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To pay this angry man for work not done?(165 Posts)
Basically, I've been a complete and utter fool and yesterday was doorstepped by a man working at my neighbour's house. He said I needed some work doing to my gutters, said he'd do it there and then, didn't appreciate me saying that I'd call my DH and discuss with him, and insisted that I do it and pay him the amount by balance transfer (because I at first said no, using no physical cash as a reason). My neighbours (who I previously got on well with) were with him, vouching for him and insisting that I needed it doing because it was affecting both properties etc. It wasn't a huge amount of money (£70) so I agreed.
Believe it or not, I'm usually less ridiculous than this, but I let myself down by agreeing to this deeply unpleasant man who was patronising and offensive. I'm so embarrassed of myself.
Anyway, he spent five minutes on the roof, showed me a few bits of concrete he'd pulled out, said he couldn't do the rest because it was too rotten and gave me some bank details. Now I don't know who this bloke was, but my neighbours knows him by first name and these bank details are for someone completely different.
Today, we've been and taken pictures of the work not done and contacted him to say we'd pay half, but not the full amount because much of the work was left undone. He won't agree to this, swore and shouted down the phone and said he'll be coming round to discuss it "face to fucking face" and basically that he won't let it go.
I've contacted CAB and I believe the law is on our side, but I think I should just pay it for a quiet life and less threats of him returning, damaging our property etc. I don't want to be worried everytime the kids are in the garden for the sake of £70! My DH hates confrontation and would rather do this. But if I pay this random person named in the bank details, what proof will I have that I've paid at all? I don't want him to come round and demand more.
It's starting to feel a bit like an extortion racket! But then it's only £70! Please tell me what to do now, because I can't seem to trust myself lately!
I wouldn’t entertain him any further. You made a fair offer which was refused, he can get lost. Keep photos showing the work wasn’t done and wrote down his name and details, as well as the bank details he’s trying to get you to pay into, and ignore him from now on.
I would contact the police and trading standards.
'Only' £70? Give it to me!
I've contacted Trading Standard already, but I'm wondering if the extra worry of him returning in the dead of night is worth it. I am a naturally anxious person!
I would ask for an invoice detailing the work carried out, with full name and address and bank details.
Its a tough one, as I would hate to be threatened, but in principle I would stand my ground.
He's back next door again now incidentally, doing work in their garden. I daren't look out the window!
Similar happened to a friend of mine. She contacted the police who were very helpful, made a record of the threats and gave her a number to ring if any further trouble. These idiots get away with it by being intimidating. They back off as soon as police are involved.
Stand your ground op.
These people are all bluster.
Well personally I'd tell him to fuck right off.
But if you don't want to do that - If he contacts you again I would do as a PP suggested and ask him to post an invoice with his business name, address, contact number and details of the work done.
I bet he's related to your neighbours somehow.
If he starts on you again and you feel threatened, call the police. He’s a scammer, making money by this kind of intimidation.
I would contact the police and let him know. Imagine what he'd be like with an elderly person on their own.
I would wait until the end of the day and see if he comes over to discuss “face to fucking face”. Reassess based on what happens today. I would be VERY VERY reluctant to part with a penny, not even half, considering it wasn’t work you asked to be done, or even wanted done, and as far as you can ascertain he hasn’t even done anything. By his own admission he “couldn’t finish the job” so cannot demand the entire amount. If he comes round I would say that he was the one that told you he couldn’t complete the work promised, so how can he demand full payment?
I understand how you feel though - I’m not normally an anxious person but we had a similar / not so similar situation once and it made me very nervous knowing they knew my address. However, most humans aren’t total lunatics and wouldn’t actually do anything to someones house over £70!
It no doubt goes against your grain, but I'd go out there and confront him now, and tell him calmly why you're not paying. You shouldn't have to hide in your own house, and it's better to have it out with him sooner rather than later. If he becomes aggressive tell him that behaviour is unacceptable and then disengage once you've got your message across.
Might be worth a post on local fb groups to see if he's tried it on with anyone else.
I had a sumilar problem only with a lot more money. Someone came to fix a small issue with my roof and I agreed that while they were fixing the small issue they could do more extensive work to renew it further. They demanded money within hours of doing the work, which pissed me off, so I decided to make them wait 24 hours. Luckily (or unluckily in some ways) it rained heavily before the 24 hours was up and my house was literally flooded! Paint ruined, carpets sodden everywhere.
Upshot was they said if I didn’t pay they were going to come and take away my whole roof covering! Police said they wouldn’t help as it was a civil dispute. CAB referred me to Trading Standards. Woman from Trading Standards actually phoned the guy and told him the “contract” was totally unenforceable. Within 10 minutes she had called me back to say that he had agreed to go nowhere near my property but please when I had someone else fix it would I leave the lead for him to pick up (which I did).
Trading Standards were great and they can really scare a contractor because they can prosecute him and prevent him from getting further work. I totally recommend getting in touch with them. Much better than making a dodgy payment.
Why on earth would you pay him? He’s a chancer who is trying to intimidate you into coughing up. Imagine if he did that to an elderly or vulnerable person? Don’t pay him and call the police if he shows up.
I really feel for you - it's awful being harassed like that on your own doorstep. Next door's tradesman did it to me last Summer - stuck his foot in the door and everything. I eventually said a firm "no" and he went but I was so so uncomfortable and cross about it afterwards. I would contact local police too; we've had a spate of elderly people ripped off like this recently, it's not ok to make people feel intimidated in their own home!
Mention tax, HMRC and guarantees. He probably isn't registered with HMRC or any trade bodies.
Do you suspect he may be scamming your neighbour too? Could you speak to them privately?
I'd ignore him.
If he comes round, don't answer the door. If he starts hammering and shouting, record him and call 999.
You don’t need to be embarrassed. Sometimes you are just caught out. You’re tired etc and the form of bullying just works.
Shame on him.
And shame on your neighbours.
It’s a tough one as you just want it to go away.
I’d only feel comfortable if I had my husbands backing. The reality is that I’d want him to sort this kind of thing if I felt threatened.
I’d be tempted to message saying half is fair. And that if he visits my property and is threatening you will immediately call the police.
Contact the police and don't give him the money. I know it might feel like you can give him the money to get rid of this situation now, but actually you're making it more likely you'll have more hassle from him - because once you've handed money over he knows he can scam you.
If he's a chancer he's going to want to be under the radar so police input is more likely to be effective. Police are cracking down on doorstep scammers because of covid so I'm sure they'd be supportive re this.
Stop messing round here, call the police immediately & get their advice. These people are criminals who will be back for more if they think you are stupid enough to pay them & can be intimidated.
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