(I suggest a comfy chair and a cuppa, this is a big mess)
Last year we had three new windows installed in our bungalow.
In addition to this we also signed a contract (27th June 16) for a new composite front door to be fitted in our recessed porch which required raising of the internal step, removal of the old door and frame and replacing this with a door and top light on the front of the porch, not the recess.
The fitter had to leave and collect another piece of glass for one window as it was incorrect (a small triangular window) and this delayed the job which I had been assured wouldn't take long.
When completed the fitter said one window was too small so he would have to use additional trim.
It was one fitter, on his own, fitting three windows.
I was literally hovering around him as he was finishing off as I had to go to work and he had overrun.
On my return from work I properly looked at the windows.
Inside they looked fine but outside was shocking.
He had hacked off all the render on the return edge and stuck large plastic lengths of trim in it's place.
The trim protruded and there were massive chunks of sealant visible which was uneven and unsightly. As the trim was protruding you could see the yellow backing.
It looked like my 4 year old had finished it off.
I called the company and asked them to come and make it look better, I was told they never re render and always replace render with plastic trim.
I advised them I had not been informed of this and would not have gone ahead with the new windows if this was the case.
They asked for payment and I refused until they sent someone to look at it.
They sent some fitters round immediately to have a look.
In the meantime I looked at their website to see some lovely examples of new windows with the render still intact.
The guys that arrived looked at the trim and agreed it was a real mess, that the trim was far too wide and was protruding.
I asked them why the company removes the render and they informed me that they didn't as a matter of course and that customers should be consulted.
They advised that sometimes render has to be removed and they advise that they will replace it as best they can and that the customer would then be responsible for painting it.
I asked them to remove the plastic trim that was protruding and to re render it all which they did.
This looked much better at this point then the lumpy sealant and yellowy trim.
They told me the office was on the phone requesting payment and handed me a mobile phone so I could make payment over the phone. I said it looked better and paid in full.
On comparing my new render with my neighbours I noticed that instead of it having a square edge it was rounded of, was uneven and when it dried it looked horrible.
Painting it was not going to make it look any better.
I also noticed there were layers of trim around the windows which seemed unnecessary and I wondered if this was because the windows were too small. I complained again and over the phone and was assured the windows were the correct fit.
In the meantime the surveyor came round regarding the relocation of the front door in the porch.
He advised me that what was proposed would not fit and the door would have to open outwards.
I was not happy with this at all.
He also said the proposed top light would not fit either.
He ummed and ahhed a lot then said the door could open inwards and it would be packed out with trim, and gave me some paper to sign with a drawing showing a front door and built up step.
I signed then called the company to ask if the price would alter now we were not having a top light to be told there was no change in price.
I then contacted the manufacture of the company through live chat to ask their opinion to be told a top light would cost around £150.
I informed the company that I was not happy with what was now being proposed, I wanted a top light and if this was not practical I wanted the price reviewed and they emailed me to say as a gesture of good will they were happy to reduce the price by £50. i was not in agreement with this and made this quite clear.
They agreed to come back and look at things to reassure me, we arranged two appointments and they failed to show for both.
He then turned up really late (October), obviously not very happy and said again that we couldn't have a top light, that the door would not be packed out with trim it would be the full size of the opening.
I said this would be too big and wouldn't it catch on the internal wall edge, he said he didn't think so.
I was really unimpressed.
I felt that they really didn't give a toss now and that I may end up with a front door that wont even open as it would hit the internal wall edge.
At this point I asked for the £250 deposit to be refunded as I didn't want to go ahead with what was proposed.
They then said the door was waiting to be fitted so I would not be refunded.
I asked why a door had been manufactured when we were not in agreement and they said that I had signed a contract with them.
I informed them I had signed a contract for a door with a top light and they said that as I had signed the surveyors paperwork this was a contract.
Back to the windows, the company have recently said they would send an independent surveyor for his opinion of the windows (the fit and the appearance), I agreed to this but they sent the surveyor who had originally surveyed the windows, is this independent?
Furthermore, they will not provide a copy of the report, I have asked for it in writing several times to be told it is not their policy.
Am I entitled to see it?
They have said they are happy to come and remove more plastic trim and re render but they will not detail what trim will be removed. I have said they may remove too much or too little, what they do could be irreparable.
I have absolutely no faith in this company and do not want them to now mess about with my front door and porch as firstly I do not want what is proposed and secondly I am still unhappy about the windows. I really do not know where I stand legally.
my questions are:
Is my signature on the surveyors paperwork a new contract? (I have queried it every step of the way and I have evidence)
Can I get my £250 deposit back for the door, am I obliged to go ahead with having something I don't want fitted?
Can I insist on an independent surveyors report for the windows and am I entitled to see the report?
Thank you for taking the time to read this epic mess, I would really appreciate some guidance x