Unfortunately, the sad statistic is that, the majority of building projects exceed the amount of time and / or money which was agreed at the contract, or initial agreement stage. If this has happened to you, do not feel disheartened, or embarrassed – you are not alone!
In our experience with cowboy builders, a lot of them are extremely skilled at gaining your trust, and then unfortunately abusing this trust. Time and time again, we have come across scenarios where the homeowner has paid out, in some instances extremely large sums, but the value of the actual works, carried out by the cowboy builder, is significantly below the amount paid to him. In these instances we can help you, by preparing a Chartered Quantity Surveyors report, to prove to all parties, what the actual value of the works is.
Other construction problems you may encounter, from a lot of rogue or cowboy builders, (who are fortunately not representative of the majority of builders), are due to cash constraints, or they start numerous building projects (running in parallel), and then run into difficulties due to: cash-flow problems, other construction difficulties, and the demands of other jobs. This however is: unacceptable, if it impacts your project. It represents poor practice, and you should be firm in only paying for work that has been carried out correctly.
Let us be clear on this, do not pay the builder more than the value of the works completed ~100% to your satisfaction. if you do so, there is no incentive for a cowboy builder to come back and rectify any defects and / or finish the works.
Unfortunately, as stated above, many cowboy builders are extremely skilled at ‘pulling the wool over your eyes’, by confusing you with technical terms, and assuring you that everything will be OK (just as long as you continue to make further payments to them). The best judge in these circumstances, is usually you – what does your gut instinct tell you? Do you feel that you are being taken advantage of? are your alarm bells ringing? If so, do not make any more payments to the builder, call us immediately, and we can review your position and give you advice over the phone.
In other cases, either due to time constraints or a lack of care and skill on behalf of your builder, this can result in building defects. This again is unacceptable and needs to be resolved to your satisfaction as soon as possible.
If you have a construction problem or complaint regarding a problem contractor / builder, or if you have a home dispute in London or the South East, for example with a cowboy builder who has carried out defective works and / or overcharged you, call us now for expert advice as to your rights and options for recovering against the builder.
If you have: serious building problems, if you believe you have overpaid, or if your project has gone badly wrong, we can assist you by valuing the current works – via a chartered quantity surveyors’ report, which would prove invaluable evidence in front of an adjudicator or judge. Essentially, you are paying for a qualified professional’s opinion on your dispute. Adjudicators and Judges, hold these reports in high regard, and they carry of lot of weight if the dispute proceeds to the next level. In a serious dispute with a cowboy builder, this is the best course of action for you – the adjudicator or judge will appreciate that you have taken a correct course of action, and a Chartered Quantity Surveyors report may be considered to be invaluable evidence, and most importantly, enough for you to win your case against your cowboy builder.
In the meantime, we can visit your property, compile evidence via measurements and photographs and review your paperwork. Do bear in mind though that if a legal action is commenced by your cowboy builder, it is likely that it will not be settled for 6 months plus. Therefore protect yourself now – by taking lots of photographs of the works, and if in doubt take more photos than you think you need, As the famous song goes: ‘a picture paints a thousand words’, and a photograph is invaluable evidence – which is hard to dispute.
In addition to our providing a Chartered Quantity Surveyors report, we can also help you by, taking control of the dispute and negotiating and settling with your builder on your behalf – keeping you informed at every step of the way. In the majority of cases, even the most adversarial of cowboy builders, will settle, if an independent and experienced professional is brought in. If however, the builder will not settle, our Chartered Quantity Surveyors’ report may be used by you as evidence in any court action you may wish to bring.
If (in the extremely unlikely event) that your cowboy builder commences legal action against you, you need the correct advice fast. Your options in this eventuality include: mediation, adjudication, arbitration or suing the builder (litigation). None of these is likely to be to your, or your builders, benefit. If however you call us during the dispute, we can review your case and offer advice as to how to deal with the builder and resolve the dispute. In a lot of occasions, a simple letter is enough for the builder to see the benefit of settling.
We have helped many homeowners with building problems, caused by cowboy builders, by negotiating on their behalf with the builder and agreeing settlements; which in the majority of cases, gives a higher satisfaction result to the homeowner, than formal dispute resolution proceedings such as: adjudication, arbitration or litigation.
In some instances, Jon has also acted as mediator in order to agree acceptable solutions to all parties.
Call Jon now, on the number below, to see how we can help you.