Jump to content

Tradie/ Acquaintance conundrum
Please help!


  • Please log in to reply
184 replies to this topic

#1 Jellyblush

Posted 11 January 2013 - 12:46 PM

Hi everyone. I'm in a sensitive situation where I really don't know what to do. All advice appreciated. Want to do the right thing but something smells fishy and don't want to be taken advantage of.

In December 2010 I decided I needed two doors replaced in my home, due to dog scratching them.

Got a quote from Doors Plus which came in at just under $2k, which I thought was a bit steep.

Friend mentions they have a friend (acquantaince of mine) who is a carpenter and builds new houses, who can do it for much less, if I just buy the doors.

It is agreed I purchase two doors, and they fit them, charging me a half days work to do so.

This occurs in March 2011.

I ask them and ask them and ask them to invoice me; I know the price of the doors ($700) and have budgeted and put aside $1200 for the job thinking that should be plenty.

They don't invoice me.  I keep chasing. I WANTED to pay, as I had the $$ at that time.  Eventually, in December 2011, the guy says "don't worry about it".  Well, I still want to worry about it! I want to pay!

Today - almost 2 years after the job was done, I get an invoice for $2500. It just says 'Home renovations as per quote"
Well there was no quote, ever, and it is so much higher than we discussed
I also think it should be itemised - doors and labour, but it isn't.
It says immediate terms too, but I will have to pay in installments now because they money I set aside is long gone.


What do you think I should do? What I'd like to do is:
a) request an itemised invoice for doors and half days labour
b) discuss the expectation that it was going to be about half the invoiced amount
c) say I need a payment plan due to it taking so long to invoice me

Is the above reasonable? I'm nervous as I think it will cause ructions with the mutual friends. So wish Id just gone with a professional at the time sad.gif

#2 Acidulous Osprey

Posted 11 January 2013 - 12:50 PM

What they have done is so unreasonable that surely your friend will see it is wrong.

The lack of a supplied written quote is a huge red flag and the billing almost 2 years later is also bizarre.

#3 causeway

Posted 11 January 2013 - 01:16 PM

Surely they are taking the p*ss!

I'd be calling them and querying it! There is no way I'd be paying as per invoice. It took them 2 years to invoice, you could take 2 years to pay!

#4 TotesFeral

Posted 11 January 2013 - 01:20 PM

The fact that you didn't get a quote is worrying, if he took it further you might not have a leg to stand on as there is a big legal difference between an estimate of costs and an actual quote.
But I'm not sure where he would stand seeing as it has taken him over 2 years to invoice you.

What state are you in OP? Can you contact Fair Trading or your states equivalent.

#5 Poss and Soss

Posted 11 January 2013 - 01:21 PM

I would ask for a 'copy' of the quote they say they provided, and also an itemised receipt.

Given it reads that you paid for the doors it looks like they've charged you $2.5k for 4 hours work? $625 an hour? Not bad if they can get it wink.gif

I certainly would not be paying it! I would pay something but not that much!

#6 TopsyTurvy

Posted 11 January 2013 - 01:27 PM

I would go back and tell them they have sent you the wrong bill.

Put it in writing.

Dear XYZ tradie,

I recieved your invoice number ABC, which you have sent to me in error.

Please send the correct invoice for EFG amount as originally verbally quoted which was for a door instillation only.

Thankyou and kind regards,

Jelly

#7 lizzzard

Posted 11 January 2013 - 01:31 PM

QUOTE (TopsyTurvy @ 11/01/2013, 02:27 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I would go back and tell them they have sent you the wrong bill.

Put it in writing.

Dear XYZ tradie,

I recieved your invoice number ABC, which you have sent to me in error.

Please send the correct invoice for EFG amount as originally verbally quoted which was for a door instillation only.

Thankyou and kind regards,

Jelly


This. I would assume benign intent in the first instance - it may have been a genune error... See how they respond to the above original.gif

#8 TotesFeral

Posted 11 January 2013 - 01:38 PM

QUOTE (FluffyOscar @ 11/01/2013, 02:33 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hmm, what doors?

Seriously, if there is no quote and no contract and no invoice for the doors purchased, the "friend" has a hope in hell they'll get paid.

Do not pay OP.


But contracts can be oral. If he has anyway at all to prove that he did the work then the OP will need to pay. The OP didn't obtain a written quote so technically all she got was an estimate which is not legally binding so yeah he can then charge her more.


#9 Lifesgood

Posted 11 January 2013 - 01:52 PM

QUOTE (TopsyTurvy @ 11/01/2013, 02:27 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I would go back and tell them they have sent you the wrong bill.

Put it in writing.

Dear XYZ tradie,

I recieved your invoice number ABC, which you have sent to me in error.

Please send the correct invoice for EFG amount as originally verbally quoted which was for a door instillation only.

Thankyou and kind regards,

Jelly


This is a good idea because it gives the tradie an 'out' without losing face and it gives you the opportunity to state the 'implied price' that formed what was obviously an oral quote. Also include a note about it being two years ago.

Stand your ground OP, there is no written quote, pay what you were expecting to pay, no more.

#10 Phascogale

Posted 11 January 2013 - 02:09 PM

Did you purchase the door separately or did they purchase you your behalf - this part isn't clear in your OP?

I like the above letter that TopsyTurvey wrote.  It does give them an out.

It's worth calling Fair Trading or equivalent in your state.  They will be able to step you through what you need to do.

I would hope that the company would provide an itemised bill.  There may be a mark up on the doors if you didn't buy them yourselves but I would imagine you have a good case if it's just for 4 hours worth of work to hang a couple of doors (the actual work I could see coming to about $400 ie 2 people x $50/hr each as it was half a day).

Sounds like they are making things up two years later as they can't remember what they did.  There's probably been an audit and they are $700 short for the doors or something and thought home renovations would cover it.  The above letter would address this as it would tell them what it was for.

#11 Jellyblush

Posted 12 January 2013 - 09:32 AM

Hi, thanks very much you guys.

To clarify - the doors were purchased by him, at wholesale price for me, so he said.

Appreciate your answers. Need to ring him now and am so nervous.

#12 LambChop

Posted 12 January 2013 - 09:37 AM

"Please send the correct invoice for EFG amount as originally verbally quoted which was for $700 for the doors and 4 hours work for door installation."

#13 Kickingitcountry

Posted 12 January 2013 - 09:52 AM

QUOTE (LambChop @ 12/01/2013, 07:37 AM)
15230825[/url]']
"Please send the correct invoice for EFG amount as originally verbally quoted which was for $700 for the doors and 4 hours work for door installation."


I would do this. I would also have a word with the friend that recommended him. Not to have a go just to let them know that this tradie has done this so they stop recommending him to other friends.

#14 KeisarynjaDoe2010

Posted 12 January 2013 - 10:06 AM

QUOTE (LambChop @ 12/01/2013, 10:37 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
"Please send the correct invoice for EFG amount as originally verbally quoted which was for $700 for the doors and 4 hours work for door installation."


I agree with this. We run our own electrical business and wouldn't dare invoice someone 2 years after the fact, especially for that much!!

Good luck. He's WAY in the wrong. And yes, I'd speak to your friend too.

#15 Jellyblush

Posted 12 January 2013 - 11:35 AM

Thanks very much everyone, I will do this. Hate this sort of stuff so much.

The $2.5k invoice he's sent also says 'and materials costs' but materials costs were paid by me at the time - we went to Bunnings together and I bought everything he needed (bar the doors) and paid by credit card so have it documented.

Do you think it would be worth me writing to consumer affairs just to let them know what has happened and ask advice?


#16 kpingitquiet

Posted 12 January 2013 - 11:42 AM

Is it possible that someone bought the business? Or they changed accountants? It sounds to me like someone went through old notes/invoices and is trying to settle outstanding bills without knowing the deals you made, and quoting current market prices.

I will say door stuff is expensive. My husband literally went and fixed a kickplate on a firedoor, took about 15 mins. The company quoted $400 for work+materials. wacko.gif

#17 Lifesgood

Posted 12 January 2013 - 11:46 AM

QUOTE (Jellyblush @ 12/01/2013, 12:35 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Thanks very much everyone, I will do this. Hate this sort of stuff so much.

The $2.5k invoice he's sent also says 'and materials costs' but materials costs were paid by me at the time - we went to Bunnings together and I bought everything he needed (bar the doors) and paid by credit card so have it documented.

Do you think it would be worth me writing to consumer affairs just to let them know what has happened and ask advice?

I would deal direct with the tradie first and see how you go. Definitely put it in writing though so you have a record of what is going on. Point out the errors he has made and restate YOUR understanding and expectations of the transaction.

Most people back down if you call them on their "mistake".

Please let us know how you go.

#18 Jellyblush

Posted 12 January 2013 - 12:04 PM

Thanks heaps, just tried to call him but it went to messagebank.
I left a message stating that I wished to discuss the invoice as an error had been made.

No change in company - he is a sole trader, the invoice was issued by his dad who does his account. I know he hasn't worked for about 4 months due to travelling so think he is just trying to call in cash.

Edited by Jellyblush, 12 January 2013 - 01:15 PM.


#19 Jellyblush

Posted 12 January 2013 - 02:30 PM

Okay everyone, I have composed this to send based on previous excellent advice in this thread:

Hi XXX,

I received your invoice number XXXXXX, which you have sent to me in error.

In January 2011, we made a verbal agreement for the supply at wholesale price and fit at discounted rates of two corinthian external doors at $700. You advised that labour would not be charged at greater than one half days work of 4 hours. All materials except the doors were paid for by me by credit card. We agreed that work would commence 'when you had time' due to the discounted nature of the work, and that doors would be hung but would not be finished or painted.

This work was completed as described above on 25/03/2011.  I requested an invoice in March 2011, April 2011, May 2011 and December 2011, however none was supplied, and I was verbally advised by you "not to worry about it", which, alongside the fact that you had not invoiced, I took to mean that you did not intend to seek payment.  I then received the attached incorrect invoice XXXXX on 11 January 2013.

Please send the correct, dated, invoice for supply at wholesale price (with receipts) and fit at discounted rates of two corinthian external doors, as per our verbal agreement.

Thankyou and kind regards,

Jelly

#20 JustBeige

Posted 12 January 2013 - 02:50 PM

I like the letter. The only other thing I would do is try and get a couple of quotes on how much just hanging a door would cost for labour.  That way if he comes back to you, you can say "i spoke to consumer affairs / building industry body, and they advised a basic hourly rate is....."

Just so you have a clue on how much its suppsed to cost.

#21 Jellyblush

Posted 12 January 2013 - 03:01 PM

double post

Edited by Jellyblush, 12 January 2013 - 03:01 PM.


#22 Jellyblush

Posted 12 January 2013 - 03:01 PM

Oh, great idea, thanks Justbeige.

I have also sourced my doors online, retail, including delivery, this is them:

http://www.masters.com.au/masters/navigati...uct_details.jsp

So the $700 originally agreed for two, wholesale, seems more or less right.

#23 Jellyblush

Posted 12 January 2013 - 03:01 PM

argh double post, I need to calm down!

Edited by Jellyblush, 12 January 2013 - 03:02 PM.


#24 JustBeige

Posted 12 January 2013 - 03:06 PM

Thats good. You can use that to show that you know how much they should cost if you need to.

I agree with your thought on the dad/him trying to get some money off you and just charging at todays costs.

Definitely tell your friend to not recommend him any more. It looks bad for them.

Oh, I would also make sure you register post the letter. I would do that on top of emailing it - get a return recpt too if you do it that way

Edited by JustBeige, 12 January 2013 - 06:37 PM.


#25 jessie123

Posted 12 January 2013 - 04:06 PM

He has to be trying it on. Who sends a bill 2 years later.

I  wonder if he has money problems  - sounds like he has suddenly billed you as he needs $$.




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

The day my daughter almost drowned

We had six adults standing there, so I felt like I could relax a bit. After all, what could go wrong with so much supervision?

Sydney siege survivor names baby after victim Katrina Dawson

A Sydney barrister who survived the Lindt cafe siege has named her newborn daughter after her best friend who died in the tragedy.

Banishing bloat

How to avoid a bloated tummy

Here are some foods to eat in order to escape feeling ghastly and gassy.

The great new picture book for anxious kids

My son is a worrier by nature. I learnt long ago that it was completely pointless to say to him "Don't worry about it!".

Budget stripped more than $15b from families

The combined impact of the two budgets for low and middle income people was "devastating", new analysis by the Australian Council of Social Service shows.

Pregnant women urged to get flu shots

As the winter chill starts to arrive, NSW Health is urging pregnant women to get their flu shots.

65-year-old gives birth to quadruplets

A 65-year-old German woman, who already has 13 children, has given birth to quadruplets.

What you need to know about pregnancy and health insurance

It's not just waiting periods that couples need to consider - there are other factors to consider when thinking about health insurance.

Yummy mummy

Nicole Trunfio breastfeeds baby on Elle magazine cover

Australian model Nicole Trunfio has taken the concept of multitasking to a fashionable new level for Elle Australia.

Warnings after baby girl died while sleeping in bouncer

Parents have been warned about the dangers of letting babies sleep in bouncers and swings following the death of a three-month-old girl.

Coping with fatigue as a parent

Sleep deprivation is a real hazard of caring for a baby. But there are ways to manage the challenges of fatigue better.

A very 21st century issue: parents, parks and smart phones

It's not all the parents, and it's not all the time, but there is often at least one doing it. And sometimes, that 'one' is me.

Appliances

Faulty washing machines linked to house fires

More than 80,000 faulty Samsung washing machines pose a fire threat in homes throughout Australia despite a nationwide recall of the machines.

'I had a lotus birth and I loved it'

Lotus birthing is not all that common, but for a number of women it feels like the most natural thing to do.

7 things you might not know about postnatal depression

Despite its widespread nature, there is still a great amount of mystery surrounding PND - and it's important to try unravelling as much of that as we can.

Is your family's car part of the world's biggest safety recall?

More than 50 million vehicles recalled for potentially lethal airbag fault - is your car affected?

Why drinking water can be deadly for babies

H2O is one of the necessities of life, but for babies a seemingly harmless amount of water can be fatal.

Mother-in-law faceplants during proposal

He had it all planned: a romantic proposal on a windswept beach. The whole family would be there so they'd all be able to celebrate the joyous moment together.

A preschooler suddenly goes mute - and it's not just shyness

When our son stopped talking, our sense of loss was painful and acute.

The mums who ask for a 'wife bonus'

They run their homes like domestic CEOs and work tirelessly to improve their family's social standing. And now, according to a new book, they want an annual perk from their husbands.

Woman shares photo of dimple on breast to warn others of cancer risk

A widely-shared Facebook photograph of a British woman's breast has raised awareness of a more subtle breast cancer symptom.

Starting a family despite a low sperm count

"I'd never really failed a test - how could I fail this particularly manly test?"

It's official: we must better protect our kids from toxic lead exposure

New guidelines have been released, aimed at reducing children's harmful exposure to lead. But they still don't go far enough.

Trouble-shooting toddler social skills

Chances are your toddler's behaviour is all completely normal - but here's how to tackle some common social problems.

Helping your first-born welcome a sibling

We did sigh with joy at the arrival of a royal princess - but, mostly, we sighed with pity at the sight of Prince George being taken to meet her.

Farewell, daytime nap

I've been in denial and I'm not too proud to beg, but it appears I must accept the fact that you have gone. I need to let you go.

The identical triplets who are one in 50 million

The father of identical triplets born in a Texas hospital says his three daughters, including conjoined twins, are "a miracle" sent by God.

Seven questions you should be asking about your health cover

If the last time you assessed your health cover was five years ago, there?s a chance it may no longer suit your needs. To ensure it?s still right for your family, click here for seven questions to ask.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

How to use gas effectively in labour

Many women in labour don't use gas effectively and suffer more side effects than benefits. Here's how to get the most out of this pain relief option.

'He has gastro but that's okay, right?': sick kid etiquette

We cannot place all children who are sick in a bubble till they recover, but we can give other parents a choice about exposing their kids to them.

Welcome to Winter

Now that the colder months are here, Essential Baby as all the information you need for staying healthy and happy during the chilly season.

Ada Nicodemou: 'I can never be completely happy again'

Home and Away actress Ada Nicodemou has opened up about the loss of her stillborn baby.

10 things to consider when you're thinking about trying for a baby

Before you start tracking your menstrual cycle and reading up on the best positions to get pregnant, there are a few other things you may want to consider.

How special surgery and IVF can create a post-vasectomy baby

Cricket legend Glenn McGrath and his second wife Sara are expecting their first child together, thanks to IVF and a delicate surgical sperm retrieval process that helped the couple to conceive.

Belle Gibson's mother 'disgusted and embarrassed'

The mother of disgraced wellness blogger Belle Gibson has accused her daughter of lying about her childhood in an attempt to garner public sympathy.

Doctor's mobile phone 'left inside c-section mum'

A new mum claims a doctor left his mobile phone inside her after delivering her baby via caesarean section.

I'm a mum and I'm following my dreams

I want my kids to know that no matter what happens in life, you can still be who it is that you've always wanted to be.

Those first daycare days

I had this innate 'mum' moment the other day.

'If one person had listened, my life would have been so different'

Katherine's father will die in prison for the horrifying sexual abuse of his daughter. Yet she is the one with the true life sentence.

This new plan undermines breastfeeding and baby health at everyone's expense

Mothers, babies, the health system and the wider society are going to pay the price of this new budget.

Couple to celebrate terminally ill baby's birthday in unique way

Baby Jai Bishop has lived at Starship Hospital for the past seven months, with his parents flying back and forth from Hokitika, 1100km away, to be by his side.

Life On Mars

It's men who need 'retraining', not women

We are all responsible for our own behaviour. Telling victims to harden up is wrong.

Baby Gammy's dad tries to claim charity money

The biological father of baby Gammy has reportedly tried to access charity money raised for the little boy's medical costs.

Where are the childcare places?

It?s all very well to encourage women to work if they choose to, but how can the measures lead to increased workforce participation when women are once again left holding the baby?

The pain of not having babies and not knowing why

After seven years of wishing, hoping, crying, punching pillows and shouting "why me?!", the end result is more than I ever thought possible.

Getting your family finances in order

Whether you're after a new car for a growing family, a bigger house, or are just fixing up your finances, here are the basics on borrowing.

Mum shares graphic selfie to warn against tanning

A mum has shared a graphic photo of her skin cancer treatment as a warning to others.

Does parenthood make us happier?

We can certainly gain higher levels of happiness when we become parents, but the trick is to not get overwhelmed by the pressures of raising our kids.

No, having a dog is not like having a human child

It's obvious these people dote on their pets, but they're barking up the wrong tree.

 

Top baby names

Baby Names

The numbers are in and we can now bring you the 2014 top baby name list for Australia.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.