Author Topic: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.  (Read 12835 times)

Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #50 on: May 12, 2015, 06:44:45 am »
Quote
we didn't have any spare money left after paying for this work and were probably going to eat beans on toast for a while to pay off our debts.

Have you tried selling the television rights?  It's better than DIY SOS, that's for sure. 


Quote
Render is necessary when the bricks are not water-resistant. Rain makes bricks damp, damp freezes in winter, bricks crumble.

Sometimes it's a cheap alternative to re-pointing.  I'd a house in Suffolk with an exposed single-skin gable end that had damp.  I used a silicon fluid to paint on the absorbent bricks.  They soaked it up but it made no difference to their appearance.  It fixed the damp problem.

A lot of very old stone houses in our part of France were rendered in the 50s and 60s.  It makes them very damp as the rendering traps the moisture in walls that need to be able to breathe.  Unfortunately not only is it a tough job to remove the render, you also need planning permission!
Sic transit and all that..

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #51 on: May 12, 2015, 09:16:05 am »
Frankly, given some of the mishaps at the Asbestos Palace, I was surprised to find that they'd used actual render as opposed to a thick layer of Philadelphia Cheese. I tried licking it just in case. I presume the render and wood-cladding dates back to original build. I hear a lot of drugs were consumed in the 1960s.
!nataS pihsroW

Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #52 on: May 13, 2015, 06:22:25 pm »
Have you tried selling the television rights?  It's better than DIY SOS, that's for sure. 


Fuck me, given the latest installation I think I just might...

Don't have energy to bore y'all about it in all its detail, but he's only just woken up and realised we've not paid him anything at all for all this work yet (he didn't ask before, so he didn't get) and if he thinks he's getting it before this dispute's sorted out he's got another think coming...

I fucking hate builders.

Aunt Maud

  • Le Flâneur.
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #53 on: May 13, 2015, 06:34:29 pm »
Have you tried selling the television rights?  It's better than DIY SOS, that's for sure. 



I fucking hate SOME builders.

FTFY

I used to run a small building conservation company, not all builders are rip off merchants. Pay him a bit to keep him happy and don't let him charge you for anything that's not written down, unless you specifically ask to have it as an extra.

Make sure you withhold 10% until he's completely finished and tidied up, then pay him what you owe him and let him know he won't be getting any more.

Be nice, be fair, be firm.

Aunt Maud

  • Le Flâneur.
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #54 on: May 13, 2015, 07:41:16 pm »
It sounds like he's either too busy to write a proper quote including a payment schedule or he's incompetent.

Be wary if him.


Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #55 on: May 13, 2015, 08:59:17 pm »
The rules with builders is pay nothing until the job is done.   A reputable builder will be happy with this whereas cowboys take money and often piss off without finishing the job.

If a builder wants money for materials up front ask for the invoices and settle to them.  The well used grab is to get his discount at the supplier and sell on to you at profit.    You'll need to keep an eye on what's bought and what stays on site too.

Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #56 on: May 13, 2015, 09:05:13 pm »
Have you tried selling the television rights?  It's better than DIY SOS, that's for sure. 



I fucking hate SOME builders.

FTFY

I used to run a small building conservation company, not all builders are rip off merchants.
Be nice, be fair, be firm.

Fair enough, but my experience thus far has been limited to the ones I walk/cycle past, and their helpful comments/whistles/lucky saddles etc, and this guy, so forgive me if I'm not feeling kindly at present.

If we pay him now, we risk him downing tools and leaving us with a half-finished house. At least we retain some power this way. We have absolutely sod all spare money and no means of taking him to court etc.

Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #57 on: May 13, 2015, 09:13:08 pm »
You really do have to be wise with builders, plasterers, roofers, chippies, plasterers, plumbers, brickies, sparkies, etc., etc.   There are many excellent tradesmen and women but there are a few total tossers out there. 

My roofer forgot to replace a fascia board last year then tried to claim that it wasn't part of the job.   Why then did he replace all of the others and why does it say gutters and fascias on the quote?   Why then did he also replace the guttering where the old fascia is?    I said that would withhold £500 until the job was done.  He claims that he has to partly dismantle the roof to do it so I'm still waiting with £500 still in the bank.   Considering the section of roof is completely accessible from ground level and there is no need for a ladder or scaffold I guess that he's just written it off.

Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #58 on: May 13, 2015, 09:19:29 pm »
Yes the material thing is a bit of a misnomer the guy has 30 days credit at least. What is really going on is risk sharing. Having had some unfortunate experiences recently trying to support local businesses and with very mediocre results and in some cases very poor workmanship.  I have also had a brilliant one, replacing a flat roof and upgrading it to current building regs, fantastic team, first rate workmanship and amazing guys. They still required a deposit.
Get a bicycle. You will never regret it, if you live- Mark Twain

Aunt Maud

  • Le Flâneur.
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #59 on: May 13, 2015, 09:32:48 pm »
I always took a deposit.

No deposit = No work done. I'm not a bank and don't give interest free, unsecured credit to homeowners who ask for work done.


Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #60 on: May 13, 2015, 09:38:38 pm »

My roofer forgot to replace a fascia board last year then tried to claim that it wasn't part of the job. 

I think this guy forgot he was doing the rear elevation at all, which is what's happening here. On the first day, the scaffolders turned up and only did three elevations. When Rob (who thankfully was here keeping an eye) noticed that they'd not done the rear and questioned this, they claimed they'd only been told to do three. A call to the bossman fixed this as far as the rest of the rear elevation went, but the extra section still wasn't scaffolded in any way.

Why he thinks we'd pay all this money to do only three bloody elevations of the house and leave one in cracked concrete, I don't know..

Aunt Maud, I was actually more than willing to give him a reasonable deposit had he asked, as I've done for previous works (eg the blessed boiler works, obviously done by a different guy) and had asked him about this previously, but hadn't received any bank details etc, and wasn't exactly about to chase him up on it.

Aunt Maud

  • Le Flâneur.
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #61 on: May 14, 2015, 05:44:32 am »
It sounds like you're having a horrid experience all round with this one.

If it says the on quote that he's going to render the house, but not the new extension, then that's what he has agreed to do if you accepted his price based on his quote.

If he's put an area down i.e..230 square meters of render blah, blah....you need to get your tape measure out and measure up.

If you refuse to pay him any money when he's 40% into the job, he'll start to wonder if he's going to get paid at all. If he's got loads more work on he may stop at yours and take his tools elsewhere.

Obviously you want to make sure that A) He doesn't leave unfinished or an elevation unfinished and B) You pay him a lot less than the value of the work done including the scaffold until he is finished, otherwise he could just say adios and not loose out.

I've no idea how much the quote is, obviously, but you need to ensure that if he goes, he's going to loose out on a fair chunk of money and not just a couple of hundred quid.

When he's done with an elevation, you should eye it up, but not in front of him and it should be flat up, across and diagonally. Do it when he's not there and if it's not flat, do it in front of him again. This is all provided that your brickwork was flat in the first place and it probably is, unless you've got a structural problem.

Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #62 on: May 14, 2015, 06:25:48 am »
I always took a deposit.

No deposit = No work done. I'm not a bank and don't give interest free, unsecured credit to homeowners who ask for work done.

How long did you get to settle account(s) with your supplier(s)?

Aunt Maud

  • Le Flâneur.
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #63 on: May 14, 2015, 09:45:10 am »
I always took a deposit.

No deposit = No work done. I'm not a bank and don't give interest free, unsecured credit to homeowners who ask for work done.

How long did you get to settle account(s) with your supplier(s)?

That doesn't matter and you probably don't run a business, if you need to ask that question.

Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #64 on: May 14, 2015, 10:19:09 am »
Well, I do run a business actually though not a building company but I have relatives in the trade.  I happen to know that suppliers give typically up to 30 days 'free credit' as a billing period and up to 30 days to settle.  That would amount to up to sixty days before you need to have settled your bill.

Any builder who needs to have his suppliers bills met immediately is either in the mire or has no credit with his suppliers - both situations would be of concern to me.

I appreciate that on some very long jobs the builder might look for stage payments but these would have to be dependent upon progress and the builder actually delivering at each stage.

Aunt Maud

  • Le Flâneur.
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #65 on: May 14, 2015, 12:04:30 pm »
Polar Bear,

I'm not going to get drawn into an online argument with you over how I chose to run my business, or your bad experiences with the local builders.

You'll have to find someone else to do that with, I'm afraid.

tiermat

  • According to Jane, I'm a Unisex SpaceAdmin
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #66 on: May 14, 2015, 12:51:25 pm »
From the times we have had to have non-family trades in to do work I would say 10% is being a bit tight.

We always operated on, and agreed with the trades, between 25 and 30%.  This worked in our favour when we got the shower room completely re-modelled in Norathampton, as the guy doing the work did a whole list of things which we were not happy about, the least of which was using the skips that we were paying for to dump the rubbish from his gang's other jobs.  When we witheld 25% of the final bill (IIRC about £2.5K) due to the fit and finish not being done to an agreed standard he failed to return, at times agreed, to finish the job and we eventually terminated the engagement and got someone else to finish the work.  This was exceedingly silly as most of the finish work was small, cosmetic jobs(which costs us ~£500 to get done)!
I feel like Captain Kirk, on a brand new planet every day, a little like King Kong on top of the Empire State

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #67 on: May 14, 2015, 07:46:14 pm »
Deposits aren't just for materials. I imagine that it's a not good thing if you're self-employed to find out on 5pm Friday evening that the customer has decided the two week job you had scheduled for Monday is no longer required.

We've always agreed to pay in installments (for the refurb here we paid on completion of each room) and held back 10%.

As for the case in question, read the estimate carefully and see doing all the render is a reasonable interpretation. If so, point it out. If not, then offer to meet them halfway. They'll be set up anyways so the extra costs will be marginal and at the end of the day a happy customer is future business.
!nataS pihsroW

Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #68 on: May 14, 2015, 08:59:55 pm »
Polar Bear,

I'm not going to get drawn into an online argument with you over how I chose to run my business, or your bad experiences with the local builders.

You'll have to find someone else to do that with, I'm afraid.

Just as well because it is of no concern of mine how you run your business.   I am concerned that the OP gets the advice that she needs.   

I have just worked out that to date on our property renovation we have had seven separate tradesmen or firms in in the past 14 months.   Only one took a stage payment* and all did not receive the balance until completion.  Four of those tradesmen will be back for further works this year.   Seems to be a system which works for all concerned. :thumbsup: 

* He did works then had to wait for a further job to be completed before he could install.   As his wait was for an unspecified time I offered to pay in stages which he accepted.

Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #69 on: May 14, 2015, 09:38:23 pm »
This is a pretty big job (by our standards, anyway!) We're talking five figures. If he walked away now, he'd lose a lot of money and we're not talking hundreds. He's had scaffolders do the scaffold, then between two and four men working two days hacking off the render, and then three of them putting on the scratch coat over the course of a day, and loads of materials delivered. This is why I would happily give him an interim payment, subject to knowing he's actually going to do the job we asked him to do.

There has now been a full and frank exchange of views both over email and over the phone. He never provided any square metre measurement on his written quote, which would have avoided this. It simply says 'remove and re-render all four elevations excluding rear extension' and I, perhaps naively, thought that was clear enough, considering I had had a very clear conversation with him regarding the difficult to reach part when he came to quote, and made it very clear I wanted that to be included - I literally pointed it out.

After much arguing, and some polite but very firm suggestion that he re-examine his memory of the matter (I would genuinely give him the benefit of the doubt if my memory of this were anything but crystal clear) he has agreed to include the patch of wall as part of the quote if we make the interim payment. He has confirmed this in writing, spelling it all out somewhat more clearly than the original quote did.

Re interim payments, I have made them before, I think it probably depends on the kind of work that's being done. When I had my central heating done in my old flat, the engineer had me pay a supplier directly to buy the rads etc which I thought was fair enough. The problem here is the dispute, which we wanted to resolve first. What we wanted to avoid was paying him enough to make it worth him cutting his losses and buggering off. Unfortunately that might have had the unfortunate side effect of making him panic that he's going to get paid at all - but again - if he thought back to his original conversation with me he might remember I asked him several questions about payment of deposits etc, and was generally very willing - he just never asked. I think he's just a rather disorganised and could do with writing things down a bit more, personally. He took ages to reply to emails, and I waited over two weeks for his written quote (when he knew I was waiting on it for negotiation purposes with our vendor). While this might have been a warning sign, he has a bit of a monopoly on this kind of work in this area (there aren't that many companies working in lime round here) so I didn't exactly have a lot of choice of other builders...

I do suspect that what happened is he's forgotten about that difficult bit. They're a busy company. We just can't really afford to pay for their mistake without going into more debt, which is why we had to be firm too.

fboab

  • It's a fecking serious business, riding a bike
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #70 on: May 14, 2015, 10:27:51 pm »
Well, I do run a business actually though not a building company but I have relatives in the trade.  I happen to know that suppliers give typically up to 30 days 'free credit' as a billing period and up to 30 days to settle.  That would amount to up to sixty days before you need to have settled your bill.

Any builder who needs to have his suppliers bills met immediately is either in the mire or has no credit with his suppliers - both situations would be of concern to me.

I appreciate that on some very long jobs the builder might look for stage payments but these would have to be dependent upon progress and the builder actually delivering at each stage.
His workforce are weekly paid even if his suppliers aren't. And if he doesn't pay them on time they won't turn up on Monday.
The most valuable asset of a service company is its staff. Those are the skills they're selling - any fool can buy lime render, it's sticking on the wall that NSTN is paying him for, and the men doing that need paying long before 60 days are up.
TSS is not Total Sex Score, Chris!

Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #71 on: May 14, 2015, 11:32:32 pm »
Well, I do run a business actually though not a building company but I have relatives in the trade.  I happen to know that suppliers give typically up to 30 days 'free credit' as a billing period and up to 30 days to settle.  That would amount to up to sixty days before you need to have settled your bill.

Any builder who needs to have his suppliers bills met immediately is either in the mire or has no credit with his suppliers - both situations would be of concern to me.

I appreciate that on some very long jobs the builder might look for stage payments but these would have to be dependent upon progress and the builder actually delivering at each stage.
His workforce are weekly paid even if his suppliers aren't. And if he doesn't pay them on time they won't turn up on Monday.
The most valuable asset of a service company is its staff. Those are the skills they're selling - any fool can buy lime render, it's sticking on the wall that NSTN is paying him for, and the men doing that need paying long before 60 days are up.

And furthermore it's *entirely* irrelevant to the customer what his payment terms with the supplier are. Sainsbury's or Asda want me to pay them immediately despite the fact they keep the farmers' money for three months or more; DFS is happy to wait three years.

(And to reinforce your point, for a job like this the materials cost is minimal anyway - it's the wages cost that will really stack up.)

Aunt Maud

  • Le Flâneur.
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #72 on: May 15, 2015, 04:15:07 am »
Excellent news that he's seen the light and things are going in the right direction. It'll soon be over and it won't seem so bad after all, plus your house'll look swanky too.

When builders get busy, quotes get put in a pile, the person who shouts loudest gets their quote quickest. If he has a regular stream of clients that he knows will be happy and pay straight away, he'll go to them first and if your a new client and he's got a massive pile of work, you'll be lucky to get a look in.

It takes an age for a builder to build a good reputation, but only 5 minutes to loose it, so he'll be wanting to keep things going along swimmingly and if you're happy you should pay him what you owe him quickly, if your not you should tell him first and not your neighbour. If it looks like you might need more work of this type done, you'd be well placed if you remain friends at the end of the day.

As a general note, although by the sounds of it it won't involve you.

Try to avoid getting on the list of bad payers that floats around Travis Perkins and other builders merchants, word gets out and most builders will know about it very quickly and you'll end up with "Desperate Dan" next time.

tiermat

  • According to Jane, I'm a Unisex SpaceAdmin
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #73 on: May 15, 2015, 08:28:51 am »
Without wandering too far off topic, jsabine, DFS don't wait three years, they have their money before you even get your sofa, as it's all done through finance companies.

I see your point, though, just gave a bad example :)
I feel like Captain Kirk, on a brand new planet every day, a little like King Kong on top of the Empire State

ian

  • fatuously disingenuous
    • The Suburban Survival Guide
Re: Need access to neighbour's land to maintain gable wall.
« Reply #74 on: May 15, 2015, 08:46:08 am »
Hold on. There's a house in Croydonia that might end up looking nice. Stop right there. I hope you're going to put a discarded fridge out front. There are some standards.
!nataS pihsroW