Loft Conversion - Sent round a bunch of amateurs!

GK10

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Hi Guys,

So recently we hired a local well known (British) loft conversion company to do our loft conversion. Guy kept delaying, and then said he works with someone else as well who will be doing the loft. Sent another English builder round who said he was going on "holiday" but his builders will be starting today.

Two guys have started who can barely speak English, don't look exactly like reputable builders, nor do they look like they have any expertise. Already sent a massive slab of concrete into next doors garden which could have either damaged something or hit one of the kids, looked out the window a few times, caught one urinating in between our garages and the other sitting on the wall out the front. Asked us if we have a chisel and have now gone for a walk to the shop to get one.

Anyone know anything about the rules? Do builders need to have certain qualifications/expertise, proper training to do lofts?

Looks like we've been sub-contracted without permission, loft company makes a good profit whilst paying peanuts to these guys.

Any advice?
 
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How much 'work' have they done so far?

This sounds like it'll end in tears.
 

Rob77

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Do you have a contract with the builder? What does it say about the period for the works, assignment, safety and supervision? Aren't they in breach of all four already?

If you do have a contract, you might want to ensure it doesn't provide for adjudication or you could find that after problems with the job you'll have problems over payment.
 

Rob77

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And, if you have no formal contract, could it be construed that you are employing illegal workers and potentially liable for a fine up to £20,000 per person?
 

Little Lofty

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As mentioned, it sounds like it will end in tears. I've put right a few bodged lofts, it's really quite a simple process to convert a loft but its amazing how so many people get it so wrong.
You need a team with all the right skills and tools, these lot sound like the complete idiots. Kick them off the job and wait for the boss to come back.
 

Mike Walker

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A further point which I would urge you to consider very seriously based upon your original post. Is there a design and accompanying drawings for these works and if yes who prepared them? Have they been formally approved by the Local Authority? If no the you should stop the works immediately. If yes you as The Client have a responsibility under the recently amended CDM Regulations I believe. You should seek advice on this from a suitably qualified advisor.
There are, sadly, many cases where works such as yours go badly wrong due to similar circumstances to those you describe.
PM if you need further advice.
 

developer

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Is there a dormer going in and, if so, have they started that bit yet?

Once they "break out" and your property is no longer water tight, you'll have a bigger problem to worry about, if they are incompetent.
 
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Meldrew2

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Take plenty of photos. If things go to Court, they will be invaluable.
 
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GK10

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Thanks.

I'm living at home but it's my parents (our) house. I'll tell my dad.

There is a house down the road that used the same company (Apex Loft Conversions) and apparently a lot of the houses around town have used this company, however like I mentioned in my original post, it appears the guy that came round from that company has outsourced the work to these lot. We'll check with the house a few doors down to see who actually did there work.

Went for a spanner, still doesn't look like they've been back. They haven't done too much, looks like they've just started taking the tiles off, however there has been a lot of crashing and banging, including as I mentioned a big chunk of concrete falling just in front of the neighbours back door.

Yep, designs and permission all been done properly via a qualified surveyor.

I guess the first step is to call the company who we employed to do the work.
 

MWCLS

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Thanks.

I'm living at home but it's my parents (our) house. I'll tell my dad.

There is a house down the road that used the same company (Apex Loft Conversions) and apparently a lot of the houses around town have used this company, however like I mentioned in my original post, it appears the guy that came round from that company has outsourced the work to these lot. We'll check with the house a few doors down to see who actually did there work.

Went for a spanner, still doesn't look like they've been back. They haven't done too much, looks like they've just started taking the tiles off, however there has been a lot of crashing and banging, including as I mentioned a big chunk of concrete falling just in front of the neighbours back door.

Yep, designs and permission all been done properly via a qualified surveyor.

I guess the first step is to call the company who we employed to do the work.

I'd run them!
 

developer

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looks like they've just started taking the tiles off,
I guess the first step is to call the company who we employed to do the work.

I'd suggest sooner rather than later - it's Friday afternoon :crazy:.
 
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GK10

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Well, it gets even better.

Dad just got home, said neighbours checked there CCTV and the concrete didn't just fall into the back garden, it hit their conservatory, broke a tile and then landed. Great!
 

d w124

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I wouldn't let them two back in the house
 

alzieboy

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As suggested above, get rid of that pair asap , before you require the services of Dominic Littlewood & Melinda Messenger .
 

Mike Walker

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Approved or not you or your Father need to stop them right now and preferably by letter and email with a full record of what has taken place today. Trust that your property insurers have already been advised of these works bearing in mind removal of roof tiles and weather forecast tonight/tomorrow.
Not trying to be alarmist but time to take action is now before something serious happens.
Good luck.
 

marty359

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Like my old boss used to say "give them a DCM......don't come Monday"

Have you spoken to the company and expressed your concerns?
 

markjay

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Also... what proportion - if any - of the agreed cost have you already paid?

My experience is that builders are far more attentive before payment is made than after.
 

B-BOY

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Wouldn't be too concerned about the CDM Regs, but more the Health & Safety Act at Work. Inform the main contact to remove these two monkeys and get proper experienced people in otherwise you'll have to inform the Health and Safety Executive ( type in Google, follow the link and report them).

Not sure how much of the CDM 2015 covers domestic work?
 

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