I AM the builder to whom the headline in the May 10 edition “Fined for shoddy work” refers and I would like to make clear the exact circumstances surrounding this complaint.
First of all, I was not fined for shoddy work as per the headline, I was only cautioned by the Building Commission as later stated in the second paragraph of the article) for not carrying out the remedial works within the number of days allocated.
I acknowledged that there were additional works to be rectified at the property in question, which I was always going to carry out at a cost to me of approximately $7000.
Some of these remedial works were completed before the Christmas break of 2014 and it was at this point the client agreed to a verbal extension of time until the end of January to complete the remainder of the remedial works.
Upon returning to work in January with all of my trades people ready to complete the remaining remedial works, the owner refused to allow access for anyone on to the site.
It is for this reason that the Building Commission issued the caution for having exceeded the time allowance allocated to complete the works.
The Commission would not recognise the verbal agreement by me and the owner for the extension of time.
The owner then produced for the Building Commission a (highly inflated) quotation, approximately four times greater than my initial costs to have the remedial works completed by a third party.
The Building Commission forwarded this amount to me to make payment to the owner. I refused to pay the sum on the grounds of the amount being grossly excessive for the work that was required to be completed.
My next option was to make an application to the State Administrative Tribunal to hear the case.
The tribunal ruled in my favour and I was ordered to pay $9928.12. Even though this amount was higher than my initial costs for the remedial works, I thought it was a reasonable and fair decision by the tribunal and was content to pay this amount to the owner as a final settlement.
I have been building for more than 30 years and fortunately this is the first case like this I have encountered.
Over the past two weeks since this article was posted in the Gazette I have received several calls from past clients offering their support in the form of references if required by myself for future clients.
Many thanks to those people.
Editor’s note: The Gazette accepts we got it wrong in the report headline – and we apologise to Mr Tilbury for this error.
As was explained in the report and in greater detail in the letter published above, Mr Tilbury was not fined over shoddy work, but rather ordered to pay a sum of money to a home owner for incomplete repair work.