Scaffolders downed tools and clambered into a hot tub at a storm-damaged home they were working on – even drinking the owner’s beer.
David Wright, from Irby in Merseyside, received a call from panicked neighbours saying men were in the tub.
The 45-year-old and his family are staying in a cramped bungalow while tradesmen worked on his home after part of the roof blew off during Storm Arwen in November.
Seven months on the damage is still not fixed and David says the hot tub incident, which saw the lid damaged and bottle tops scattered over his lawn, is the tip of the ice berg.
Builders also took down the wrong ceiling and fitted the wrong type of roof, he said.
Following the storm and a number of phone calls to his home insurance provider, Zurich, he moved his family into a small bungalow in Springfield, a number of miles away from his home for what he was told would be “four months max”.
But now David and his family appear to be no closer to moving back into their home.
David said: “It’s almost as if I’m working for them trying to sort my own insurance policy out. They’re supposed to be working for me.
“I made a complaint straight away on December 12 because I had reservations initially. The builders came round to survey the roof four times and didn’t even get out of the van.”
David, along with partner Nicola, 45, and their two children, Lewis, 10, and Lauren, seven, are living in a cramped bungalow with little-to-no garden space compared to their family home that has a garden and space for Lewis to play football.
David said: “They took the wrong ceiling down in the house. They haven’t taken any of the wet plasterboards down. The flat roof that they put on it is wrong. There are all kinds of different problems. The emotional stress and heartache has been horrendous. I am honestly so close to just breaking.
“We’ve been let down time and time again. I rang up the project manager at the time [the scaffolders went in the hot tub] to say that someone had been in the hot tub and that my neighbour had witnessed it and that they believe it was the scaffolders. I came back and the hot tub lid was up and damaged.
“On the hot tub you have wind straps to keep it down, they were all open so I rang the sub-contractors and they told me to phone the police if I thought it was a problem. I even have photos of the beer caps on the decking from where they’ve drank beer out of the fridge.”
A spokesperson for Zurich Insurance Group said: “We are very sorry to hear about the problems Mr Wright has faced in relation to the claim for damage to his roof. The delays and some of the service he has experienced falls short of the high standards we pride ourselves on. We have issued a compensation payment of £350 in recognition of this.
“Following a meeting yesterday, we have agreed a way forward to address the outstanding works required to Mr Wright’s home. We are also conducting a full investigation into some of the contractors used, to ensure that those hired on behalf of Zurich, provide the best and most professional service possible.”