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Hello all Shed Lovers

Some of you will I think remember that I opted for a shed for my birthday and I told you all I planned to decorate it royally….

I’m not sure if people put this kind of thread on this site but I’m sure someone will put me right or the admin folk will advise me if I’m doing something I shouldn’t be.
(I once reviewed a campsite we stayed at with the dirtiest showers I have ever been in – urghh I had to wear flip flops in order to stand on the floor – and the site removed it because, I conjectured, they didn’t want to upset the owners of the campsite……)

But I do think folk should know if a firm should be treated with great caution when purchasing a relatively big item like a shed.

Well the reason I have gone all quiet is because we didn’t check said shed BEFORE we started to paint the preservative on it and only then did we find quite a number of faults and damage to it.
One of the ‘faults’ is the fact that the only window – which is at the front of the shed – is wonky! This might not bother some people but it would have hit me in the eye every time I looked at it. Other boards were so thin they had warped and cracked; other bits of wood were damaged or split or had just been badly and carelessly cut…..

We bought the shed from Walton Garden Buildings which had very good reviews ON IT’S OWN SITE! Well they wouldn’t put the bad ones up would they?

So I read that if you have any problems they have a policy that aims to resolve your problem within 48 hours – I thought ‘Oh that’s good; it will be sorted as soon as possible and we can get on painting, erecting it, etc’.

Well what the company actually means by that is that they will aim to respond to any communication from you within the 48 hrs but that is it. So then you respond to whatever they have requested – photos of the damage – and they allow themselves to take another 48hrs getting to that communication…….

So the upshot of it is I still haven’t got the replacement panels for badly constructed ones and there is no sign of them coming next week!

I insisted I spoke with the customer service manager and he has been dealing with my complaint; he suggested we should have checked the shed BEFORE we painted on the expensive wood preserver all over it. I responded that surely checking for faults should be the responsibility of his company but no, they spot check only and it is written in the terms and conditions that you check your item before you expend time and money on it…………………..

Pause here while my head explodes with exasperation………………………………………………………

Did anyone else read the terms and conditions before they purchased their shed? We do if we are purchasing a car or insurance etc but a shed?

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There weren't any when we bought ours but it was made and installed by a local shop. You would never think it was necessary to check for faults like you've found would you?

6 Aug, 2017


Hollyduff- I will share my experience of purchasing my summerhouse with you in May of this year. I bought my summerhouse flat packed from Dunster House and was very cautious, despite the great reviews. (check my photo's to see what it looks like) What if some of the components were missing, or the wood was warped? I did fret but took the time to check every piece and put a clear wood preservative on each bit which took me a couple of weeks, on and off!! Found a few oozing pieces where the resin looked like honey! So I treated those with special chemicals. Despite pressure from delivery man I refused to sign delivery note confirming that I had checked whole consignement ( that would have taken all day!) Then I had a builder put it together and had to phone customer services as we came across a few anomalies whilst building it. They were not really helpful and unsurprisingly not really wiling to explain why the pitched roof was all out of sinc. In the end the builder solved it by improvising and getting a few more bits to make it work. Unfortunately I couldn't afford the ones you see at flower shows where they put it together for you. Dunster House gets all its soft wood from Eastern Europe and their sales team is quite aggressive!! I would persevere with the company,(I know you're exasperated but they aren't yet!!) and get the faulty part replaced. If they fail to do that in the end then inform Customer Servces manager that you will leave bad reviews on generic websites and even report them to ombudsman! ( you might need to improvise to rectify problem yourself in the end)
I am sorry to hear of your problems and hope to see the finished product in the not too distant future.

7 Aug, 2017


Oh crumbs, hope the company will sort it out for you soon.

If you paid on credit card (and the shed was more than £100) you can also get the credit card company to sort it out. Its know as a s75 protection.

Another thought is that you can reject the shed for a full refund because it's faulty (thank you Consumer Rights Act for that little gem) - just FYI this one only works for faults found and reported within the first 30 days after purchase.

If you want more information please feel free to ask. Otherwise you can call Citizens Advice on 03454040506 (I think). If the company are refusing to help its worth contacting Citizens Advice just so there's a record for Trading Standards. Most Authorities these days are intelligence led, so if people don't complain they don't know there's a problem. They may not help you directly but if there's multiple complaints they'll look at dealing with the company to hopefully stop the problems.

7 Aug, 2017


I'm so sorry that you are having troubles with your new shed. Remember you writing about getting it. Nothing I can add to above advise. Fingers crossed that you manage to get it sorted.

7 Aug, 2017


How sad you 've found so many faults I agree they should be checked before leaving for delivery but nowadays these big firms just don't care and always seem to know to place clauses in which tells .e they know they sell inferior goods as you would nt get these clauses at a local wood yard who build their own sheds I ve found. I am glad we have programs naming and shaming these kind of companies who try and palm us off with inferior workmanship which goes for inferior clothes that are palmed off on us as well from good named big shops who rip us of with high prices for inferior clothes and cheaply made goods.

7 Aug, 2017


Well I am really sad to read this Hollyduff. You were so looking forward to your new shed. I hope you get it sorted out. Best wishes.

7 Aug, 2017


My OH had some shoddy stuff and when he didn't get much joy he went back and stood next to the product and every time a customer looked interested in buying the product he showed them photos of ours and told them not to waste the money. he was politely asked to leave by the management but started responding in a loudish voice about the product. he got a full refund.
now admittedly OH is a big chap and looks rather 'mean/imposing' but his body language was non confrontational and he didn't lose his temper.

7 Aug, 2017


Love the idea of your OH being brave enough to confront the supplier this way SBgirl!
I bought a shed from someone who builds them locally. He came and put it up on the slabs we had laid and levelled. As it was a small avairy for Zebra Finches I had explained what I wanted and the size. It wasn't as I asked for and the hasp and staple fell off before I had even got something in it. With a wired section inside to stop them getting out when I feed, the main door warped within a few months and has dropped so that there is a gap at the top where they could get out. So.. no-one seems to build a decent shed these days, unless you have a fortune to spend - mine wasn't cheap!!
For goodness sake persevere and don't put up with being fobbed off. I think in your case I would insist on a full refund and replacement. Best of luck.

8 Aug, 2017


Hello Everyone who commented on the seemingly never ending saga of my birthday shed

I have persevered with Waltons. I must be fair and accurate and say they weren't disputing that the shed had been badly constructed because they couldn't dispute the photos I took of the faulted parts; it was more a case of a huge dollop of complacency.
It was paid for on the 12th July and I still do not have a fit for purpose shed to dilly dally and dodge out of the rain in!

The replacement panels are supposed to be coming tomorrow and I have made very clear that if they arrive and it transpires that they are also faulted; I will be having the whole lot picked up and getting a full refund.
However none of this is the point; the shed was paid for almost a month ago but I don't have one to use yet...

I know it wasn't expensive compared to what you could pay but it wasn't dirt cheap either or sold as a 'second' where you could expect and accept that it would have faults.

Never mind; I am keeping my green fingers crossed that the panels tomorrow are as they should be and the weather holds whilst we paint the preservative on again....

8 Aug, 2017


I find that paying in full for things in advance is not a good idea.
If the product turns out to be faulty they dont give a damn.
A friend who married a Polish man told me when they bought their house he insisted on only paying a deposit.
When faults occurred he soon got attention from the builders.

8 Aug, 2017


I was advised by the secretary of a VIP to always write personally to the owner or the managing director of a firm. She said usually secretaries open letters and deal with them. Any marked "personal" are handed directly to the Boss. She said that they received so little mail that they loved it when a letter actually arrived on his/her desk and they personally dealt with it.

I have followed this advice on several occasions where I have not had much help from Customer Service, but usually by e-mail.

I have contacted the then Boss of M&S . Matter dealt with 30 minutes from my email and I got a voucher to keep me quiet!

I have contacted Baroness Harding when I was with TalkTalk. She delegated my problem to a team who did all they could to help over the following week.

Boris Johnson's rep replied within 20 minutes of getting my email.

I have checked Waltons website and see that they are now part of the BVG Group.

Here is the link with images of the Bosses.

A polite, "sad" e-mail to the Boss could really help!!

Strangely I have been wishing for a shed lately. We do have one built by my OH and a neighbour but it is full of junk. Maybe if I ask for a skip for my birthday and clear the shed out I could do what you plan to do, Hollyduff.

8 Aug, 2017


I'm with you on that one Eirys, I have done this a few times myself. Don't know if any of you remember, last year I had real problems with my landline phone and internet speed. 4 appointments were book for engineers to come and fix it and all 4 were "No Shows!" One of our customers told me to go to the MD which I did. Problem was solved quickly and we got a big credit note on our account and reduced price for 6 months. Just done the same with a company fitting a new front door as service was very poor and i was getting nowhere with their customer service and was offered £500 off price and the problems were sorted. I will always try customer service 1st but if I get nowhere then I now go to the top person.

9 Aug, 2017


Just goes to show!! :O)

10 Aug, 2017


Hi Holly glad to hear they are sorting it out. Fingers crossed it's dealt with soon.

13 Aug, 2017


Hello Everyone

I'm sorry to be so very tardy responding to your comments - I have to blame being in a new house and having a million and one things to do......

Wow Eirlys

I am mega impressed with your list of folk you managed to get responses from! Well done you.

I think I will try and write to someone in authority at Waltons because I got the replacement panels after a significant wait and guess what? They too were badly constructed with panels that have already warped!

However I have to point out again that it is definitely at the lower end of shed prices and I'm so sick of the whole thing dragging on, that I accepted a considerable refund of some of the money my husband paid for it.
Having looked at the faults again today however; I wish I had just had the whole lot picked up and returned.
Even if it isn't one of the expensive ones it still should not be constructed with very thin bits of wood that are already warped!

Still today it has been put in place and the door will be fitted tomorrow; it's had it's undercoat of colour which is going to be my blank canvas....
(Lordy I hope I don't regret going on too much to you all about how I am going to decorate it! It's actually going to be quite tame when I think about it....)

22 Aug, 2017


Hello JenLewis

Respect to you too!

I might personal message you about your strategy with the MD of the broadband provider - we've just had mega problems with 'JohnLewis' broadband (which is a total and I think underhand misnoma because it is actually facilitated by PlusNet on behalf of John Lewis) and I tried going to their 'top' man and have gotten nowhere with that...

22 Aug, 2017


Thank You Samjp - all this has definitely taken some of the shine from the whole idea but hopefully I'll perk up when I start doing the pretty bits....

When I get round to posting some photos; you will see that I went for one with the door and window on the front panel of the shed and not the usual beach hut type with the door on the end of the shed.
This might sound really silly but I thought I would feel like I have more room to work in the shed if the door was on the front as opposed to the side and yet the shed would have been the same size in reality.

22 Aug, 2017


Holly: You state that the shed is "definitely at the lower end of shed prices". That doesn't matter. If it's involved you in a lot of time-wasting and heartache it's an expensive shed! Whatever the price the shed should be well-made!

Now it's set up I hope it will give years of service and that you will furnish it as you want.

The sheds I have seen on TV set up as log cabins; pubs ; sewing rooms ; beach huts etc really look like fun.

SIL has a large office in his garden. Now he has a permanent one grandson uses it as a "Man-cave". (I hadn't heard of this.) Had my eye on the place as a future Granny Annexe!! :O(

25 Aug, 2017


Ho hum - You'd better start lobbying for plumbing and central heating now...

25 Aug, 2017


Sorry you've had all that trouble with tour shed, it certainly does spoil the initial enthusiasm you had for your decor scheme. Hope the refund was enough to take the edge off your disappointment.
I always pay for major purchases with a credit card as that gives you more guarantees than anything.
I know it's not the same but two years back I ordered a double sized wood-shed/store from Rutland County Garden Furniture & it arrived flat packed on a pallet as arranged, the 2 doors were complete.
My OH put it together easily, he said the instructions were clear & the quality of timber was good too.
It lives at the front of our property so it needs to be attractive & secure, I'm pleased to say that it looks as good today as it did when it was new.

I also had 2 log planters custom built by Country Rustics & these were also very well made at a reasonable price. It makes a change to be able to recommend companies rather than complain.

26 Aug, 2017


Green finger: So true! We should have a section where we can recommend good companies and good service.

Steragram: :O)

26 Aug, 2017

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