This will be only the second bad review that I have published and it was very bad, and yet if this company Extend A Home Pty. Limited had an ounce of integrity this review would not have been written, as I'm a very reasonable person and would have been happy to negotiate an outcome that would have been much better for both of us, but this company management was not willing to do that, because of selfish inconsideration and lack of any real empathy for the suffering that they put my wife and myself through during this building renovation, I would not wish anyone else to go through the stress and trauma that we have endured with the named company.
This Home renovation was a major construction of an upper-level addition to the existing house, with the full cost close to $400,000.00, not an inconsiderable amount indeed, involving the strengthening of five walls of the house, all of which made this a very stressful ordeal when you are still trying to live in the house at the same time.
At the beginning of discussions with the Contracts Manager for Extend A Home, I let it be known that this was going to be a very stressful ordeal for me to go through and he acknowledged that and seemed to show some empathy saying don't worry Alan you are not going to be alone that we can work together to make it less uncomfortable, that we can work things out together to make it easier, so that made me feel a little more confident going ahead with this project.
The first two days of the build the scaffolders came and erected the scaffolding around the house, on the third day I was not expecting any workers at my house as I had not been informed by the builder, so at about 9:00am I decided to go for a walk to a nearby park and relax for a while, but when I came back at around 10:30am there were two cars and a trailer parked outside on the street (this was the two Roof Cavity cleaners), a young man had his head looking out from a gap in the roof tiles smiling at me all the time which seemed a little strange and an older man met me at my front lawn and said ''What are you going to do with these Batts'' these old Batts were still packaged insulation batts which they had thrown down onto the front lawn, I said ''Well they have to go'' (they were R2 rated and I wanted new higher rated batts) he said ''Give me $300.00 and I will take them away for you'', I didn't like his attitude at all, he was very abrupt, pushy and not particularly friendly, I said ''Let me think about that'', he said ''You better make up your mind quick because I'll only be here for another hour'', I said ''Just let me think about it and I'll let you know'', I walked back outside a few minutes later, and he said ''What are you going to do with them'' I said ''I'm still thinking about it'' he said ''Ok I'll do it for a $100.00'' I said ''Let me think about that'', he said ''What is it is the money the problem'' in an arrogant manner, so I said ''What about $50.00'' he said ''I can't do it for $50.00 they are heavy'', I said ''Not that heavy'' and lifted one pack up and I said again ''Let me think about it'', I remember feeling uncomfortable about his character and thinking that I should be careful and watch him because I knew that there was a manhole into the garage from the roof ceiling cavity where I had a lot of new property stored on shelving in there which I had recently purchased for that purpose, so we could clear the five walls that needed to be strengthened in the house, when I went back in the house I rang the building construction supervisor and told him what happened and he told me not to worry about them as he will be organising a rubbish skip to be placed in my front yard and the Batts can go in the skip, so I told the roof cavity cleaner to just leave them.
To try to keep this brief, the roof cavity cleaners came through the manhole in the garage and stole over $5,000.00 worth of property (including tools, brand new kitchen appliances, new astronomical telescope $400.00 which was going to be my new hobby when I retire in a couple of years and even clothing my wife's and my own that was packed away in special canvas storage containers) from the garage shelving, I had gone into the garage through the back laundry door to check and noticed that one side of the architrave around the manhole was broken off and was lying on the garage floor, I decided that maybe it fell off from the vibration of the industrial vacuum cleaner they were using and not to make a fuss over a small thing and to ask the building construction supervisor to arrange for it to be fixed next time I saw him, but just about one hour later I went back in the garage and observed that the broken off architrave strip had been roughly put back-up on the ceiling again, which was strange but I thought well good they have fixed up again although it was hanging loose on one end by about half an inch, which proved that they had been in the garage via the manhole and had broken that strip off when entering the garage.
No other workers were at my house on that day only the Roof Cavity cleaners, about another hour after the architrave strip was replaced I was sitting at my computer in the rear sunroom and through the partially opened blinds saw a person walk down the side of my house and stop about two metres from the sunroom and appeared to be trying to look at me through the blinds, walked away and came back a second time to the same position and stopped again, I could just see the shape standing there and wondered why they were at the back of my house, unfortunately and to my great regret I did not investigate this strange behaviour, I tried to justify it by telling myself maybe the scaffolders had come back to work again, only in hindsight now I realise it was the younger Roof Cavity cleaner making sure that I was occupied at the rear of my house, most likely so he could move some of the stolen things to his car.
With an industrial vacuum cleaner and the roof space being a smaller than average size this should have only been a half day job for them, but they were here the whole day, and as it had been quiet for a couple of hours I assumed that they had finished, but when I checked at about 5:30pm the younger man was just standing under my front carport, I said ''Have you finished'' he said in broken English ''No I come back tomorrow'' I said ''Are you Russian'' he said ''No I come from Germany I'm on a twelve month work Visa'' he said ''Can I leave the vacuum machine under the carport'' I said ''Ok no problem'' as he was leaving I noticed the ladder leaning against the carport that they had used to access the roof cavity and I ran over to his SUV and said ''Is that your ladder'' pointing to the carport he said ''Yes It belong to my boss'' I said ''I wouldn't leave it there overnight as someone might steal it'' he got out of his car and I said ''You can leave it behind my side gate for more security''
The next morning I went into my garage and noticed all the shelving that was full before was now half empty, I called the police and the first thing they said was have you got CCTV I said no I told them everything that happened the broken architrave strip and the person walking down the side of my house on two occasions within a few minutes, they took notes and said that they will arrange for the fingerprint section to check the garage but as they would have been wearing gloves it's probably a waste of time, subsequently the fingerprint section found nothing, and although I gave a comprehensive statement to the police without solid evidence they to my disappointment could do nothing.
I spoke with the Contracts Manager of Extend A Home about this incident and my stolen property, he seemed sympathetic and to understand the distress I felt over my losses which were quite significant, he said ''Don't worry Alan we will work something out'' but that verbal empathy was the only thing that the company was prepared to work out for me, I was expecting that the company would take some responsibility for the workers that it had sub-contracted to work on my house, but the management decided that it would take no responsibility at all, putting it back on me that I should have secured my property better, the front garage roller door was always locked as was the back laundry door except when my wife or myself were in there, I believe that should have been secure enough for my part. This company should have insurance to cover for situations such as this, but they didn't want to assume any responsibility at all and then the Contracts Manager who I had kept informed at all times about the police progress on this matter said ''The police could do nothing and you spoke with your local member and they could do nothing'' so his attitude seemed to be because they could do nothing that Extend A Home management also needn't do anything about it, I said ''Not correct that my local member said to contact them again if I got no response from management and the senior constable who attended my home told me to keep chasing the builder up to resolve the matter.
The end result was that Extend A Home management took no responsibility for the workers under their control and just turned a blind eye to the incident and the stress and suffering that my wife and I had to endure as for months later we kept realising more items that had been stolen, then a few months later during the renovation I was compelled to call the police a second time when other items were pilfered from inside my home by other workers employed by this company, including part of my special coin collection, again I informed the Contracts Manager who seemed to be frustrated that I was bothering him again with these complaints, on the second occasion the senior constable said ''It's a shame that you can't trust people who come to work in your house but try to keep an eye on them''
Sum-up: From this company presume no integrity and no accountability!
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