We live in a terrace, and the gardens are accessible via a back lane with an alleyway at the end of the block of houses. The next street along backs onto the same lane, and there should be a fence separating the two but it's been gone for years. There was a spate of break-ins, so about a year ago one of the guys from the other street arranged to have 2 7ft gates put up at the end of the alleys for security. 7 houses are affected but three of these are HMOs and we just went ahead and gave them keys, landlords impossible to get hold of and it makes their properties more secure as well. Chap who did it (one of the people on the other street) said it would cost about £50 per household of the 4 of us paying, ended up about £75.
Now the gate on our side has started to be very hard to open, as the lock has slipped. You turn the key, nothing happens, so you have to kick the gate at key level (slightly higher than waist level...!) and this dislodges it. Has been the case for a couple of months now, nobody else has mentioned it but it must be a problem for the other houses on our side. Is it fair to go back to the guy who originally put up the gates and ask him to fix it since we paid through the nose in the first place? Or do we need to find someone else to do it?
Find someone else. This man was doing you a favour, I don't for a moment think he made a profit on it (two large gates plus locks and multiple keys would have soon added up), you can't possibly hold him responsible for a lock slipping a year later .
I've put lots of WD40 in, that helps the key turn through 360 degrees but the difficulty is that the bolt part doesn't actually go all the way back in any more. That's why I was hoping there might be a simple solution.
I use the gate every day as I go to work by bike, so have tried many many things and several times had to give up hope and wheel bike through the house - on the one hand it's more secure when it's working, but on the other there have been a lot of times when it simply won't open and I've had to leave bike in the side alley overnight instead of being able to get it round into the shed.
It was me and DH who ended up paying for the spare keys for our side of the street, he gave us one for the three houses and it didn't seem fair to ask him to get more done.
Yes, if he put them together then ask for advice. Apologies, from the way the OP was worded I thought you meant that it was his job to maintain the gates for the rest of his years. If he can't do anything then I think you should arrange for new lock to be fitted and collect money from everyone to pay for it - people do get put off helping out when they are then held responsible for any problem forevermore.