Money Moral Dilemma: Should I keep the money my plumber would have made from selling my old taps?

MSE_Kelvin Posts: 339 MSE Staff
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edited 15 December 2020 at 6:26PM in Boost your income
This week's MoneySaver who wants advice asks...

 While I was getting my bathroom redone, a woman knocked at my door and said she was there to buy my old taps, which she'd seen online - it turns out the plumber had put them up for sale. I sold her the taps, but I hadn't intended to - I assumed the plumber would have taken them away with the rest of the fittings. Should I keep the money or share it with him?

Unfortunately the MSE team can't always answer money moral dilemma questions as contributions are often emailed in or suggested in person. They are intended to be a point of debate and discussed at face value.

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🙄 Got a Money Moral Dilemma of your own? Suggest an MMD.


  • MSE_Kelvin
    MSE_Kelvin Posts: 339 MSE Staff
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    So the plumber advertises something for sale at his client's address rather than his own??


    The inventiveness of these threads becomes less believable!
    Evening lincroft1710,

    Obviously I can't share the details of the MoneySaver who submitted the Money Moral Dilemma, but I can promise you it was a genuine suggestion - according to the contributor the plumber had put the taps up for sale without their prior knowledge. Certainly one of the more unusual MMDs we've been sent  :)


    MSE Kelvin
  • al223
    al223 Posts: 32 Forumite
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    It depends what it says in your contract with the plumber, if it said they were going to remove everything, then the taps are the plumber's and the money is all theirs. If the contract didn't stipulate what was happening with the old fittings, then the taps were yours, but the plumber has done the work of listing them online and may also have to pay commission, depending on where they were listed.
  • Well this is bizarre, has the plumber asked where the taps have gone to? How did you sell  them without meaning to, would it not be better to find out from said plumber why they were selling your taps before actually selling them if you didn’t want to? Did you ask the buyer where this advert was and did you look at it...or did they have a right to them as per a contract. So many questions! I don’t think anyone can genuinely answer this, sounds like you sold them because the money looked good when presented at your doorstep 🤷🏻‍♀️If the plumber doesn’t get in contact and you can’t resolve the unanswered questions then keep it.
  • REJP
    REJP Posts: 325 Forumite
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    Very odd that as previously mentioned, the plumber gave your address without getting your permission isn't it?
    if your contract with plumber was that he would remove all scrap, you should have honoured that contract and not sold the taps which were said to be scrap.  I suggest you split the money with him, but be more aware of how much money builders and plumbers make from perks such as what seem to be perfectly useable taps.  Use that to reduce future quotes.  Scrap metal has value.
  • If you have a good plumber then tell him and see if he will share the cash. Good plumbers are like hens's teeth, you might need him again. 
  • Keep the money. The taps were not the plumbers to sell.
  • If you had the agreement he'd take all the rubbish for your convenience, why be surprised when he wants to sell it? Its common practice. I recently had my central heating tank removed during a boiler and happily let the lads take it for scrap. After all, they took a huge amount of other crap with them! In my book, if you want to keep the good bit, then take the bad bits too! 
  • MalMonroe
    MalMonroe Posts: 5,783 Forumite
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    As Flipflop13 asked, didn't the plumber say anything at all to you?

    I think it's all a bit weird because the plumber removes your taps and, without saying a word to you, advertises them as being available for collection at your address.

    Someone turns up at your door and pays you and takes the taps - but you hadn't intended for that to happen? 

    It's a bit like a sitcom. 

    If it were me, I'd really have to have a word with the plumber. If you had said he could keep what he removed from your premises, then obviously the taps were his. But if he wanted to sell them, surely he'd have waited until he'd removed them and then put his own address, or his business address? Or he could just be a philanthropist, wanting you to benefit. Whatever, it's a bit unorthodox, if he'd wanted to sell them he could have mentioned it to you, especially as he put your address. What a strange chap. If it's a lot, you could ask him if he wants half? If not, I'd just keep it. Your taps, after all, offered for sale without your knowledge.
    Please note - taken from the Forum Rules and amended for my own personal use (with thanks) : It is up to you to investigate, check, double-check and check yet again before you make any decisions or take any action based on any information you glean from any of my posts. Although I do carry out careful research before posting and never intend to mislead or supply out-of-date or incorrect information, please do not rely 100% on what you are reading. Verify everything in order to protect yourself as you are responsible for any action you consequently take.
  • If the deal was that he'd dispose of the stuff he was taking out, why are you being so petty? Give him the cash - he's done what he said he would, even if it wasn't the way you expected.
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