The highest complaint is the contractor’s failure to go after the agreements, next to unsatisfactory services and careless workmanship.
The Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE) has garnered a total number of 1,269 complaints against the contractors doing house renovations in year 2016 and a total of 719 complaints for the first seven months of year 2017, according to Channel News Asia in their report.
The industry got the 4th highest number of objections here in the previous year and is among the top ten industries with the greatest amount of complaints over the 10 years. The top complaint is the contractor’s failure to follow contracts, followed by disappointing services or shoddy workmanship.
As stated by Loy York Jiun, the CASE Executive Director, they have successfully resolved around 60 percent of filed cases. Around 23 percent of the petitioner pursued their case through the Small Claims Tribunals, whereas the rest of them looked for legal advice or utilized other methods to fix their issues.
One reason for the high number of complaints is that, it’s easy to register and launch a renovation firm here, mentioned Dean Lim, the Singapore’s Vice President of Renovation Contractors and Material Suppliers Association (RCMA).
In a populous industry, competition is inflexible and some renovation companies are forced to lesser their prices just to secure and protect jobs.
“Without a tolerable income, these companies who cheapen prices without a solid financial background will finally run into debts and be not able to find better subcontractors to finish the jobs – or worse, rest and go vanish in action,” Mr. Lim uttered.
To defend themselves, Loy York Jiun advised homeowners to make certain that the contractor is registered with the Housing Board. They might also acknowledge hiring one credited by the Case Trust for it would be easier to resolve some arguments. Furthermore, it’s not sensible to make complete payment in advance.
Mr. Adrian Wee, a respected attorney who controlled the court cases concerning renovation issues, recommended homeowners to do their own research and investigation about the work involved rather than entrusting it completely to a contractor.
“If you don’t do your homework, you won’t have the knowledge to examine. You have to obtain adequate knowledge, in order for you to not be taken advantage of.”
In the meantime, Lim advised choosing renovation contractors that propose a deposit performance bond, which guards a homeowner’s deposit payment counter to opening of contract along with liquidation, closure as well as winding up of the contractor.