Dodgy quotes from maintenance companies & estate agents

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    Dodgy quotes from maintenance companies & estate agents

    Hi,

    I'm a new landlord and I'm very worried and stressed about the outrageous quotes I've been given about the repairs in my property. An electrician tried to charge me £1500 for works that don't seem to be needed after sending UK Power Networks to fix/update the earthing. One maintenace team wants to charge £5,000 for general work throughout the property and another £8,000 for the same work. Both are offering varied solutions to essentially condensation as well as redoing botched work and putting in a back door. I always get the impression that the estate agent and even the tenants are often in cohoots with particular trademen to hike up prices. For this reason I have insisted that invoices are paid by me and not the estate agent that can charge whatever they like out of the rent - and for months in this case!

    Whenever I insist on being sent evidence, readings, pictures, videos or a breakdown of costings many of the trades people disappear. The estate agent and the tenants also pipe down for a few months until they pipe back up with more exaggerated issues. Currently I would like to fix 3 key areas that should be doable within 2 days by competent and trustwothy people but the estimates are absolutely ridiculous! I only know of one trustworthy tradesman that has done their job and fixed any issues without trickery and con games, but they're a specialist and cannot do other works. Their lack of dishonesty has made them unpopular with both the tenants and the estate agent. So I've changed estate agents but moved to what appears to be an even bigger con as I assummed a bigger firm would have more transparency - they do not - just even larger invoices.

    Am I the only one here that feels like this and what have you done about it? I
    Last edited by POLandlady; 18-06-2019, 11:43 AM. Reason: spelling

    #2
    May be obvious but why don't you find your own trade's person and get the work done, rather than through the letting agent?

    Comment


      #3
      Learn to do basic property maintenance yourself, and make sure your property is tip top before letting. Tradesmen never fail to disappoint me.

      Comment


        #4
        I'm fortunate that I've used the same tradesmen for 20 years, god help me when one of them retires! Don't include Estate Agents in the transaction as they will take a percentage on top. Arrange your own tradesmen and be present when they are pricing up the job.

        Comment


          #5
          Honest and reliable tradesmen/woman are the toughest people to find. Having massive headaches today!

          Comment


            #6
            I just ignore outrageous quotes! Best to oversee all repairs yourself from now on. Recommended tradespeople, though not always, generally are best. Or how about your local trading standards? Ours has a list of tradesmen.

            Comment


              #7
              What are the three key areas, what needs doing in them, and what are the quotes you have received?

              Comment


                #8
                I use local tradespeople who have good reputations and that i have built relationships with.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by daveg View Post
                  What are the three key areas, what needs doing in them, and what are the quotes you have received?
                  I need a new back door & have been quoted between £695 and £1400. The bathroom was re-tiled in a very poor way so it needs re-tiling and have been quoted between £700 - £1500. There are wet patches on the wall around a chimney breast in the lounge and damp specialists say it's not damp, while maintenance companies say it is so quotes vary from £1500 to £5000. There is a lot of conflicting information, including the tenants arguing with what the tradespeople say. I don't live in the same city as the property but I moved out of it a year ago so I'm distressed at the level of complaints and the lack of accurate information about what to do to rectify issues or reasonable charges.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Jon66 View Post
                    I use local tradespeople who have good reputations and that i have built relationships with.
                    I'm not in the situation to do that. Also, I find that I find people with good reviews and they sound reasonable on the phone but once they've vistited the property they turn. They change from we'll do what needs to be done once diagnosing the problem to making outlandish claims like giving a BRAND NEW boiler danger status or the electrics in the house ridiculous readings, but when I send in the energy company (for free) they mention nothing like that and registered gas engineers find nothing wrong with the boiler that can explain sudden and frequent drops in water pressure and nothing wrong with the boiler.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Wainwright View Post
                      I just ignore outrageous quotes! Best to oversee all repairs yourself from now on. Recommended tradespeople, though not always, generally are best. Or how about your local trading standards? Ours has a list of tradesmen.
                      I'll look at that thank you. The other issue is that the tenant dislikes having several people in to quote the job and makes it difficult to arrange appointments. She also actively chases away tradespeople she cannot manipulate by giving them a hard time when they're at the property. A couple of tradespeople have refused to return to the property due to the tenant's rudeness.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by ash72 View Post
                        May be obvious but why don't you find your own trade's person and get the work done, rather than through the letting agent?
                        I'm 300 miles away from the property.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Was this once your own home, or was it left to you in a will?

                          If you bought it as buy to let, without knowing the area and previous experience. as a landlord, I think that would be your real problem.

                          You need a full management agent, although that leaves you the problem of finding a good one, as even agents have to be managed. Really you need to start on on local properties ina areas you know well.

                          Also, although tenants may prefer to supervise tradespeople, for security reasons, it is not their job. You need to attend during their visits or have a trusted agent to do that.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            If the bathroom was tiled poorly, you may need more than re-tiling. If any of the substrate has been soaked, it would be silly to put new tiles back.

                            Rather than plasterboard, I always use and recommend Aquapanel board secured to battens on a solid wall, or direct to studs in a stud wall. This gives a small space behind the board for water to evaporate if any grout joints fail.

                            Regarding your other problems, have you checked your chimney flashing & pointing? Have a word with Safestyle regarding a door quote.
                            Buy Knauf New Aquapanel Board - 12.5mm x 900mm x 1.2m online at Wickes.co.uk. We supply trade quality DIY and home improvement products at great low prices.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by POLandlady View Post

                              I need a new back door & have been quoted between £695 and £1400. The bathroom was re-tiled in a very poor way so it needs re-tiling and have been quoted between £700 - £1500. There are wet patches on the wall around a chimney breast in the lounge and damp specialists say it's not damp, while maintenance companies say it is so quotes vary from £1500 to £5000. There is a lot of conflicting information, including the tenants arguing with what the tradespeople say. I don't live in the same city as the property but I moved out of it a year ago so I'm distressed at the level of complaints and the lack of accurate information about what to do to rectify issues or reasonable charges.
                              So it's pay one maintenance team £5000+ or the other £8000+, oth of which have been recommended by the estate agent

                              Comment

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