pay both times but he refused payment last year and then this year he gave us the impression it was being done as a favour with no mention of quotes or payment till I said "let us know what we owe you".

WWWWicked Mon 01-Apr-19 14:54:45

The bill is very reasonable.

You asked him to do the work, he should have made his prices clear beforehand, but it’s still not an excessive bill and no I don’t think he’s cheeky.

TheQueef Mon 01-Apr-19 14:54:52

I see why you were surprised but it isn't expensive and you did gild the lilly with a carpenter. I reckon a joiner would be around that price.

Hollowvictory Mon 01-Apr-19 14:54:57

You told him to let you know what you owed him.he did just that. If you were hoping for another freebie you are the cheeky one, not him.

VladmirsPoutine Mon 01-Apr-19 14:55:05

I don't think you are being wholly unreasonable as he should have been upfront about his rates.

Bluntness100 Mon 01-Apr-19 14:55:10

I think you'd be a right cheeky fucker not to pay him if I'm honest. The bill sounds reasonable, he's done the work, and I suspect you've pissed him right off somewhere along the line.

Just pay him for his work.

Paraballa Mon 01-Apr-19 14:55:10

I agree the bill is standard rates and not unreasonable in that sense but we were surprised because he didn't treat us like a client unless he leaves all his clients hanging for 8 months then randomly turns up on the doorstep. So we thought we were getting a favour. If we'd known he was charging full rates we'd have a) expected better service and b) not bothered because we can't afford £140.

But it's done now.

allmycats Mon 01-Apr-19 14:55:28

It is you who are being a bit cheeky. He came once and did a 'freebie'.
Some time later he came out twice, once to see what needed to be done and once to make the adjustments. Charged for 3.5 hours at £40 an hour, would appear to be a fair price to me. He has to cover his travel time and all associated costs with self-employment, insurance, motoring, tools wear and tear, time spent invoicing etc etc.

What sort of price would you have expected a 'non aquaintance' to charge ?

Paraballa Mon 01-Apr-19 14:57:16

We didn't expect anything. He offered to come out. We didn't ask him to. At church we all do favours for each other all the time, there's lots of mates rates stuff goes on.

But as usual I'm obviously not communicating well here as I always get a kicking on AIBU!

Hollowvictory Mon 01-Apr-19 14:57:27

Well why did you tell him to let you know what you owed him?
He only did as you asked!

HeronLanyon Mon 01-Apr-19 14:58:37

given the previous work was for free he was unreasonable for not setting out charges before he visited this time. He may genuinely have forgotten the first visit was for free though and simply invoiced ‘as normal’. I would not pay 140. Very strictly you had no obligation to pay anything - your assumption was based on preceding relationship. He said nothing about payment. He could not enforce this is my view.
I do think you should pay him something. Not 140. Then not use him again.
If it were me I would email with a suggested amount. And explaining.

chazwomaq Mon 01-Apr-19 15:00:17

You both should have agreed the price first, but since you specifically asked how much you owe, he has simply responded normally.

Cheby Mon 01-Apr-19 15:00:54

He should have made it clear what the price would be before he did the work. That’s just standard practice.

pigsDOfly Mon 01-Apr-19 15:04:12

I suspect this is a lesson learned for you not to ask acquaintances to do jobs without establishing whether he want's paying and if so fixing a price first.

Very unfair of him to just hit you with a £140 bill after he said he wouldn't charge you for the first lot of work, and I've never been charged by anyone coming to look at the work to give me an estimate. So that's cheeky of him imo.

At the same time you were a bit unreasonable to expect him to visit twice and not pay him something for his work. I imagine he thought you were being cheeky and were expecting him to keep coming back to do extra work for which he wasn't being paid.

If he's a very skilled person and was charging you his going rate you could probably have got it done a lot cheaper by getting in a local handyman; I had several bathroom mirrors, shelves and curtain rails put up not long ago by a handyman, it didn't cost anywhere near £140.

I think you were both a bit at fault here. In future be clearer about what you expect and also expect to pay for any work you have done.

pigsDOfly Mon 01-Apr-19 15:06:28

*Oops random apostrophe on wants in my pp.

TheGrey1houndSpeaks Mon 01-Apr-19 15:08:26

He did it once at no charge. Then you asked again... He’s probably charged you to prevent you expecting a third freebie, tbh.

WWWWicked Mon 01-Apr-19 15:08:37

We didn't expect anything. He offered to come out. We didn't ask him to

You kind of did though, didn’t you? Your DH mentioned those doors were sticking again in the hope that you’d get another freebie...
we thought we were getting a favour... At church we all do favours for each other all the time

Bluntness100 Mon 01-Apr-19 15:10:50

Oh cmon op, you clearly did expect him to come out again otherwise you wouldn't have mentioned it to him again.

He's done the work. He's not over charged you. If you couldn't afford it you should never ever have asked him to come out in the first place, offering to pay and then offering again to pay, when you clearly had no intention of doing so.

Pay the man, he's done the work, you wanted the work done, let's not pretend otherwise. Expecting him to keep throwing you freebies is not on,

MidsomerBurgers Mon 01-Apr-19 15:12:41

OP, you do realise that is quite reasonable for a carpenter? He is not a builder (no disrespect to builders here).

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