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Wardrobe Install - Not as requested. Opinions?

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  1. #1
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    Default Wardrobe Install - Not as requested. Opinions?

    First up, I couldn't find a more relevant sub-forum so I posted in this one, I hope that's ok.

    Yesterday we had a local, reputable, joinery manufacturer come and install our built-in robes. My partner & I had designed what we wanted and I provided detail drawings including plan, elevation and section to the manufacturer. One of the key notes was that the joinery be notched around the existing cornice. I confirmed this would be possible when they came out to quote and also when they came out to do a check-measure before commencing manufacture.

    Yesterday the installers turned up and, after they'd brought all their gear in and were about to start, I told the guy in charge that they have to notch around the cornices as we want to leave them intact. He said "yep, no problem, that's easy enough".

    I also said I wanted them to cut the carpet around the robes, he said that too wasn't a problem, they do it all the time. I furthered this by saying "it's only nylon carpet, but it isn't that old, we will replace it but it will do us for a few more years".

    I was working in another room and left them to do their thing (I hate people standing over me and don't do it to others) but stuck my head in when they went out for lunch. I found that they had notched the cornice and made a very long cut into the carpet, a long way past where they needed to.

    The damage was done so I left it until they completed the job. They called me in and asked what I thought. The joinery itself is spot on, nicely finished and exactly as I'd detailed (the MDF panels were by my request, they will be sealed and painted when we do the room). However they did a terrible job of trimming the carpet along the track. The gap varies from 10-20mm.

    I said "so, I have to find a piece of beading or similar to go over that gap then?" The installer replied "How long until you get new carpet?" I said "A couple of years, as I'd said before." To which he replied "Oh, I thought you were doing it pretty soon. If I had have known that I would have done a much neater job. Ah well, you'll find something to cover that up."

    I then pointed out the large cut in the carpet. He said "That was unavoidable because we had to get the end panel to slide in against the wall." I didn't mention the notched cornice, but basically what he was saying was, because they didn't notch the end panel around the cornice they had to slide it into the gap they'd created in the cornice. The end panel runs floor-ceiling so I understand that you couldn't do it with carpet there, but the problem would have been avoided if they had have notched around the cornice rather than cutting into it.

    Now, how should I take this up with the manufacturer? I have new wardrobes, no doubt, and they perform exactly as we wanted. However, they did not fulfil my request to leave the cornice intact and I don't know what to do about the carpet. I have paid them a 50% deposit of $1,360 (total cost $2,720). Should I discuss some kind of deduction because the job wasn't completed as requested?

    I am going to have to do some screwing around to try and fix this carpet, I doubt I can get the big cut to close up as the carpet has stretched and there is about a 2mm gap. Not to mention trying to find some kind of bead to cover the gap between the carpet and the robe.

    TL;DR - Wardrobes installed, requested the cornice remain intact but the installers notched it. Also requested the carpet be trimmed to suit the robes, they did but left a large gap on the assumption the carpet was being replaced. How should this be approached with the manufacturer? Should there be a deduction from the final payment to compensate for this?

    Photos:

    Cut in carpet @ lunch break.



    Notch in cornice @ lunch break.



    Notch in cornice @ lunch break.



    Notch in cornice @ lunch break.



    Carpet gap upon completion.



    Carpet gap and cut upon completion.



    Overall of robes.


    Overall of robes.

  2. #2
    Je pense, donc METRIX's Avatar
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    I would just ring the company, and let them know you are very happy with the product, but there are some issues with the installation, maybe send them the pics to show your concerns.

    The cutting of the cornice, this can be a tricky thing to get perfect, unless you have a multitool, it gives a very fine and straght cut, I would assume they should have one of these if they install these on a daily basis.

    But the gaps can be repaired with no more gaps, and you will not notice it once painted, which I would also assume they would have done for you as a finished product, rather than leaving it all open.

    The small gap at the front carpet can be covered temporarily with a thin timber trim, but should not have needed to be if they took more care, perhaps it is a miss communication, you might have been better saying to them, Please cut the carpet out underneath the wardrobe, but if you can make sure it is flush to the front of the wardrobe as well don't intend on getting rid of it until a few years time.

    Unfoertunately things can get mis understood if not explained 100% what it is you want, I would just contact them and see what they say.

    I noticed some nice looking floorboards under the carpet, worst case you could pull it all up and use the boards until time for new carpet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by METRIX View Post
    The cutting of the cornice, this can be a tricky thing to get perfect, unless you have a multitool, it gives a very fine and straght cut, I would assume they should have one of these if they install these on a daily basis.
    They did use a multitool to cut the cornice and the used gap-sealer to fill the gap. The issue is I expressly told them NOT to cut the cornice and that it had to remain intact.

    Quote Originally Posted by METRIX View Post
    The small gap at the front carpet can be covered temporarily with a thin timber trim, but should not have needed to be if they took more care, perhaps it is a miss communication

    Unfoertunately things can get mis understood if not explained 100% what it is you want, I would just contact them and see what they say.
    I posted a truncated version of the conversation. When speaking to him I made it perfectly clear that the carpet was to be removed from under the robe and that the edge of the carpet should butt up neatly to the track.

    Quote Originally Posted by METRIX View Post
    I noticed some nice looking floorboards under the carpet, worst case you could pull it all up and use the boards until time for new carpet.
    The rest of the house is polished boards but the bedrooms are carpet, we prefer this. The fact is I shouldn't have to pull up the carpet if they'd just done their job properly. It takes next to no time more to cut a line in the right place than the wrong place. The units were pre-fabricated, they knew the dimensions and where the track would sit.

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    Great, you have answerd all your own questions, contact the company and express exactly what you said above and see what they have to say, they have failed to meet your expectations, or requirements as expressed to them, so they have not done the job as requested by you

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    A bit of an update on this one. The owner of the business arranged a carpet layer to come out and rectify the carpet. They closed the gap up, you can still see a line but no gap. They also installed a smooth-edge around the robe and stretched the carpet to take up the gap. This worked quite well.


    So, I'm left with a slightly visible line in the carpet from the overly large cut, as well as the cornice issue.


    I am self employed and had to spend 4 hours at home (unable to work as I needed to be in the office) while the carpet layer did his thing. I don't think it's unreasonable to deduct my out-of-pocket's for this time, is it?


    I'm also waiting for the plasterer to come around later this week (to do another job for me), he'll give me a price on what it would cost to replace the cornice in that room, I will deduct this from the outstanding amount also.

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    JB1
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    I'm not sure about the wardrobe company paying for the plastering. If it's a permanent fixture and it looks like it is, I'd wouldn't pursue this.

    But I think it's unreasonable to be paid for your inconvenience.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JB1 View Post
    I'm not sure about the wardrobe company paying for the plastering. If it's a permanent fixture and it looks like it is, I'd wouldn't pursue this.
    But down the track, if we decided to remove them (we plan on being in this house for a long time) we would have to pay to reinstate the cornice. This style is unavailable so we'd need to pull all the cornice and reinstall. I had specified, and confirmed multiple times including 5 minutes before they started installing, the cornice must stay intact, they didn't do this. Down the track I would have to bear that cost through no fault of my own, hardly seems fair.

    Quote Originally Posted by JB1 View Post
    But I think it's unreasonable to be paid for your inconvenience.
    Thankyou for your input. The problem I have is, I'm a sole-trader and had to spend a morning away from my business, earning no money, through fault of their installers. Can you elaborate why it is unreasonable that I be compensated for my lost earnings? (I'm not attacking, I just want to know how I'm being unreasonable.) I allowed a day for the installation as per their program. They stuffed up the install which meant I had to stay at home for a morning whilst they fixed the damage, this wasn't my fault and wasn't something I took into account when I budgeted for the installation.

    Despite my requests they also didn't give me any warning they were coming to do the repair. I requested at least a days notice so I could make sure clients weren't coming in etc. Instead they rang me at 5PM on a Thursday and said they'd be there at 8:30AM on the Friday. I said that's not really convenient and that I'd requested a bit more notice. They said they "are so busy it would be months before they'd be able to get back if it wasn't Friday."

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    Chances are the cornice can be patched or some obtained to match, in any case the wardrobe is a permanent installation and to expect to deduct the cost of reinstating a new cornice is unreasonable and wouldn't get you very far in a small claims tribunal, I suspect you have got what you ordered it is just not installed as you would like.

    It was I assume your decision to hang around for four hours while they worked, unless they had asked you to stay there is no basis for a claim, they have rectified the problem, you could have gone away and left them to it if you wanted.

    I understand your frustration that you haven't got what you wanted and I don't think you were being unreasonable but on the other hand other than perhaps poor listening skills the supplier has given you waht you ordered and these are built ins after all, the method of installation is also within normal work practices. These are the delights of working with others, the gripes are minor and not worth the hassle in the end you have a completed job as ordered at the price it was ordered at, you have come across that time old problem of people either not taking notes or reading them, most work you get done will have some form of variation the trick is to minimise the variations and develop some tolerence to the work practices of others.

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    But down the track, if we decided to remove them (we plan on being in this house for a long time) we would have to pay to reinstate the cornice. This style is unavailable so we'd need to pull all the cornice and reinstall. I had specified, and confirmed multiple times including 5 minutes before they started installing, the cornice must stay intact, they didn't do this.

    If you decide to remove the wardrobe in the future, you will not be required to rip all the cornice down, this is slightly over exagerated, your cornice is still available, companies like Silvers cornice and many others still produce this cornice, and it costs all of $6.40 per metre look up SC051 I thnk you might find this is the same one.
    Cornices | Silver Cornices

    OK so they made a mistake and cut the cornice, but it's not the end of the world, as you said you intend on being in this house for a long time, and you also said IF you decide to remove them, by then the wardrobes will also have been there for a long time, which means they probably won't be worth taking out (why you would want to do this anyway!).

    I guarantee you, the house is worth more to sell if it has built in wardrobes than if it didn't, so you will make up for losing that piece of cornice when you sell the house and the wardrobes will add more value to the house than the wardrobes initially cost.

    Down the track I would have to bear that cost through no fault of my own, hardly seems fair.

    Sometimes life is not fair, if you want to see what's not fair, take a trip to the Westmead Childrens Hospital and see all the sick children, with cancer and many other diseases they have through no fault of their own, now that's not fair.


    Thankyou for your input. The problem I have is, I'm a sole-trader and had to spend a morning away from my business, earning no money, through fault of their installers. Can you elaborate why it is unreasonable that I be compensated for my lost earnings? (I'm not attacking, I just want to know how I'm being unreasonable.) I allowed a day for the installation as per their program. They stuffed up the install which meant I had to stay at home for a morning whilst they fixed the damage, this wasn't my fault and wasn't something I took into account when I budgeted for the installation.

    This was your choice to stay there for 4 hours, If I persued Telstra, or iinet or the many others who have wasted my time over the years having to wait at home for them to rectify a fault of their own doing (and they are not allowed to be on your premises on their own and I had no choice but to be there), then I would be a millionare, just move on and forget persuing them for your pay, it is not worth the trouble, and you will waste more time persuing this than just 4 hours.

    Yes we understand they wasted your time, and you allowed a certain time as per their program, and they stuffed up, and this meant you had to stay home, and you did not budget for this, and this and that, not everything in this life is about one minute here, one hour there.

    I believe you have got a good outcome, they made a mistake, you notified them and they fixed their mistake, there are many thousands of others who would not have got anything without a major uproar, I am not having a go at you, but put it into perspective.

    Despite my requests they also didn't give me any warning they were coming to do the repair. I requested at least a days notice so I could make sure clients weren't coming in etc. Instead they rang me at 5PM on a Thursday and said they'd be there at 8:30AM on the Friday. I said that's not really convenient and that I'd requested a bit more notice. They said they "are so busy it would be months before they'd be able to get back if it wasn't Friday.

    Welcome to the real world, not everything goes to plan, and they may be right about it being months, althought I think they were exagerating a little, I would be more thankful the problems have now been fixed, and apart from the cornice cutting it appears to your satisfaction.

    IMO, you need to move past this, and enjoy the new wardrobes, they did not destroy your house, they made a few mistakes, mainly from what sounds like them not listening to you, but it appears they have now listened to you and repaired the mistakes to a reasonable level, if you are not happy they you can persue it further with the Fair Trading in your state, but this hardly seems worth it

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    I would have to agree with what's been said above, you're wasting your time trying to get any compensation. From what you have said there were issues with the install and they have returned in a timely manner to rectify them. Whether or not you can buy that cornice off the shelf now or not is irrelevant, as you can get any cornice remade. All you would need to do is take a sample to a manufacturer and they can mold and reproduce the cornice for a cost. Otherwise just put in a different profile which matches the heritage of the property, plenty of houses have different profiles in different rooms. I'm not sure what sort of business you are in, but maybe you could have moved your office to another room of the house out of the way of the tradesmen.

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    If you received a deduction for the cornice in the chance you may remove the robe and sell, would you pay the deduction back if it was never removed?

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    JB1
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    Default Wardrobe Install - Not as requested. Opinions?

    I would put the same profile cornice around the wardrobe.

    Would make it look like part of the house and not a portable piece of furniture.




    Sent from my iPhone 4S using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by plum View Post
    If you received a deduction for the cornice in the chance you may remove the robe and sell, would you pay the deduction back if it was never removed?
    Plus many years of intrest on that money

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnc View Post
    perhaps poor listening skills
    It was noted in the initial consultation, on the detail drawings I provided, during their site measure before construction and on the day of construction not 5 minutes before they commenced removal that the cornice is to remain intact. I can't see how I could be any clearer.

    Quote Originally Posted by johnc View Post
    the trick is to minimise the variations and develop some tolerence to the work practices of others.
    Refer above for my attempts to minimise the variations. I have been a detail draftsman for more than a decade and understand things don't go to plan and there are always variations to the details or construction methods. However this was entirely avoidable. As well as that, the cut in the carpet (repaired but still visible) would have been avoided entirely if they had have followed my details. I had consulted with them before construction, on several occasions, and confirmed the design and construction technique was achievable by them.

    Quote Originally Posted by METRIX View Post
    you will not be required to rip all the cornice down, this is slightly over exagerated, your cornice is still available
    Thanks for that. That is the closest I've found to my profile, though it is still not 100%.

    Quote Originally Posted by METRIX View Post
    I guarantee you, the house is worth more to sell if it has built in wardrobes than if it didn't
    No doubt, but there is the possibility for this room to be re-purposed once we have kids (3-5 years from now) and these robes would be removed.

    Quote Originally Posted by METRIX View Post
    Sometimes life is not fair, if you want to see what's not fair, take a trip to the Westmead Childrens Hospital and see all the sick children, with cancer and many other diseases they have through no fault of their own, now that's not fair.
    Wow, really? Using sick children to make your point about wardrobes? FWIW over the last 3 years myself and the club I'm involved with has worked with, and donated over $180,000 to, the likes of the Heart Foundation, Royal Flying Doctor Service, Kids With Cancer, Ronald McDonald House and various local smaller charities helping people with Autism et al that have lost government funding. I understand there are greater issues in the world but that's not the discussion we're having in this thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by METRIX View Post
    This was your choice to stay there for 4 hours
    After being robbed not so long ago (just before we moved into this house) I won't leave my house open to anyone I don't know. Least of all a tradesman that I didn't know nor did I engage.


    Quote Originally Posted by JB1 View Post
    I would put the same profile cornice around the wardrobe.

    Would make it look like part of the house and not a portable piece of furniture.
    I'd love to but can't find the profile. Metrix suggestion has come the closest but still isn't 100%. I've tried every plaster supplier in my city, looked at a few places online as well as places in Hobart and Devonport. All say "good luck with that..." I deal with a lot of builders and tradies that work on heritage properties. These guys are experts at finding rare profiles but none have been able to turn up this one.

    Quote Originally Posted by Craigoss View Post
    I'm not sure what sort of business you are in, but maybe you could have moved your office to another room of the house out of the way of the tradesmen.
    I don't have a home office, I have professional offices in the city. This was the point, as a draftsman I need a reasonable level of infrastructure to be able to do my job, it's not something I can just pack up and take home with me for the morning.

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    At the end of the day they haven't done what you have requested, anybody would be cheesed off, if everything you asked for was in writing then normally in the industry one would tally all the associated costs to make good & deduct that off the total bill, not before giving them the opportunity to make good the damage. Now if all you requested wasn't in writing your in for a battle because its just your word against theirs, the cost in time & money pursuing it over a minor thing will drive you round the twist. A lesson learned about trades is until they have proved their competence you watch them closely

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    Quote Originally Posted by intertd6 View Post
    At the end of the day they haven't done what you have requested, anybody would be cheesed off, if everything you asked for was in writing then normally in the industry one would tally all the associated costs to make good & deduct that off the total bill, not before giving them the opportunity to make good the damage.
    Thankyou, this has been my point all along.

    Quote Originally Posted by intertd6 View Post
    Now if all you requested wasn't in writing
    The drawing I sent them includes a note about skirts and cornices, this was also in my initial email - "The wardrobes will need to be notched around the existing cornice and skirting.The wardrobes will need to be notched around the existing cornice and skirting." No proof but it was verbally explained during their site checks and before installation commenced.

    Quote Originally Posted by intertd6 View Post
    A lesson learned about trades is until they have proved their competence you watch them closely


    Agreed, but I also didn't want to be standing over them. Silly me assumed they'd get it right, haha.


    I got the bill for the outstanding amount here, will give them a call and discuss it with them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BLWNHR View Post
    Thankyou, this has been my point all along.
    I also expressed the same to you about 4 weeks ago, we do read the posts and your concerns, and offer advice, below was my reply.


    METRIX
    Great, you have answerd all your own questions, contact the company and express exactly what you said above and see what they have to say, they have failed to meet your expectations, or requirements as expressed to them, so they have not done the job as requested by you




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