I tried to call him to discuss the reason for suspending works as I was pretty confident that he was stepping outside of what was allowed under the contract, and I thought it was important to maintain the positive relationship we had developed up to that point. After a nervous day I received an email late in the afternoon to say that the roof tiling would be completed by close of business! I got my Dad to check the next morning and then lodged the claim and they were paid two days later.
A few interesting points related to this saga:
- I got some advice from NSW Fair Trading that I was most likely to have been within my rights to decline the claim, but would need to see a solicitor if the dispute reached a stalemate.
- I have been very positive and responsive in my dealings with Fowler Homes to date. I was particularly disappointed with their lack of communication, and particularly threatening to suspend the job on such dodgy grounds.
- A more customer focused response would have been to either explain to me why their claim was valid (even though it wasn't), or commit to completing the work quickly (as they did when pressed).
- The use of strong arm tactics makes me worry that Fowler are having cash flow problems. I hope that I am reading too much in to this.