Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • ErolGirl
    • By ErolGirl 4th Feb 18, 8:45 PM
    • 40Posts
    • 22Thanks
    ErolGirl
    Being charged for work we never agreed to
    • #1
    • 4th Feb 18, 8:45 PM
    Being charged for work we never agreed to 4th Feb 18 at 8:45 PM
    Hi, we just bought a house and the guy we bought the house from has retained a plot of land next to our house. He is having a boundary fence erected to separate his land and they are digging holes and fitting concrete poles.

    Our drains at the same time of them digging completely blocked up. We had a drainage company around the clear the blockage and they said the pipe is damaged and there is a hole in the pipe. They said it looks as though the pipe has been damaged by the fence people.

    We approach the fence people to say we've been told it looks as though they have damaged our pipes in digging the fence holes. The guy agrees to dig around where the fence post is to see if they have damaged it. They dig the hole and discover it isn't damaged where they have put the pole, but he says he will keep digging until he finds the hole. At no point did he say he would charge us or did he ask us to do the work he just said they will dig until they find the hole.

    We had a lad around today digging on behalf of the fence guy for quite some time. Spending most of the day on his phone to be honest but he found the hole in the pipe. Tonight we got a text from the fence man saying that so far it's cost us £190 to dig out the pipe out and he is happy to fix it tomorrow for another 2-4 hours work.....now at no point did we ask him to dig it up. We would have happily done it ourselves today no problem. Especially if we knew it would be 190!!!

    Anyone know where we stand with this?? Already asked someone else to come and fix the pipe as I do not want that man fixing anything of ours.

    Thank you
Page 1
    • J B
    • By J B 4th Feb 18, 9:13 PM
    • 2,564 Posts
    • 855 Thanks
    J B
    • #2
    • 4th Feb 18, 9:13 PM
    • #2
    • 4th Feb 18, 9:13 PM
    They dig the hole and discover it isn't damaged where they have put the pole, but he says he will keep digging until he finds the hole. At no point did he say he would charge us or did he ask us to do the work he just said they will dig until they find the hole.
    Originally posted by ErolGirl
    Maybe you ought to have declined his offer to "keep digging"??

    Or did you?
    • ErolGirl
    • By ErolGirl 4th Feb 18, 9:33 PM
    • 40 Posts
    • 22 Thanks
    ErolGirl
    • #3
    • 4th Feb 18, 9:33 PM
    • #3
    • 4th Feb 18, 9:33 PM
    Maybe you ought to have declined his offer to "keep digging"??

    Or did you?
    Originally posted by J B
    It was my boyfriend who spoke with him in the end as the man was so rude to me I refused to speak with him again. My boyfriend said he was never under the impression we would be paying for anything. The man who owns the land next door called round to speak to the fence man and he came into the house to tell us they would be digging until they found it too. So I was under the impression he had instructed them to do so.
    • Alter ego
    • By Alter ego 4th Feb 18, 9:37 PM
    • 2,263 Posts
    • 2,188 Thanks
    Alter ego
    • #4
    • 4th Feb 18, 9:37 PM
    • #4
    • 4th Feb 18, 9:37 PM
    If the drain is communal the repair is down to the water authority. Does the pipe in question serve another property?
    Ignore me if you like, it's not the real me anyway.
    • ErolGirl
    • By ErolGirl 4th Feb 18, 10:00 PM
    • 40 Posts
    • 22 Thanks
    ErolGirl
    • #5
    • 4th Feb 18, 10:00 PM
    • #5
    • 4th Feb 18, 10:00 PM
    If the drain is communal the repair is down to the water authority. Does the pipe in question serve another property?
    Originally posted by Alter ego
    No unfortunately not, it only serves our house as we are at the end of a lane. The pipe in question in over the boundary in the plot of land the other guy owns but serves our house. The public sewer that the water board owns doesn't start until it get a to our gate posts.
    • Deastons
    • By Deastons 5th Feb 18, 12:27 AM
    • 26 Posts
    • 9 Thanks
    Deastons
    • #6
    • 5th Feb 18, 12:27 AM
    • #6
    • 5th Feb 18, 12:27 AM
    Surely the workman should have quoted for the work. Or at least given an idea of the time it might take him and his daily rate.

    If none of this was discussed (which from what you've said, it wasn't) then I don't see that you need to pay a thing. For a contract to be formed, each party needs to agree to something - he agreed to do the work but you didn't agree to pay him, so no contract is in place.

    Explain to him that you didn't discuss payment/rates/quotes and that you won't be paying. He'll have to pursue you through the courts which he's unlikely to do for £190. And if he does, he's got no contract to back-up his claims.

    The fact you've exchanged numbers is a little suspicious, though. It would suggest you were in deeper contact with him than just a friendly chat over the garden fence and may have given him the impression you were expecting him to carry out the work.
    Last edited by Deastons; 05-02-2018 at 12:31 AM.
    • hollydays
    • By hollydays 5th Feb 18, 7:49 AM
    • 15,875 Posts
    • 11,871 Thanks
    hollydays
    • #7
    • 5th Feb 18, 7:49 AM
    • #7
    • 5th Feb 18, 7:49 AM
    There are drains companies that will put a camera down the drains to see what is going on.
    I would d say you need to get this sorted out good and proper imho.
    I would ;d also be taking note of the registration numbers of the fencing contractors and checking they arent t a company who will disappear without trace
    Last edited by hollydays; 05-02-2018 at 7:59 AM.
    • arcon5
    • By arcon5 5th Feb 18, 8:47 AM
    • 13,390 Posts
    • 8,497 Thanks
    arcon5
    • #8
    • 5th Feb 18, 8:47 AM
    • #8
    • 5th Feb 18, 8:47 AM
    Not really sure where you stand legally... but your bf must have surely thought at some point this guy is spending a lot of time investigating a fault with my sewerage pipe....? Nothing in this world is free so why would he dedicate days to your issue having eliminated his employees work as the cause....?
    • bobbymotors
    • By bobbymotors 5th Feb 18, 10:24 AM
    • 602 Posts
    • 836 Thanks
    bobbymotors
    • #9
    • 5th Feb 18, 10:24 AM
    • #9
    • 5th Feb 18, 10:24 AM
    Not really sure where you stand legally... but your bf must have surely thought at some point this guy is spending a lot of time investigating a fault with my sewerage pipe....? Nothing in this world is free so why would he dedicate days to your issue having eliminated his employees work as the cause....?
    Originally posted by arcon5
    correct. as soon as it was clear that they themselves hadnt damaged it then I would expect any further work to be chargeable. Time and effort = money Im afraid
    • ErolGirl
    • By ErolGirl 5th Feb 18, 11:16 AM
    • 40 Posts
    • 22 Thanks
    ErolGirl
    It never even crossed our minds, in hindsight then yes, you would think time & effort = money. But for some reason it never even crossed our minds, we just thought he was keen to prove to us that it wan't their fault that the pipe was broken.

    Also we did no give him our numbers, the neighbour that we bought the house off must have passed on our numbers (which I am also not happy about).

    I have spoken to the Office of Fair Trading and they have said as there is no contract we do not HAVE to pay, or we can offer what we think the work is worth, but he could potentially take us to small claims if we do not pay.
    • unholyangel
    • By unholyangel 5th Feb 18, 3:47 PM
    • 11,901 Posts
    • 9,162 Thanks
    unholyangel
    Leaving aside the argument of whether a contract was actually formed (which requires an offer, acceptance, consideration, intent to be legally bound etc) there is also the consumer contract regulations.

    Which means that regardless how the contract was formed (in person, over the phone/internet etc) that they are required to tell you what the total price will be and if that is not possible, then they must tell you how the price will be calculated (ie £x an hour labour).
    Money doesn't solve poverty.....it creates it.
    • pinkshoes
    • By pinkshoes 5th Feb 18, 4:36 PM
    • 15,545 Posts
    • 21,252 Thanks
    pinkshoes
    I'd accept no liability as there was no contract mentioned or formed, but as a gesture of goodwill offer £10/hour for the time spent digging as this is what you would have paid someone else. So £20?
    Should've = Should HAVE (not 'of')
    Would've = Would HAVE (not 'of')

    No, I am not perfect, but yes I do judge people on their use of basic English language. If you didn't know the above, then learn it! (If English is your second language, then you are forgiven!)
    • DoaM
    • By DoaM 5th Feb 18, 4:47 PM
    • 3,977 Posts
    • 4,032 Thanks
    DoaM
    They found the hole ... does the location of the hole absolve the fence company from liability?

    Is the hole on your side or neighbour's side of the fence? (I'd have thought that you'd have joint liability for the maintenance of the pipe, if the water company wasn't liable).
    Diary of a madman
    Walk the line again today
    Entries of confusion
    Dear diary, I'm here to stay
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

4,560Posts Today

10,253Users online

Martin's Twitter