Pluumber took taps, electrician cut timber bench top

Discussion in 'Property Management' started by Wollemi, 9th Dec, 2009.

  1. Wollemi

    Wollemi Member

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    Who is responsible?

    Could anyone provide information about responsibility for the following two situations that occurred during the management of my residential property.

    1. A plumber was called regarding the kitchen sink taps, which were reported as ‘old jamming and would not turn off’. The plumber used by the managing agency came to the property, removed the existing taps and spout and replaced them with a budget chrome set with a spout designed for a basin, not a kitchen sink, ie has a reach of 100mm rather than the existing spout with a reach of 150mm.
    When I returned to live in the property I phoned the plumber and asked where were my original taps and spout and why did he take them. He replied that I should have said to leave them there and that they were probably on the scrap metal heap. I replied that I was not there, and that the taps were high quality, at which time he told me they were probably made in China. (They were solid brass gold plated Dorf Manor House).
    (By the way, the same plumber had reported on a previous occasion that the heat exchange hot water tank feeding the central heating system had burst and would need to be removed and replaced, his suggestion was to dismantle the system and install gas heating. I did not want to do this, so the situation remained static until a general handyman charged $100 for a silicone application to the outlet pipe and the system became fully operational).
    I contacted Dorf technical department who advised what would be needed to restore the taps to function ie cleaning threads, replacing O rings and reseating the valves.
    Dorf no longer make the gold plated taps, so they cannot be replaced.
    Question is: what are my entitlements in this situation. I have found another company who will supply taps similar to the originals, at a cost of $372.00. If the plumber had left the original taps, I would have had them repaired and installed, and I don’t know why he took the spout, given that it was working OK.


    2. A tenant reported one hotplate on the electric cooktop was not working and an electrician was called by the agent. I was told by the agent that the cooktop and underbench oven was not suitable for the location and did not vent property, it was in place for 13 years and installed according to instructions and worked fine for the years that I used it. When I returned I phoned the electrician about the stove, wanting to know where it was. He said it was at the tip and that the tenants had not cleaned it and allowed liquids and fats to spill onto the wiring underneath which was hazardous and the entire stove had to be trashed. The agent had not told me about this.
    A replacement stove was required, but new ovens require a slightly larger cabinet space. I advised that property manager that I did not want the solid timber hardwood kitchen benches or cabinetry cut or altered so a second hand cooktop and oven was sourced by the electrician and installed.

    Upon returning to the property, it was necessary to replace the 2nd hand stove and when the cooktop was removed I discovered that the 35mm solid timber bench top had been cut 50mm wider and a new standard cooktop will by shy by about 10-15mm. The stove manufacturers do not have a surround that can be used to cover the gap.

    (By the way, the operating/installation manual for the original cooktop and underbench oven was removed from the house manual, so I was unable to provide technical information when trying to verify the suitability of the appliance for the location with the manufacturer, but the consultant expressed doubt that it was unsuitable, and it was installed according to manufacturers specifications.

    Question is: what recourse, if any, do I have about the alterations? The less satisfactory situation of installing a 2nd hand stove was to avoid altering the woodwork, but it has occurred anyway, in spite of me telling the PM that I did not want it.
    Is the PM or the electrician accountable?


    These incidents are part of a host of other complaints concerning the negligent management of the property by the agents. Their ‘Guarantee’ states ‘we monitor repairs very closely. We act on repairs according to your instructions in the Management Agency Agreement. We maintain complete records of maintenance carried out to your property for future reference’.
     
  2. DavidMc

    DavidMc Member

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    Sorry mate I feel for you.

    I get stuff like this all the time.

    I would:

    1. Find out where the communication broke down,
    2. Speak directly to the repair men in the future,
    3. Consider a new PM.
     
  3. Perp

    Perp Member

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    I'm surprised that you expected that the old taps would be left behind. If they had been, I think 99% of people would say "why didn't the plumber use his common sense and throw away the old taps?". If the taps were so precious to you, you should specifically have asked for them to be repaired rather than replaced.

    The oven situation is slightly different. If you specified the woodwork shouldn't be altered, then it shouldn't have been. Do you have it in writing that the benchtop wasn't to be cut? If so, then I'd get the PM to sort it out with the tradesmen they organised.

    Having said that, I wouldn't have thought that a 10mm gap - 5mm each side of the oven - was unacceptable, but perhaps that's just me. Or perhaps I've misunderstood what you're describing.
     
  4. AndrewT

    AndrewT Member

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    What the plumber did, I think, is ridiculous. We do some maintenance work of that nature and fair enough, if it was a budget set, throw them away. Any plumber with half a brain though would know how expensive Dorf are (and unlike alot of budget models, can be serviced), in which it probably cost more time and money to rip them out and replace with a budget set then it would be to service them properly in the first place! I don't know w hat you can do about the situation but definitly do not use that plumber again.
     
  5. Perp

    Perp Member

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    Oh, OK. See, I didn't know that, but if you think a plumber should know that, then fair enough.

    I find it interesting that you think Dorf are expensive though; I thought they were one of the cheaper brands. :confused: LOL
     
  6. AndrewT

    AndrewT Member

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    Lol, actually you would be suprised how expensive some are. In my opinions, a $400 tap set is expensive...but we do service Argent taps and they can go above $600 just for a single mixer!
     
  7. battler

    battler Member

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    What was the price of scrap brass at the time?:rolleyes:
    It's always been beer money.