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designomoly 01-20-2014 10:32 AM

conflict over workmanship
Dear Group
My cousin is a carpenter/cabinet-maker. I commissioned him to make and install a wooden gate. Its a little garden gate made out of probably cheap planks and painted white. I don't know what wood was used.He pressed me to give him the job, its is not like I forced it on him.
I am very disappointed with the results. I told him that it should provide total privacy, but he has positioned the slats so that one can see through, it was supposed to overhang a step, but its ten centimetres shorter, so that one can see under it, and although he has oodles of space at one side, on the other he has trimmed down the last plank to be half the width, so that it looks odd and untidy, and the bottom of the slats are not even. One is higher than all the rest, and one is slanted. I don't know what to say to him as I don't wish to sour our relationship, I see him once a year perhaps. I also did not make a written agreement. I thought he had taken in what I said but he clearly has a bad memory, and low standards in terms of neatness and finishing.
He charged me R3000.00. In my country you could buy groceries for three months from that, the monthly rent for the property is R4500, as a comparison. Did he overcharge me and how do I complain about the general shabby workmanship without offending him too much. There is still half the money outstanding. I have a photograph of it.

Wuzzat? 01-20-2014 10:46 AM


Originally Posted by designomoly (Post 98848)
I don't wish to sour our relationship
He charged me R3000.00.

How long did it take him?
He might have an Antisocial Personality Disorder or he might be passive-aggressive or he might be taking revenge for something only known to him.
Consider the cost to be the tuition for learning a valuable lesson about people and about your cousin.
Make a drawing of what you want, the materials to be used and the surface finish and get at least five bids. In the event of an ambiguity the contract is interpreted against the person who wrote it.

nealtw 01-20-2014 04:57 PM

It looks like less than $300 US, that dosn't sound unreasonable, if the job was done right. He dosn't seem to be worried about the relationship never mind pride of workmanship.
What you have is a contract with a professional, you are the customer and he is a contractor and as such, friends and family should treat each other like any other contract holder. If you are not happy treat him just like you would with a stranger and ask him to make it right. You are still willing to pay up the balance when the gate is what you wanted.

oldognewtrick 01-20-2014 05:08 PM

I see things like that all the time. What a customer had envisioned and what a contractor interpeted are two different things. Did you have an agreed upon price prior to the project begining? And post the pic I'd love to see the gate.

CallMeVilla 01-20-2014 07:12 PM

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First mistake was not establishing a budget/cost in advance. Labor should never exceed two times materials for this kind of project ... especially for family.

Not sure what R3000 translates into but a typical garden gate costs under $100US ... I just re-did a gate, new cemented posts and all, repainted, better than the original ...

Austin 01-21-2014 08:26 AM

Is that reals or rupees? Need to do the conversion.

CallMeVilla 01-21-2014 01:25 PM

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Maybe it is roubles and you have a hot member in Moscow???

oldognewtrick 01-21-2014 01:29 PM

Villa, I think we scared him off, we'll maybe Neil did anyway.

nealtw 01-21-2014 04:36 PM


Originally Posted by Austin (Post 98892)
Is that reals or rupees? Need to do the conversion.

Try South Africa,

nealtw 01-21-2014 04:39 PM


Originally Posted by oldognewtrick (Post 98908)
Villa, I think we scared him off, we'll maybe Neil did anyway.

Likely someone banned him by mistake.

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