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My F**king Builder.

(438 Posts)
PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 01-Sep-09 18:36:12

He took all his tools last week, after receiving an agreed additional payment (from the final that we owe him) To clear the loft for the final lot of plastering he said. To be able to gain perspective he said. (he did not do this last time he plastered and there is only remedial plastering to do now up there, the rest is on the stairs, hallway etc). He talked to us about this and that, all nice.

After about 30 mins, I became a bit suspicious, again that he might have done a runner as he took everything apart from a yellow bucket. He took is ladder, why would you do this if you were plastering at height? Anyway, I am naturally suspicious. It is part of my job, it is part of my make-up. DH was a bit worried too, but we put it down to being nervous about this job. And I reminded myself of his reassuring conversation about him completing and DH and I agreed we were being unecessarily suspicious.

He was not coming in monday he said, bank holiday, out with the kids, he said.

This morning, he did not show. Did not answer his mobile. DH and I have been panicking. Eventually at 11am he phones.

And he said:

His younger brother has been rushed to hospital, is critical, collapsed lung (he only has one apparantly) and next 48 hours are critical. it had only just happened. He would try to get his plasterer mate to help him out.

Now. I am very cynical. DH said, initially, he appeared genuine. But DH is a very forgiving person and sees the best in everyone. I don't. DH started to doubt whether this was the truth or a blag. But, we are very nervous about whether this is true or not.

I actually want it to be true, so he that it means he has not done a runner with most of our money and left us in a hellhole. Does not make me a nice person I feel But then I also think he is very elaborate with his stories, has been so far and this smacks of some bullshit.

Either way, this week is dead for any work. and I am getting closer to my due date. And now, calm, chilled relaxed DH is starting to pull his hair out.

Sorry. Half of you probably won't even know what on earth I am banging on about but I needed to vent as I am so annoyed and upset and stressed and fed up it is unreal. I have no space. I am not sleeping as I am sharing with a toddler who talks in her sleep and a DH who is smoking too much and therefore snoring.


Pannacotta Tue 01-Sep-09 19:12:45

Poor you.
Is there any way you can find out if he is telling the truth?
Can you ask him to organise someone else to help out instead, presuming his excuse is genuine?

eandh Tue 01-Sep-09 19:16:34

did you pay him cash or cheque if latter I'd be tempted to cancel it until work completed

Hassled Tue 01-Sep-09 19:17:07

You have his mobile number. Do you have his address? If there is no communication tomorrow, and assuming you're still not buying the iffy-sounding brother in hospital story, then write to him making some reference to the Small Claims Court to reclaim money owed. Text, if that's all you have re contact. Put the frighteners on him, in a No More Bullshit sort of way.

curlyredhead Tue 01-Sep-09 19:22:01

Oh no. Have been lurking on your other threads - was so much hoping it wasn't you when I saw the title.

Don't think I've got any useful thoughts, will just keep fingers crossed that, whatever the truth of the brother situation, he gets your work finished asap.

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 01-Sep-09 19:24:33

pannacott I considered phoning the hosp and pretending to be a relative, but don't know his brother's first name. I considered that he might be doing another job, so contemplated camping outside his house in the morning and checking where he went blush.

We are putting a plan of action into place. We are giving him 48 hours from this morning to come up with an alternative for us. In the meantime we are organising ourselves for the worst.

DH has moved all the storage upstairs into the loft, we have got back DDs old room of sorts, at least to put all her toys/bookcases/drawers in which were in the front room. DHs friends helped with this mammoth task while I was out with DD, I did not know, so it was a nice surprise to return home to. We are going to finish the front room ourselves (thats a btw, he had ripped out or fireplace and has not finished the small bit of palstering that was not finished, and putting the skirting back). then we are going to decorate in here, as we can.

Our friend knows a plasterer, will have a word with him, see if he can do something on the cheap, out of hours work so to speak. We are going to talk to our architect/structural engineer to recommend a builder who will work for us in a favourable manner (ie not take advantage of the situation and rip us off).

The most urgent thing is the electrician, who we cannot get hold of as we have not got a number for him (he worked through builder) and we have lights that have blown over the last couple of days and the hallway light is flashing when turned off.

We are planning, getting our head around the fact that we might have to pay some-one to do the remedial work and sue the fucker.

ilovemydogandmrobama Tue 01-Sep-09 19:26:11

Is it too late to cancel the check?

HerHonesty Tue 01-Sep-09 19:26:39

one way would be to find a plasterer, get his quote and ring up your builder and ask him to refund the money given you are about to drop.

unlikely. but worth a try.

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 01-Sep-09 19:31:31

eandh we paid him cash, which is a fucker. we are kicking ourselves. We were so stupid, so niave even now, due to desperation in getting it all done. I al so cynical, but even I did not beleive someone would rip some-one off, especially when they are about to give birth to their second child, and leaving them in absolute chaos and very very broke once this is all sorted sad. We should never have paid him a penny more. But certainly not cash. At least, if I ever get to have revenge, if i do not get money back, I have proof of him working for cash and I will fucking shop the bastard to the yax man (he has signed typed receipts from us for all money we have handed over) Presuming of course he is lying.

hassled yes we have his address and mobile number. I don;t want to be heavy handed if he is genuine, as it would be awful for his brother to be so poorly. But it all seems too coincidental. And his story seems too elaborate. Too Grand. The ones I disbeleive at work, are the ones who tell tall tales, the ones who have small things wrong tend to get my benefit of doubt.

LyraSilvertongue Tue 01-Sep-09 19:32:55

That story does sound a bit elaborate. I had a plumber once who didn't show up. Rang the following week with a story about being rushed to hospital. I believed him and felt bad for doubting him.
Arranged another time for him to come round and, surprise surprise, he didn't turn up. We still owed him some money and we never paid. And he didn't dare show his face to ask for it (was only £100 or so).

noddyholder Tue 01-Sep-09 19:35:50

Pavlov have had the same and it was all bollocks (sorry but it still makes me boil)Go to his house and get things straight.

Pannacotta Tue 01-Sep-09 19:36:01

I think I might contemplate parking outside his house and following him in the morning and see where that leads.

If he is telling porkies then I agree that threatening him with small claims might work.

Am very sorry you are going through this. Do not wish to rub your face in it but I dont realy get why you paid him more (in cash) after the previous cock ups...

But hope you can sort this out and get your home semi prepared for your imminent new arrival...

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 01-Sep-09 19:36:14

The biggest cost left is the fire doors not yet in, probably not ordered. And i presume the reason the electrician has not appeared even though he was due last week and before, is not that he is on holiday. But rather that he has not been paid and he will not be coming back.

Its the biggest disaster I have ever experienced. I cannot see if ending any time soon. I am so upset, so angry, so annoyed with ourselves, we have been so so so so stupid and trusting even though my gut instinct has been telling me not to be, my rational side is calling me paranoid. My mother always said follow your instinct.

sad. I just want to cry. This atmosphere is so bad for our lovely happy daughter. It is not a good way for her to be spending the final few weeks with just us sad.

All I want to to is go around there and bloody well yell and him to get it sorted.

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 01-Sep-09 19:41:27

pannacotta because we are stupid. Because he is a fucking crook and sucked us in with his pleasantries and pleas of desperation, because he could not wait for the cheque to clear before buying the final lot of materials. Because he could not continue without these materials, because despite everything else he was still coming back and working, and he had fixed the faults and although being a bit of an arse was still turning up, even if he sporadic about it. Because we believed him.

Don't worry about rubbing our faces in it. We are kicking ourselves more than we could possibly say, we have done since pretty much the moment we let him leave and started to realise he might not come back.

We still owe him some money, but not as much as the work that is left to do.

noddy did you get it sorted? what happened?

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 01-Sep-09 19:45:14

Because despite working with crooks every day, and hearing the things people do to other people, I never thought it would happen to us. because I still beleived that no-one would be so fucking callous really.

Because we thought if we did not, he would not return due to no cash and we would not be able to finish.

I so so so so hope I am just ultra cynical. But the more we both think about it, the more we are bricking it. The more unlikely it is that its the truth. Not at this stage.

allaboutme Tue 01-Sep-09 19:48:55

If you are worried about going in heavy handed just in case he is genuine - then how about going round and seeing him and say that you have thought it through and while you are very sorry he is unable to work while his brother is sick, you really need the work finished before baby is born. So unless he is able to come tomorrow and complete work? you would like the balance of the money back NOW please...
If he says 'I'll come to finish tomorrow' and you dont quite believe him, then just say casually 'oh i'm so reliveed we wont have to go down the small courts claim with this after all. we've had to do that before and its a pain, even though it does work! and of course you wouldnt want to get caught working for cash either i suppose would you?'
Scare him into finishing or refunding you!!

noddyholder Tue 01-Sep-09 19:50:37

I had to let it go.I rang him and he said his brother was ill in hospital I bought it.then dp rang him and he obviously didn't realise it was my dp and told him another story about having to go to spain to rescue his wife in a flood in their holiday home.Dp then said What about your sick brother and all hell lt loose/Sadly we had to pay another builder to finish it

noddyholder Tue 01-Sep-09 19:55:48

Speak to him and say although you are a reasonable person in your present condition etc you have no choice but to hand over dealing with the whole job to someone else and trading standards will be advising you.I am sure the inland revenue would be v interested

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 01-Sep-09 19:56:24

noddy sad.
allaboutme thats a good idea. DH has insisted we will give him 48 hours. He is so gullible he will not do anything before this time, to give him time to prove himself. FFS. it has already cost us a lot of money, his fucking gullibility as it was on his insistence we handed over the additional money both times.

But I will broach the subject of going round there and approaching it as you said.

LIZS Tue 01-Sep-09 19:58:38

oh bugger on your behalf , can't believe it is still dragging on . Sorry I've nothing more constructive to add

Northernlurker Tue 01-Sep-09 20:00:54

I actually would want to sit outside the house and see where he goes tomorrow. Then you'll know where you are - if his doing another job then it's time to sue him because he ain't coming back.

noddyholder Tue 01-Sep-09 20:02:20

Do you have anything at all in writing?Have you paid all cash

ilovemydogandmrobama Tue 01-Sep-09 20:05:04

Pavlov, I think you need to put this in perspective. He hasn't shown up for one day. Yes, irritating, infuriating and a total breach of the peace process negotiations, but think you both need each other at this stage equally.

I'd give him a call tomorrow and ask what his plans are. Say that you're giving him 48 hours to get back on track otherwise you'll need to reconsider your position.

LyraSilvertongue Tue 01-Sep-09 20:07:02

Ilovemydog, all indication though are that he isn't coming back. The tall stories, the taking of the tools. Presumably he'd need tools if he was planning on doing any more work.

noddyholder Tue 01-Sep-09 20:09:38

The tools is a dead giveaway sadly.Why didn't he leave them for today?I would be considering action now.You don't need the stress

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