It is fortunate the judge took the time to find where the problems lay and also decide the outcomes (GP Surveyors).
In June 2003, Mr. Simon Davenport and Mrs. Angelika Davenport, husband and wife, engaged the services of a small and untried building contractor called TL Construction (UK) Ltd. ("TL") to carry out plastering, wiring and other such refurbishment work in their beautiful stucco terrace leasehold house located in Knightsbridge, SW3.
Mrs. Davenport was in charge of all the work being carried out by TL. While she left the technical aspect of the work to TL, she provided most of the management needed to keep the work going through day to day close personal involvement and continuous monitoring of the finished product. Mrs. Davenport also looked after the co-ordination of the work of the building contractor with the directly engaged specialists.
The work was done without any builder's specification. Mr. David Jones, surveyor and principal to Design Group Nine Ltd provided limited supervisory services. The work was paid for at cost and in cash and there was no defined contractual period or completion date or any clear definition of the specialist work such as the electrical work, plastering, joinery or painting work.
After having paid a substantial amount and not satisfied with the work, they terminated their contract with TL nine months later during Easter 2004. The Davenports had paid out 147,000 and this amount was in excess of what had been quoted at the outset and the work was still significantly incomplete.
The Davenports were unhappy with most of the work, particularly waterproofing and electrical works done by TL. They began to despair when the work kept dragging on even after nine months!
The plastering and waterproofing was not only substandard but also erratic.
Some weeks before terminating the contract with TL, the Davenports had engaged Monavon, following an introduction from Mr. David Jones, to install a new conservatory extension at the rear of the house. When the contract with TL ended on a sour note, Mr. Davenport invited Mr. Ian McGowan, Monavon's principal, to inspect the works and indicate how much he would charge for remedying the defective work left by TL. The work was to be done to a very high standard. Mr. Davenport also obtained quotations from two other contractors. He did not disclose this to Monavon. Mr. McGowan gave Mr. Davenport what he contends was a provisional guide price of about 100,000 which was less than half what the other two contractors had quoted. Mr. Davenport therefore decided to engage Monavon.
Monavon carried out the work between April and September 2004.
It was not to Davenports' satisfaction. The work by McGowan also took more time than was anticipated. It not only took more time, but the payments to be made were more than what the Davenports were ready to pay.
Basically, there were three works that needed to be done. They were electrical work,