SEE ANY SPAM? PLEASE REPORT IT, TO KEEP OUR COMMUNITY CLEAN.


Do you have a plumbing business? Is your business plumbing related? Register Now


Author Topic: Have I been ripped off?  (Read 3939 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline lothwyn

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 4
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • Im new @ Plumbers NZ!
Have I been ripped off?
« on: September 07, 2012, 12:46:25 PM »
Hi, I would like to ask the plumbers community of their views and advice before I bring my plumber to the dispute tribunal to make right a few issues that doesn't seem right to me.

I have recently engaged a plumber to install a 180L hot water cylinder. The whole job costs me $2604.75 inc GST. What I get was a

1) HJ Cooper enamel coated steel 180 L water cylinder. He delivered this instead of a Rheems standard model from his email quotation.
2) new valves (changing from a low to mains pressure). This is suppose to be free from their website.
3) Workmanship for 4hrs.
4) electrical wiring from the switch to the cylinder.

My question is, looking at the above list have I been ripped off? Because I have checked the retailed pricing, a HJ Copper "stainless steel" model only goes for $1285. The Enamel coated I believe would go for much lower? The Stainless steel model has a 20 years warranty and the Enamel coated has a 5 years warranty.

Do they have the right to just change a model without my approval?

The invoice they has given just have one item on the list stating "Quote", now they said that they have missed out of the electrical work charges of $189.75 and billed me for it. As the first invoice mentioned only Quote as a single line item, what should I do with the 2nd invoice, as I am unable to verify what was charged in the first invoice. Is it a normal practice to put a single line item on the invoice?

I have since paid them for the first invoice of $2415 inc gst and I am awaiting their response on my request to provide a full detailed invoice before I paid them for the 2nd invoice. Speaking of GST, how would one interprete +gst? including? or excluding? Wouldn't it be better to put in words like inc gst or excl gst? Simply because -gst has the same meaning as +gst in this case.? I am asking this because I was confused by the +gst.

They have threaten to blacklist me (which I believe they already did, as I am not getting a response from plumbers in Auckland) and send debt collectors against me, when I tried to settle the issues with them before payment. It is not even 3 days after the job was done.

As most of my transactions are done over the phone, there is a lot of "Me said, He said" issues that I will not be mentioning here, as I cannot provide any proof or facts to back me up on it.

I am pretty stressed from this encounter and I would like to seek your advice, opinions and views, before I bring my case to the dispute tribunal.

Thank you,

Thomas

PS: I have sent them an official request to settle the issues we have and have given them a 1 weeks timeframe to respond. Not really sure if they will respond, as they have yet responded to my recent 2 emails to them, one of which is the request for warranty information.



Linkback: https://www.plumbers.co.nz/forum/ask-plumbers-public/2/have-i-been-ripped-off/1235/

Offline lothwyn

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 4
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • Im new @ Plumbers NZ!
Re: Have I been ripped off?
« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2012, 01:07:47 PM »
To add. The plumber who did the installation has done a good job. Everything is neat and tidy and working.

Offline wombles

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 202
  • Karma: +13/-0
Re: Have I been ripped off?
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2012, 01:16:04 PM »
Iwould say no, you got a reasonably priced job. I recently went to a HWC installation and the guy was charges $3500.00 and the plumber that did it wouldn't go back to see why there was not hot water!!. The first plumber hadn't installed strapping or tempering valve.

Offline robbo

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1258
  • Karma: +83/-7
Re: Have I been ripped off?
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2012, 02:37:06 PM »
hi lothwyn, unfortunately we are plumbers and not lawyers, you need to employ a lawyer to sort it out he will probably charge you another $2600.00 by the time he has finished, good luck

Offline lothwyn

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 4
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • Im new @ Plumbers NZ!
Re: Have I been ripped off?
« Reply #4 on: September 07, 2012, 02:47:38 PM »
hi lothwyn, unfortunately we are plumbers and not lawyers, you need to employ a lawyer to sort it out he will probably charge you another $2600.00 by the time he has finished, good luck

I have sought advice from Citizen Advice Burea and will be going to the community Law to seek more advice. They are a free service for people like me who cannot afford a lawyer :)

Offline lothwyn

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 4
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • Im new @ Plumbers NZ!
Re: Have I been ripped off?
« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2012, 02:50:08 PM »
Iwould say no, you got a reasonably priced job. I recently went to a HWC installation and the guy was charges $3500.00 and the plumber that did it wouldn't go back to see why there was not hot water!!. The first plumber hadn't installed strapping or tempering valve.

I think you are covered under the Consumers Guarantees act. The trader will have to make good with the issues you have.

Offline Plumber

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 714
  • Karma: +52/-2
  • ***#1 Plumber***
Re: Have I been ripped off?
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2012, 04:24:00 PM »
This is a very complex situation simply because you did not request for a quote in advance itemizing the cost.  I believe the total price is reasonable and if the job was done neat and correct then that's a plus! In hindsight I am sure you would do it differently.

Everything you do now will not guarantee the outcome your after, it might not cost you money but it will cost you time and I think that's more valuable. I would take it as valuable lesson learned and carry on doing the things you really want to do.  ;)
Please note that the advice I am giving is only my opinion and not necessarily a fact.  Please refer to our terms and conditions.

Offline Jaxcat

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1008
  • Karma: +40/-4
Re: Have I been ripped off?
« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2012, 05:21:01 AM »
Fristly you say you have an email quote mentioning a Rheem cylinder - if this is the case and the plumber changed it without consulting you then I believe that is wrong.  As far as price goes - for a mains pressure HWC job including valving and electrical $2400 - $2600 seems fairly reasonable.  It is good practice to always include GST in quotations to the public - which will differ from quotations to commercial businesses who like exclusive of GST.  I agree a quote should clearly show including or excluding GST.  My understanding is that unless specifically stated, prices are taken as if inclusive of GST, however if it says + gst - then that to me says the price is excluding GST.

I think that firstly you should put in writing to the public that you feel he has changed the HWC quoted without your agreement and that from what I understand you feel you have an inferior HWC to the one you wanted (and the warranties could be different).  If I did a quote like this I would allow retail on the HWC (this will include picking it up, delivering to site etc), installation costs (labour and materials) if you went from low pressure to mains and needed a valve kit then that could be up to $500 depending on what brand of valving kit you wanted) and of course electrical.  The electrical will cover two trips by the sparky - one to disconnect and the other to reconnect, test etc.  There may well also be a travel component involved in the quotation too.  There will be miscellaneous materials used (although not huge - still to be counted in).

This seems to be a problem around miscommunication more than anything - and the best place to start is to talk to each other, or failing that discuss by email.  If you accept a quote get the job done then I don't think it is fair to re-visit and want a time and materials type deal.  If you wanted this you should have asked for it in the first place - likewise if things went wrong and he ended up being there all day would you have been prepared to pay more than the quote? 

Every plumber will deal with quotes differently, but again I feel good practice will itemise say big items from installation - but many plumbers prefer to just give one price as customer cherry pick and say they will provide their own big appliances - but expect the plumber to pick it up and carry a warranty on it. 

If your plumber belongs to a professional organisation like Master Plumbers then you can also put in a complaint to them - see their website for details - but again try talking to your plumber first.
Have you learned lessons only of those who admired you, and were tender with you, and stood aside for you?  Have you not learned great lessons from those who braced themselves against you, and disputed the passage with you?  (Walt Whitman 1819-1891)  American Poet

Offline 07442

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 47
  • Karma: +5/-0
Re: Have I been ripped off?
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2012, 08:56:45 PM »
I've been plumbing 27 years. In my mind, you got a good deal. I don't know if the 20 year warranty on the hj cooper tank actually covers the 'tank' itself, but a stainless tank beats enamel on steel everytime as far as longevity goes.
Stainless vs enamel. I choose stainless. 20 year warranty vs 5? - take the product with the 20 year warranty.
The average life of a Rheem mains pressure tank is about 18 years - I've replaced rheem tanks in houses that I installed 20 years ago.
4 hours to convert from low pressure to mains - pretty damn good.
Electrical price.  It's about right. We pay about $150 ish in our area depending on what is required at the time.

Just my $2.00 incl gst worth.


Offline Shoreside

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 24
  • Karma: +1/-0
Re: Have I been ripped off?
« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2014, 08:52:56 PM »
No he has absolutely not ripped you off. 2600 for a low to mains upgrade is very reasonable and that included the electrical wiring!.

Offline Rodza1

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 281
  • Karma: +20/-2
Re: Have I been ripped off?
« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2014, 08:47:07 AM »
Hi Lothwyn,

I think if you were quoted a Rheem mains pressure hot water cylinder on your quote then thats what you probably should have got.
You dont quote a new system and make changes i have found as it can, and in this case has led to problems. 

As for the cylinder pricing I made enquiries about this to the merchant I use about a month back regarding pricing for s/steel hwc vs enamel lined steel. The merchant explained the prices were virtually the same, there is nothing they can do about it and because of it they rarely sell an enamel lined cylinder these days as everyone goes for stainless. Thats the case where I am located anyway.

If the quote was for a Rheem mains pressure hot water cylinder they were probably referring to their Vitreous enamel lined range unless they specifically stated s/steel on the quote. They probably should have made that clear on the quote though exactly what type of mains pressure tank you were getting etc. Nothing wrong with a hj coopers cylinder though. Check warranties between the two, they may be the same? 5 years?

I also believe that if you were quoted the full price of installation including electrical work only to be billed afterwards for the electrical work because they forgot to add it in I think this is sloppy on their part. It would be like selling someone a full computer system at a store but after the transaction the salesman saying oh i stuffed up the pricing and the screen isnt included etc. If you've got it all in writing especially the total price I think you will be ok.

If I quoted you and i stuffed it up, i would wear it. To me a quote is a quote, not an estimation/guess. I've found it a good way to become better at quoting,you dont miss stuff out for long if you learn from your mistakes.

If what you say is true I reckon to come after you with threats after three days for the money shows a lack of professionalism
and they won't do to well in business if they do that to every customer.

To me they have kind of brought this on themselves. Non descriptive quote with no detail and forgetting to allow for other services and changing the model on the cylinder. 80% of customers would raise eyebrows at this. I usually have a few sentences for a quote worth a couple of hundred dollars. A paragraph for something worth a few thousand and a cover letter for a quote worth 5k-10k etc. I understand that the people I meet are not tradespeople etc etc so being descriptive in my quotes helps them to understand which then helps me. They know exactly what they are getting for their hard earned money. 

Glad your happy with the job, quality workmanship is a big thing in this day and age. $2600 sounds good, I think you've done pretty well, I just personally dont agree with a tradesman asking for more money post job completion on a quote. It might keep his bills paid but its not good business.

 
The Plumbers Gasfitters And Drainlayers Board- "White Collar Mafia"


Share via digg Share via facebook Share via linkedin Share via twitter

Similar Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies / Views Last post
xx
Have I been Ripped Off?

Started by Jason Fabish

2 Replies
544 Views
Last post May 20, 2013, 11:30:09 AM
by Jaxcat
 
Share this topic...
In a forum
(BBCode)
In a site/blog
(HTML)