Episode 7 Cowboys and Angels


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Episode 7

Series following tradesmen and looking at cowboy contractors. Plumber Wes and his apprentice Brett help out pensioner Robert when water starts gushing through his ceiling.


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-When a crisis strikes your home...

-How can I help?

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I've got a bit of an emergency.

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..or you want major work done...

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It was our dream.

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It is a total mess.

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..you need one of the good guys but you don't always get 'em.

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I've never seen anything like this.

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Potentially, I stand to lose the house.

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We'll hear the stories of devastation and despair

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left behind when building work doesn't go to plan.

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He didn't put the foundations all the way around,

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-so that the front bit didn't have any foundation.

-What?

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And we'll tell you how to avoid becoming a victim yourself.

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Did you have a comparison price?

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But most tradesmen are there to help.

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And we'll follow the response teams who are there for you 24 hours a day...

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Eventually, the ceiling would have come down in the kitchen.

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..seven days a week.

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It ain't everyone's cup of tea, but most people are pleased to see you.

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From plumbers to roofers, electricians to locksmiths,

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we meet the men and women who help you out in your hour of need.

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-Coming up...

-Wowee!

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A homeowner tries to save his home from flooding

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when water starts gushing through the ceiling.

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So for about ten minutes, I had my finger in it.

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Gas engineer Chris is answering a vicar's prayers to

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save his congregation from a pew-side silent killer.

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We had a lot of carbon monoxide issues.

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Plus we talk to one homeowner whose builder took her money

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but failed to deliver her dream home.

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I've got no kitchen. I've got no bathroom. I've got no stairs.

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Where has £40,000-odd gone?

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Where indeed.

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Well, keep watching, because Elaine's builder agreed to meet me

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and in an extraordinary interview, he gives his side of the story.

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We didn't want to rip Elaine off. It could have been resolved.

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Invite somebody into the sanctity of your home to do a job

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and hope you'll both be happy with the result.

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But sometimes, relationships can break down

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and things can get out of hand.

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In Doncaster, Elaine Ormston bought her bungalow in February 2013.

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With some careful planning, dormer bedrooms and a rejig downstairs,

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it was to become a dream home for her and her daughter Megan.

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But over 40 grand later, her builder left it in such a state,

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she had to get a second mortgage just to put it right.

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It were quite exciting to think that we could actually have a project,

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to get the bedrooms put upstairs, have the space,

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and be in a better financial position, be able to do things,

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go on holiday, and not be struggling and see Megan through uni.

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Single mum Elaine divorced from Megan's father 15 years ago

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and it had taken that long to get to the stage

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where she could finally afford the home she wanted for her daughter.

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Well, it might look like an interior designer's dream now,

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but it's taken a second mortgage

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and 18 months of hell just to put right the job one builder started.

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It's just been a constant struggle, not being able to do...

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go out anywhere, not being able to have a holiday.

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If there was any spare money, it had to go on...on getting the house done.

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Elaine was left in the terrible position of having to

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complete the work started by her builder.

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3.5 months after buying her dream home, she was £43,000 down, with a

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broken shell of a house, no kitchen, no bathroom, and a leaking roof.

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She had no choice but to confront her builder.

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"You've had £40,000-odd off me."

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I've got no kitchen, I've got no bathroom, I've got no stairs,

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I've got no roof, I've got no electric.

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Where has £40,000-odd gone?

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That's what I've come to Doncaster to try and discover.

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-Hello.

-Hi.

-Pleased to meet you.

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First of all, tell me what you originally wanted,

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what you planned for, what did you hope to get?

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To convert the two-bedroomed bungalow into a dormer bungalow with

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two bedrooms upstairs and possibly,

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-originally from the original plans, a bathroom or a shower.

-Upstairs?

-Yeah.

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-Right. So basically, you were going to create another floor?

-Yes.

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And the bedrooms down here were going to be something else, then?

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Yes. One of the bedrooms is part of the kitchen

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and the other bedroom was the bathroom.

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OK, but you was quite specific about what you wanted to achieve from it?

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Yeah, yeah. We knew exactly what we wanted.

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Right, so these are the original drawings.

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Let me just have a quick look.

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Well, that's ticked the first box, so you've done that correctly.

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Got the drawings done, yes. It's very detailed.

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They give all the dormer heights and positions. OK.

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Right, now, how did you get the contractor that you selected?

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-Did you get half a dozen estimates and pick him out?

-No.

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-He was known to the family for a number of years.

-What, as a builder?

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As a friend.

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So although Elaine didn't do many company checks,

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she did know her builder and felt confident with him.

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They agreed that he'd build a loft extension with two bedrooms

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and a shower and also a small extension downstairs to make

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the kitchen and bathroom bigger.

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She'd stay with her sister and move back in after a month

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when the major work was done.

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You gave him, um, a sort of a fixed-price,

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a maximum that you could go to? Was that how you agreed?

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I said originally, "I need to know a set figure.

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"If you over-budget on everything,

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"take it to the worst-case scenario and give me a figure

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"so that I know that when you walk away from here, everything is going to be done."

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It's an unusual way to do things but if you told him what

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your maximum outlay could have been, then at least he had a guideline.

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He said "£40,000, - everything that you want doing and all you have to do

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"when we walk away from here is a little bit of decorating."

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Happy with the price quoted, Elaine went ahead.

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And he said he would just ring me as and when he wanted the money.

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If we did it in £4,000 slots, it would cover the kitchen,

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-the bathroom, the wages.

-Was you OK with that?

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Didn't you think that was a bit strange?

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It's a bit like going into a restaurant, really,

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to have a three-course meal and then you pay some money up front.

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Would you go to a restaurant and do that,

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if someone said to you, "This is how I want you to pay"?

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-What would you say?

-It is silly.

-No, it's not silly.

-It is silly.

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-It's something that people do every day in this country.

-Yeah.

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And what I'm trying to do is find out, in a way,

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why people keep making the same mistakes and it's purely when

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it comes to doing something major on their house.

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Always the way to control any situation when it comes to building is the purse strings.

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You know, whoever has the money calls the tune.

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'Sadly, Elaine learned this lesson too late.'

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-Did you pay by cheque, or...?

-No, cash. He wanted it in cash.

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You paid by cash.

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With no paper trail, customers can sometimes find it hard to prove what they've paid.

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Cheques or credit cards are better but however you choose to pay,

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what's important is to draw up a payment plan,

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agree the stages of the build, and only pay in instalments

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when every job's been completed successfully.

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Good builders will be happy to work like this

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and the Citizens Advice Bureau has some great tips if you need help.

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By now, Elaine was beginning to realise that her dreams

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of moving in by Easter were fading fast.

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Having bought the house in February 2013

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and with no sign of the loft roof by March, she confronted her builder.

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He blamed the poor weather and late delivery of roof trusses.

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Kitchen had not appeared, the bathroom had not appeared.

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Just nothing was getting done.

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The builder told Elaine that the Council had put a stop to the loft

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work because of concerns over the dormers being higher than permitted.

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Elaine rang the Council

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and although they agreed the work could continue,

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they would have to look into planning permission

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but by then in May 2013, it seemed things had stalled indefinitely.

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And as I'll hear later,

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-they were about to get worse before they got better.

-I wasn't sleeping.

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I started suffering with anxiety and panic attacks. Um, I was exhausted.

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I was just drained.

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And Elaine's builder has his say too.

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It could have been resolved. We could have carried on and we could have got the job done

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and it would have been put to bed.

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Every day in the UK, the insurance industry pays out £2.5 million

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to homeowners who suffered damage due to burst pipes and water leaks.

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These are expensive and problematic.

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There's the cost of locating and accessing the leak,

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repairing the pipe and the damage caused.

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The average clean-up cost can be up to £8,000.

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And it's the job of experienced tradespeople to help out

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homeowners when they are faced with this sort of crisis.

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Today, veteran plumber Wesley and his apprentice Brett

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are called to a suspected burst water pipe in Battersea.

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We're going to see a Mr Barker now.

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Apparently, he's got quite a big flood coming through his ceiling, coming through downstairs.

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I understand he's panicking a little bit,

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so we need to get in there quick and get it sorted out.

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Come on, my Brettsie.

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-Hello, Mr Barker. I notice your hair is wet. Is that from...

-Yes, yes.

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Is that from here, is it?

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They head straight upstairs where water has been overflowing

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from a tank in the loft, flooding the bathroom at an alarming rate.

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Stopping a leak can cost just a plumber's callout fee

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but if the leak gets worse,

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repairs to a damaged ceiling can run into thousands.

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It's pouring straight through. I can hear it still going now.

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I'll just jump up there and have a look. Wow!

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-How long is it been going for?

-Oh, about an hour.

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Oh, well. We need to get that off, don't we?

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Brett, can you go downstairs with Mr Barker and see

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if there's a stopcock underneath the kitchen sink, please?

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The water supply needs to be cut off as quickly as possible to

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stop this leak becoming a full-blown disaster.

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It's already flooded the kitchen and the floor below.

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If water's dripped into your electric sockets as it has here,

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or if it comes through your light fittings,

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turn off the electrics at the mains immediately.

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Just remove the whole table.

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Robert Barker and his disabled wife have lived in the house for 32 years.

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A problem like this is the very last thing that they needed.

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At first, I thought it was just ordinary plumbing noises,

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or maybe at the worst, somebody had left a tap on and the plug in.

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But when I went upstairs,

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I found it wasn't that and it was water coming down from the ceiling.

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Er...

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The tank in the loft supplies water to the whole house.

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Robert's managed to slow the flow gushing through

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but he hasn't stopped it.

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OK, so what's happened, yeah, is a flow valve inside the tank has

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stopped working, so it's not shutting the water off any more.

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In effect, what that's doing is filling up the tank to a level

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where it's overflowing.

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Though the reason why this is come through here, and poured

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straight through the house is because the overflow is not connected.

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Now that is such a common thing, you know,

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such an important part of the system that usually gets forgotten or

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gets knocked off or something like that

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and what happens is you get this result where it just pours through the house.

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It comes straight through and makes a hell of a mess.

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Wes has managed to reconnect the overflow

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so the water's gushing outside the house instead of inside

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but he still needs to fix the fault.

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To try to prevent a small leak getting out of control,

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look for warning signs.

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Such as water bills suddenly rising,

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or water marks on your brickwork or walls of your house.

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How you getting on down there?

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Later, as the boys head back downstairs into the kitchen,

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the extent of the damage is clear.

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Came through here, obviously, as well. Crikey!

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It's a nightmare, innit?

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And the clean-up operation begins.

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Back in Doncaster, Elaine and her daughter Megan had no choice

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but to move out of Elaine's sister's home into their unfinished bungalow.

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I could no longer afford me furniture to be in storage,

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but, like I say, we had no electric, no lights.

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We'd got a few sockets that worked.

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We were lucky that it was summer months.

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Megan was 16 at that stage.

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We were having to share one bedroom

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because her bedroom was just literally a shell.

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The roof was leaking in because the tiles weren't on there.

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But we just had to make the best of it.

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And by then, three and a half months into the build,

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the stress was really taking its toll.

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Towards the end, I wasn't sleeping, I started suffering with anxiety

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and panic attacks, um...I was just exhausted. I was just drained.

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Physically and mentally, I think it was just too much.

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Having already had tens of thousands of pounds from her,

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Elaine's builder was demanding another £2,000 to finish the work.

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Enough was enough and Elaine decided to cut her losses

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and get another contractor in.

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I don't blame her, but if you're concerned about the work

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your builder's doing, go to Trading Standards.

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They'll give you advice on how to handle it

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and might even take on your case for you.

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Oh, this is nice. It's a bit compact, but it's lovely, isn't it?

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So you got another contractor in to finish it off

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and was it £20,000 you had to pay for that?

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I had to take a second mortgage of £16,000, which obviously,

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I was in debt for solicitors' fees,

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I'd borrowed money to pay for the kitchen

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and get somebody else to fit the kitchen.

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And obviously, we did need to use some savings,

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which was about £4,500, so it has cost about another £20,000.

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-You spent £64,000 to get to this stage?

-Yeah.

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-And you should've only paid 40.

-Yeah.

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-I'd like to find out why.

-So would I.

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'So as well as paying her builder £43,000

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'in regular instalments for his unfinished work,

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'Elaine then had to take out a second mortgage of £16,000

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'and use £4,500 in savings to buy a kitchen

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'and get another builder to finish off the whole job.

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'So more than £63,000 in total

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'for two small bedrooms and a loo in the loft

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'and a downstairs extension for a kitchen and bathroom.'

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He's probably an ex-family friend now, I would think,

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but what would you say to him, if you had a chance to speak to him,

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what would you say to him right now?

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Why? Why do it?

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He actually made out to me as if my house would be like a little palace.

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He was given the chance a number of times to explain

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why the work wasn't being done.

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You know, why...why do it?

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'Elaine has spoken out so others don't make the same mistake she did.

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'Here's what I'd say everyone needs to know before a build begins.'

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Always check out your builder's credentials,

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even if they're a friend.

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Never pay in cash.

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Generally, you won't be able to prove

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what you have and haven't paid for.

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Keep back a good portion of the money to pay at the end,

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when you're happy with the work.

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And before you start any build,

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check if you need planning permission.

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For Elaine, it's been a harsh lesson learned.

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Looking back now, I do think, "You were stupid. Why didn't you see it?"

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And I was, I suppose, lucky that I was in a situation

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where I could take a second mortgage out.

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If I hadn't have been in that situation,

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I don't know what I would've done.

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I'd have been left with a shell of a house, not able to live in it,

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with no means of being able to rectify the problem.

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'Well, my team's been in touch with Elaine's builder

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'and he wants to meet up. There's always two sides to a story,

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'so find out later what he's got to say.'

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I wanted to sit down and talk to her

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and tell her what our situation was

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and listen to her side of the story.

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While some people are clearing up the mess their contractors

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have left behind, there are plenty of tradesmen

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who spend their time helping others clean up when things go wrong.

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Plumbers Wesley and Brett are doing just that in London.

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When they arrived at Robert Barker's home,

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they found he'd taken matters into his own hands, literally,

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when water started pouring through his bathroom ceiling,

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onto the floor and through to the kitchen below.

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The overflow pipe had got disconnected,

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-so for about 10 minutes, I had my finger in it, like that.

-Oh, no!

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Well, that's panic stations then, because you don't know what to do.

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-You can't exactly take your finger off.

-No.

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-At least it's not coming through the house now.

-That's a big relief.

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With the overflow pipe temporarily reconnected, the water's now

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safely flowing into the garden and not through the ceiling.

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But the electrical appliances are soaked and not safe to use.

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Now I've got to find the phone number for the insurance company,

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see what they can do.

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Yeah. Yeah, that'll be the best bet.

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And I always say, if you want to take some photographs of the damage

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so they know before we tidy it up.

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We can help you tidy this stuff up here if you need us to.

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-Right, yes.

-Look after you a bit.

-Yeah.

0:18:020:18:05

In fact, Brett, can you go and get the wet vac in here

0:18:050:18:07

and just help this gentleman tidy up all these bits.

0:18:070:18:10

There's a couple of rags out there, as well.

0:18:100:18:12

Your home insurer may well cover you for leaks and burst pipes

0:18:150:18:19

and will want to send a loss adjustor to assess the situation.

0:18:190:18:23

Taking photographs of the damage is advisable

0:18:230:18:25

and it's worth calling your insurer early to see if you'll be covered.

0:18:250:18:30

And as Brett rolls up his sleeves to clean up Robert's house,

0:18:310:18:34

Wesley finds something he hopes will put an end to the flooding.

0:18:340:18:37

The new part.

0:18:390:18:41

-How you doing, mate?

-A new float valve isn't expensive.

0:18:410:18:45

Usually £20-£50.

0:18:450:18:47

But you need to factor in your plumber's labour, or callout charge,

0:18:470:18:50

the time they take to do the repair and the amount of damage caused.

0:18:500:18:54

You've got a mechanism in here which stops the water.

0:18:540:18:57

As soon as the float valve registers that the water level is sufficient,

0:18:570:19:01

it'll push the needle in and shut the water off completely.

0:19:010:19:05

So what's happened in there, obviously,

0:19:050:19:07

something's gone faulty inside, just keeps coming out,

0:19:070:19:09

keeps coming out and this is why we have this overflow pipe up here.

0:19:090:19:13

And, er...which has gone faulty,

0:19:130:19:14

which is why the guy had his finger stuck in the hole,

0:19:140:19:17

trying to stop the water from coming through.

0:19:170:19:19

Usually, that'd be poured outside and it wouldn't be a problem.

0:19:190:19:22

Cor, that's tight!

0:19:220:19:24

Offending article removed and a new valve fitted,

0:19:240:19:28

Wesley gets on with gluing the overflow pipe in place.

0:19:280:19:31

If the tank ever overfills again, water will flow down the pipe,

0:19:320:19:36

into the garden, and not flood the house.

0:19:360:19:39

This is really common, especially on old systems like this,

0:19:390:19:42

when people have been up in the loft space

0:19:420:19:44

and the overflow gets knocked,

0:19:440:19:46

or someone who's not really that competent has not connected it right

0:19:460:19:49

and it's just...it can just destroy places.

0:19:490:19:53

I've been to places where it's, like,

0:19:530:19:55

the house is floating down the street.

0:19:550:19:57

Right, all the taps are off, mate, I'll go down and turn the mains on.

0:19:570:20:01

Plumbing finished, they make sure the house is shipshape.

0:20:010:20:06

-Bring the Hoover down, my old son, yeah?

-Yeah.

0:20:060:20:09

And also, if you can, put this trap hatch up for him.

0:20:090:20:12

And rookie Brett gets all the best jobs. Cleaning up and clearing out.

0:20:140:20:19

And if you want to stop a potential leak before it's too late,

0:20:200:20:23

make sure your float valve isn't caked up by limescale.

0:20:230:20:27

Your overflow pipe is connected

0:20:270:20:30

and if you do have a flood,

0:20:300:20:31

take plenty of photos of the damage before you tidy up.

0:20:310:20:35

Your insurance company will need them.

0:20:350:20:37

Thanks for coming and saving the day.

0:20:370:20:39

That's all right. It's my pleasure to help out.

0:20:390:20:43

Job done.

0:20:430:20:45

And the dynamic duo are off to their next plumbing emergency.

0:20:450:20:48

-Take care. Any problems...

-Thank you very much.

-Thank you.

-See you.

0:20:490:20:52

In the UK, 40 people die every year from carbon monoxide poisoning.

0:21:040:21:09

It's a silent killer that comes from boilers, cookers,

0:21:090:21:13

or radiators running on gas or oil.

0:21:130:21:17

Appliances which many of us have in our homes.

0:21:170:21:20

Carbon monoxide poisoning can happen when gas doesn't burn properly

0:21:200:21:24

because appliances are either faulty, or poorly ventilated.

0:21:240:21:29

It's colourless and you can't smell or taste it,

0:21:290:21:32

but if you regularly suffer nausea and headaches

0:21:320:21:35

only when you're near these appliances, you may have a problem.

0:21:350:21:39

In London, gas engineer Chris Teal has been called out to deal with

0:21:410:21:46

a church heater which has been leaking deadly carbon monoxide,

0:21:460:21:50

putting the congregation at risk.

0:21:500:21:52

Thankfully, he spotted it during a routine safety check.

0:21:520:21:55

We had a lot of carbon monoxide issues.

0:21:560:21:59

We ended up actually repairing nine of the heaters.

0:21:590:22:02

It was only the one we're installing today, um...

0:22:020:22:05

that we couldn't do anything with.

0:22:050:22:08

Just pop that down there, I think, for now.

0:22:080:22:11

The dangerous heater has already been disconnected

0:22:110:22:14

and it's vital Chris gets a new one in as soon as possible.

0:22:140:22:19

It's not going to be a quick job, no.

0:22:190:22:21

There's going to be differences with installing the new unit,

0:22:210:22:25

conform to the relevant regulations

0:22:250:22:28

and quite often, in some cases,

0:22:280:22:31

it can be very, very challenging.

0:22:310:22:33

It's a very heavy appliance, so I've got help today.

0:22:330:22:38

So just pop it in just there and we'll just mark up the gas pipe.

0:22:400:22:43

The guys are working swiftly.

0:22:430:22:45

The old heater's been removed, we've found that the gas supply

0:22:450:22:49

just down here, the old one, is no good.

0:22:490:22:53

We'd have to cut the back of the new unit

0:22:530:22:56

and we don't want to do that, so it's better

0:22:560:22:59

to drill a new hole in a different location

0:22:590:23:02

and just rerun the gas supply.

0:23:020:23:05

It will look a lot nicer, a lot neater and give us

0:23:050:23:08

a little bit more room, as well.

0:23:080:23:09

And Vicar Christopher Hobbs appreciates how important it is

0:23:090:23:13

to have a qualified gas engineer who knows exactly what he's doing.

0:23:130:23:16

Get that unit as close to the wall as possible.

0:23:160:23:19

He'll know where the heaters are, what the problem is.

0:23:190:23:22

He'll be good at repairing them, rather than just saying,

0:23:220:23:25

"It's condemned, we need a new one."

0:23:250:23:27

He'll be sensible about what things we really need to do

0:23:270:23:30

and what things should be done soon.

0:23:300:23:33

Where gas is concerned, it's more important than ever

0:23:360:23:39

to make sure your tradesman is properly qualified.

0:23:390:23:42

Choose someone on the Gas Safe Register.

0:23:420:23:44

Check your appliances once a year

0:23:440:23:47

and buy a carbon monoxide detector.

0:23:470:23:49

They cost about £20 and you can get them from any DIY store.

0:23:490:23:52

-Job done.

-There we go. That is it. All done.

0:23:550:23:59

The congregation in this church has had a lucky escape.

0:23:590:24:02

And it's all in a day's work for Chris.

0:24:020:24:04

We like to help people, it's not all about chasing the biggest

0:24:040:24:08

clients, it's doing the best job you can.

0:24:080:24:10

One workman accused of not doing his best is Elaine Ormston's builder.

0:24:170:24:22

He was hired to fit a new loft and rejig her bungalow in Doncaster,

0:24:220:24:26

but he never finished the work.

0:24:260:24:28

Well, I've been doing a bit of research,

0:24:280:24:30

and I've found that he's dissolved four companies,

0:24:300:24:33

and has four county court judgements against him.

0:24:330:24:37

He's agreed to meet me,

0:24:370:24:38

but he's asked that we don't show his face or name him.

0:24:380:24:42

I kick off by asking him how he would justify demanding

0:24:420:24:45

a final £2,000 from Elaine, when the work wasn't halfway done.

0:24:450:24:51

If you couldn't finish the job for £43,500,

0:24:510:24:56

and she said there was 50% left,

0:24:560:24:58

if that was the case, how was you able to do it for £2,000?

0:24:580:25:02

We didn't want to rip Elaine off.

0:25:020:25:06

No way we wanted to do that.

0:25:060:25:08

We wanted £2,000 to buy the materials

0:25:080:25:12

so we could finish the job off.

0:25:120:25:13

That's how close to the end of the job that we thought we were at.

0:25:130:25:17

The builder said the work only stalled because of the issue

0:25:170:25:20

over the dormers being higher than expected.

0:25:200:25:23

Something he says was caused by the roof's trusses or pitch being

0:25:230:25:27

the wrong dimensions.

0:25:270:25:28

And if the trusses were wrong, slightly wrong...

0:25:280:25:32

-They were slightly wrong...

-That would maintain the justification...

0:25:320:25:35

Justify the complaint - technically, we're talking about here -

0:25:350:25:39

so then if we go to responsibility for that, it would be the truss,

0:25:390:25:44

-the guy who made the trusses, who actually was in your employ.

-Yes.

0:25:440:25:50

So that would come round and land back on your lap,

0:25:500:25:52

as a contractor, you know that.

0:25:520:25:55

Everybody ended up getting uptight about it.

0:25:550:25:59

Which ended up in the job stopping temporarily,

0:25:590:26:04

while it all got sorted out.

0:26:040:26:06

Well, how did this affect the overall job?

0:26:060:26:10

It delayed it, because it had to go back into planning for some reasons

0:26:100:26:14

regarding the roof and whatever, these dormers.

0:26:140:26:17

On top of the delay, the house was open to the elements

0:26:170:26:20

because the builder didn't feel able to fit a temporary roof.

0:26:200:26:24

But he says Elaine wanted work to carry on regardless,

0:26:240:26:27

so they had to things in the wrong order.

0:26:270:26:30

Working on the inside of the house before the outside was secure.

0:26:300:26:34

Elaine asked us to go back to the job, but we couldn't work on the

0:26:340:26:38

outside, on the roof, or whatever - we could only do some internal works.

0:26:380:26:42

And at that time, that's when things started to get...

0:26:430:26:46

-..a bit fractured between us.

-Right, so...

0:26:490:26:53

It wasn't going as quick as what Elaine wanted it to do.

0:26:530:26:56

You feel that you're unjustly being accused of being

0:26:560:27:00

the perpetrator of the problem?

0:27:000:27:02

But it seems there's a little bit of a trail of damage behind you, you know?

0:27:020:27:06

And I'm wondering whether it's you, or whether it could have been

0:27:060:27:09

circumstances that cause these things?

0:27:090:27:13

All we asked Elaine for was £2,000.

0:27:130:27:16

I think if, at the end of the day, Elaine would have sat down with us

0:27:160:27:21

and just talk about the situation that we was in,

0:27:210:27:24

then whether we got the £2,000 off her or not,

0:27:240:27:27

it could have been resolved.

0:27:270:27:29

We could have carried on and we could have got the job done,

0:27:290:27:31

and it would've been put to bed.

0:27:310:27:33

We didn't get that chance.

0:27:340:27:38

Well, maybe Elaine could've given her builder more of a hearing,

0:27:380:27:41

but by then, more than £43,000 down, she'd had enough.

0:27:410:27:46

Clearly there's two sides to every story,

0:27:480:27:50

and I've got to give the builder credit for facing up to me.

0:27:500:27:54

I just hope that both he and Elaine actually learn

0:27:540:27:56

something from this very sad situation.

0:27:560:27:58

And at least now she has the beautiful home that she always wanted.

0:28:020:28:06

Tommy tracks down Elaine's builder - and ex-family friend - to hear his side of the story, after she says she gave him more than £40,000 to convert her bungalow into a family home, but left her with no kitchen, no bathroom and no money.

Plumber Wes and his apprentice Brett help out pensioner Robert when water starts gushing through his ceiling.