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Old 05-14-2013, 03:13 AM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
8,940 posts, read 15,420,745 times
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I am wondering if I am just completely off base here (which is always possible).

The outside faucet at my old house (which I am renting out) needed to be replaced. No problem, I called my usual plumber, he came and replaced it, I paid the bill for parts & labor. Less than a week later, the tenants called and told me that that new faucet was leaking. I had them call the plumber back so he could fix it, although I was pretty annoyed since he had JUST installed it less than a week before.

I just got a bill from the plumber for an hour's work. I know that plumbers have to make a living, and I normally have no problem paying workers' bills, but geez ... I feel like I got charged an extra hour for him to fix something that should not have been broken!! There was no extra charge for any parts, so it was just his time in fixing it less than a week after he INSTALLED it. Am I just totally nuts in being annoyed at this?

Last edited by karen_in_nh_2012; 05-14-2013 at 03:36 AM..
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Old 05-14-2013, 03:26 AM
 
Location: Tricity
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Hmmm... no! I would pay for parts if he used any, but not for the labor UNLESS this was a new problem even if connected with the same faucet.
Did you asked him why the replaced faucet was still leaking?
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Old 05-14-2013, 03:30 AM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elnina View Post
Hmmm... no! I would pay for parts if he used any, but not for the labor UNLESS this was a new problem even if connected with the same faucet.
Did you asked him why the replaced faucet was still leaking?
No, he just sent me the bill in the mail -- it was our finals week and I was crazy-busy and so didn't have time to deal with it. I think I am going to send the bill back to him asking for clarification. The tenants said he just fixed the exact same faucet, which was brand new (and supplied by him) -- nothing else.

At least I know I'm not crazy. I will likely end up paying the bill ANYWAY, but I want more info from him.

Thanks for the quick reply!!
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Old 05-14-2013, 03:38 AM
 
Location: Tricity
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Did you used him before? Maybe he just took the opportunity to bill you since you were not there to supervise him or ask questions.
Looks like in the future you will have to ask about the price in advance. Or ask to be told/called with an estimate before work is done.
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Old 05-14-2013, 04:21 AM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elnina View Post
Did you used him before? Maybe he just took the opportunity to bill you since you were not there to supervise him or ask questions.
Looks like in the future you will have to ask about the price in advance. Or ask to be told/called with an estimate before work is done.
I'd used him a lot before, including when I remodeled the kitchen 4 years ago (he did ALL the plumbing work at that time). Before he came the first time, I had asked the tenants to tell him to call me with an estimate before doing any work, since I had no idea how much it was going to be (he was fixing the outside faucet plus something minor inside as well). He didn't call. The tenants told me he told THEM that he knew it wasn't going to cost much, so he didn't think he needed to call. I was annoyed but that first bill WASN'T much, so I let it go. When he had to come back to fix the faucet that he'd just installed, I told the tenants to tell him that I expected NOT to be billed if he was just fixing something that he himself had installed the week before (which I'd already paid for!). I didn't get the bill for a couple of weeks so I really thought he hadn't sent one.

Needless to say I'm a little frustrated. I may just call him today, although I usually get his wife as he's out on jobs, and I vastly prefer to have things in writing anyway.
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Old 05-14-2013, 05:39 AM
 
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I would call and ask, why send the bill back??
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Old 05-14-2013, 05:42 AM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
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Originally Posted by golfgal View Post
I would call and ask, why send the bill back??
Yes, it would seem easier to call, but I know from experience he's hard to reach ... I almost always get his wife. If he were on email I would just email him. I really prefer to have things in writing.
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Old 05-14-2013, 07:42 AM
 
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I think you are right to be unhappy and I think you should call him instead of sending the invoice back. Of course, you might have a reason to have written record of this dispute. If so, e-mail might be better, if that is an option.

Quote:
Originally Posted by karen_in_nh_2012 View Post
...When he had to come back to fix the faucet that he'd just installed, I told the tenants to tell him that I expected NOT to be billed if he was just fixing something that he himself had installed the week before (which I'd already paid for!).
...
I am a bit curious about why you chose to leave the instructions with the tenant instead of giving them directly to the plumber.

It looks like the plumber has done acceptable work before for you, and you might want to retain his service, but it seems like he is pushing the boundary now. Maybe this incident is a trigger to establish some norms with him.
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Old 05-14-2013, 07:50 AM
 
2,669 posts, read 6,654,188 times
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Yes, just call the guy. Could be an honest mistake on his part, or maybe there was indeed a new problem unrelated to the earlier work. You should give him a chance to make it right before assuming he's trying to get over on you.
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Old 05-14-2013, 08:21 AM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SMUR View Post
I am a bit curious about why you chose to leave the instructions with the tenant instead of giving them directly to the plumber.
Because I was working and couldn't be at my old house when he came, but the tenants could -- i.e., THEY were the ones who would actually see him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SMUR View Post
It looks like the plumber has done acceptable work before for you, and you might want to retain his service, but it seems like he is pushing the boundary now. Maybe this incident is a trigger to establish some norms with him.
The irony is, I want him to come to my new house and give me an estimate on adding some bath fixtures. So there's definitely more work for him, and I have been satisfied with him in the past.

Quote:
Originally Posted by arbyunc View Post
Yes, just call the guy. Could be an honest mistake on his part, or maybe there was indeed a new problem unrelated to the earlier work. You should give him a chance to make it right before assuming he's trying to get over on you.
I actually don't think he's trying to cheat me -- I just wonder if he thinks any time he works (even if it's to correct a mistake that he himself made -- although I don't know for sure if that's the case here!), he should get paid for his time.

I am just going to call him ... but I bet I get his wife.
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