Crest Nicholson
Nik's new home

It’s been a while since the last update. Not that things haven’t been
happening, but it’s been a hectic few weeks, and it wasn’t until the 15th that I got broadband access at the house. But that’s now installed (Freedom2Surf, with an ADSL router supplied by Solwise) and things are ticking along, so it’s time for another update.

Read on for more.


As described in an earlier entry, kicking off the process of taking Crest Nicholson to court has got them to move a little faster.

I received a letter from them dated the 6th September1 that says:

Please find enclosed a cheque for the sum of 3,000 as refund of retainer with regard to the above property.

and then on the 15th September (after more prompting from myself)

Please find enclosed a cheque to the value of 120 as refund for the County Court fee incurred.

They’ve now been deposited, and when the funds clear I’ll do whatever’s necessary at the MoneyClaim site to cancel the proceedings.

You’ll note that neither of these letters contain any hint of an apology, or explanation as to why Crest Nicholson breached the contract.

1 They didn’t even have the wit to date the cheque earlier, and claim that the delay was down to the post.


Snagging’s been an ongoing process.

John Lewsley, Crest Nicholson’s HomeCare Manager came over on the 6th, and we spent some time going around the house.

This included pointing out that some of our windows still don’t have insulation seals fitted. Incredibly, this is work that Crest Nicholson’s own worksheet (which they left for us to find when we moved in) showed as being complete.

John’s visit also served to highlight the duplicitous behaviour of some of Crest Nicholson’s other representatives. If you cast your mind back, you’ll recall that I wrote about getting a list of work that was required written down, agreed to, and signed by Steve Driscoll. This included:

Decoration around sockets in the study is poor — bare plaster is visible. Remove sockets, repaint, re-fix sockets.

I showed this to John (as, not to my complete lack of amazement, that work’s not been done) and he tells me that he can’t understand why Steve would sign this, as there’s no way that Crest Nicholson’s decorators ould remove sockets once they’ve been wired up.

At this point I don’t especially care whether Steve was lying when he agreed to sign the document, or John’s lying when he tells me Crest won’t do this. I just know that dealing with the mendacity is getting tiresome.

One of the other things John was supposed to do when he was here was locate and read the meters. Electric and gas meters were read with no problems. But despite searching high and low John failed to find the water meter.

I find it absolutely staggering that Crest Nicholson would send out someone to read the meters without first making absolutely sure that the person they send out knows how to find the meters. It speaks volumes about their competence.

I’m waiting for the first water bill with interest.

We walked around the house pointing out things that still weren’t

These include:

  • Missing equipment from the oven (it’s taken two attempts, as they sent the wrong size bits the first time, but Crest have now partially rectified this; we’re still waiting for the final items though).
  • A faulty extractor fan in the downstairs WC
  • Loose fittings in the shower on the top floor
  • The aforementioned missing window seals
  • Light fittings that don’t work
  • Replacing the handles on the kitchen units, many of which are loose after light use, and some have detached completely

When he left John promised me that he’d send me a full statement of the work that Crest Nicholson are due to carry out when they visit on the 27th. That was almost two weeks ago. Despite repeated chasing, it’s not been forthcoming. Just another commitment that Crest Nicholson have, so far, failed to honour.

Stop Press

We had Crest Nicholson’s electricians, Riley McLaren, in the other week, to comission the telephone extension sockets after BT had enabled the master socket.

This took some chasing from Crest Nicholson, who eventually decided it was something they’d do. The letter said:

I have spoken with your Homecare Manager John Lewsley and
he advised that Crest Nicholson only hard wire extention(sic) sockets which is something that should have been explained to you by our Sales Department. However, on this occasion as a gesture of goodwill we will instruct our Electricians Riley & Mc CLaren (sic) to contact you to make arrangements.

There are four extension sockets on the ground floor, and one on the first floor.

At the moment, only one of them works…