Hi everyone, our dealings with Westbury Homes plc started two years ago when we agreed to part exchange our home for a new build. We had our home valued by the estate agents and agreed a price for the swap.
Then the trouble started.
Westbury wanted to advertise our home for more than it was already being advertised and they also tried to get us to accept £5000 less saying it needed re-wiring and wall ties doing. We asked them how they concluded this out of the blue when it had passed their inspection. They could not answer that one, but we agreed that if a buyer had to have the work done to obtain a mortgage we would foot the bill and move into our Dream home.
On completion our solicitor told us it would be wise to withhold £4500 for extras until we were happy the snagging list was done to our satisfaction. This was the best advice we received.
Our move was delayed for two days due to the concrete screeding on the floors being the wrong type and taking two days to dry with the heating on full blast 24 hours a day. The screed mix did not stick and just peeled away from the floor. The carpet company we had refused to lay the laminate floor on the floor as it was that bad. Westbury told them to lay the flooring and if we had a problem later they would pay to sort it out.
On moving in we spent 24 hours cleaning our new home due to the rubbish left in every room by Westbury builders. The site foreman had to assist in this clean up and laid turf at the rear as compensation. They laid the turf on bricks and rubbish but what the hell we were at work and didn’t see it.
The first snagging list was made up by myself and the site foreman who was great. He found a few bits we had not seen, but the problem was the list got lost. So more time wasted, snagging list workers turned up with no parts only paint, our roof was in a poor state, the windows and floor tiles were even worse?
After months of broken promises, we sent Westbury a solicitor’s letter giving them 10 working days to do the snags or we would employ our own builders to complete the snags. Westbury sent the workers again with no parts only paint. After pulling up the carpets and being unable to lay them again properly (they were painters trying to sort flooring problems out without parts or tools) or the guys didn’t turn up at all.
Westbury Homes was now asking us to pay the money we had withheld. We told them that we would not pay until the work was done so they said they would sue us. Great see you in court! We started suing each other for the same amount Â£4500. We had to sue to avoid paying extra legal fees. The court date was set then cancelled, as Westbury was changing solicitors and they needed more time. Ten months later the day was set for court. A week before the big day, the day we were now looking forward to even if it meant having to pay them a lot of money as they could claim legal costs if they won, the solicitor phoned us. He didn’t think Westbury had a leg to stand on after looking at all the records we had and copies of letter and faxes sent to Westbury plus photos of the repairs attempted and failed. We agreed to call it a draw. They would drop the claim for the Â£4500, if we did the same.
Happy. Yes, at least we won and have the money to repair to our sub-standard house. Sad. Yes, I was looking forward to my day in court just so the smug people at Westbury Homes would realise the little people, the customer, their bread and butter won?t accept S**T and will fight back. It has taken ages and I am sure we would have won in court and would have been awarded more than the cost of putting the snagging right.
In your new homes remember don’t believe a word the builder tells you, keep a record of all phone calls, letters, faxes, everything as you may need it one day……..
Peter and Sandra
PS. The couple who purchased our old house got a mortgage with out any work having to be done the surveyor was happy with the property as it was.