Managing a builder (pack)

About this service

This pack provides important documents that can be used in the event of a problem during the course of your building project. It provides templates for engaging with the builder for a series of actions that might be required to get the project back on track or within budget, or to make good any building problems that have occurred. In the worst-case scenario it also provides documents that can be used to terminate a contract or seek redress. See the individual information associated with each document in this pack for a full description of their use.

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Included in this service:

  • Complaint about delays in building work
    If you have agreed a date for completion of building works, or been given an indication of a date, and the work has not been completed by your builder, you can use this document to create a complaint letter. This document can also be used if you have not been given an indication of a completion date, but a reasonable period has passed without the work being completed. The letter makes time an essence of the contract, meaning that if your builder does not complete the work by the time specified, you can terminate the contract.
  • Demand original builder pay costs of new builder
    Use this document after you have sent our 'Request faulty building work to be fixed' and 'Letter enclosing estimates to complete building work' and your new builder has completed the outstanding work. If the cost of employing your new builder is more than what you have paid your original builder, the letter will demand payment of that sum. If the cost of having the new builder complete the work is less then the amount which you have paid the original builder, the letter will not demand any money from your builder, but will state that your contract has come to an end. If you are a consumer and your contract was made after 1 October 2015, this letter will include your claims under the Consumer Rights Act.
  • Demand original builder to pay costs of new builder to complete work
    Use this document after you have sent our ‘Letter enclosing estimates to complete building work’ and your new builder has completed the outstanding work. If the cost of employing your new builder is more than what you have paid your original builder, the letter will demand payment of that sum. If the cost of having the new builder complete the work is less then the amount which you have paid the original builder, the letter will not demand any money from your builder, but will state that your contract has come to an end.
  • Letter enclosing estimates to complete building work
    If you have terminated your builder's contract using our ‘Letter terminating contract for failure to complete outstanding building work’, you can then use this letter to enclose the estimates you have received from a new builder to complete the work left outstanding by your original builder. Your builder might respond by offering to complete the work, by challenging the reasonableness of the estimates or by offering to settle your claim. If you do employ a new builder to complete the work, you can then use our "Demand original builder pay costs of new builder" letter.
  • Letter enclosing estimates to fix faulty building works
    You can use this letter if you have sent the letter 'Request faulty building works to be fixed' and the matter hasn't been resolved. With this letter, you can send the builder copies of estimates that you have got from other builders for the cost of the necessary remedial works; confirm which of these estimates you have accepted; and reserve your rights to look to the original builder to recover the extra costs that you may incur in rectifying the problems. This letter is suitable for consumers or businesses.
  • Letter terminating contract for incomplete building work
    Use this letter to terminate the contract with your builder and to advise him/her that you will be employing another builder to complete the work. Before using this document, you should have sent our "Complaint about delays in builder work" letter in which you gave a final date of when building work must be completed. After sending this letter, you can use our "Letter enclosing estimates from new builder" when you obtain estimates from prospective new builders to complete the work outstanding.
  • Rejection of a builder's bill which exceeds initial estimate/quotation
    If you have instructed a builder to carry out work for you, and the final invoice has exceeded the quotation or estimate, you can use this letter to reject your builder's bill. An estimate may be slightly higher or lower than the final charge made – a quotation should be exact, irrespective of whether the builder has done more or less work. If you did not agree a quote or estimate before beginning building work, and the builder's bill was unreasonable for the work involved, you can use this document as well.
  • Request access on neighbour's land for building/maintenance work
    If you or your builders need to go on to your neighbour's land to carry out necessary repair works on your property, you can use this letter to request access. If your neighbour refuses consent, you might be able to obtain a county court order allowing you such access as long as the work is considered to be 'reasonably necessary' for the preservation of your property. It is important, however, that you first send a written request for consent directly to your neighbour. Please note that this document can only be used in England & Wales and cannot be used for any work relating to a party wall.
  • Request faulty building work to be fixed
    If you have employed a builder whose work was faulty or who used materials which did not conform to the contract, use this letter to ask the builder to put the faults right free of charge. The letter allows you to say what you consider to be a reasonable time to complete the repairs and/or replace the goods. It warns the builder that you will employ another builder and recover the costs and/or reject the non-conforming goods if they don't complete the work. This letter is suitable for use by a business or consumer. If you are a consumer and the contract was made after 1 October 2015, this letter includes your claim under the Consumer Rights Act to have the builder re-do the work and/or repair or replace the faulty materials. It warns that if the builder does not take such action, you will claim a price reduction and/or damages.

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