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Let me preface this by saying that the house is awesome. I’ve got a special ability to find things that are wrong. I’m not a big moaner but I was very aware that we had a limited time to pick up on stuff and get them fixed. Also keep in mind that this is only the stuff I’m aware of.

Here’s a list of fuckups.


Cracked mirror while installing light fitting. The electrician did this 3 times.

These flushers are meant to be tiled around neatly. The tiler didn’t get that message though and assumed there was a trim.

They cut the hole massive for these little thermostat thermometers

Tiled over the outside light hole

This wallpapering

Put the speakers in the wrong place

Wrong colour lights

Terrible plastering

This is how the home automation people treated the server racks

This is how they looked after the remote controls

They had to smash this 2m high tile off to adjust the pipework underneath. The plumber had forgot to attach the pipework to the valve, so whenever the water was turned on for this section of the house, the shower ran with no way to turn it off.


We moved in at this point. It was a few weeks before xmas. From memory, the cinema wasn’t done, the home automation wasn’t done (and the guy in charge of it quit his job just before we moved in, leaving a less experienced guy to try to pick up the pieces). I’m pretty sure we had a wooden block to hold the front gates shut because that wasn’t working yet.

Slow leaking pipe behind one of the cupboards

The surface water pump kept making an alarm sound. They had the electrician fuck with it for some reason, he raised the floats. It kept happening. The proper pump guys came out and knew what they were doing. One of the pumps was actually wired backwards so it was blowing instead of sucking. These guys are All Pump Solutions and if you have a pump in your garden I definitely recommend them, after days of the builders fucking around trying to get the electrian to fix it, they fixed it in 20 minutes.

Missing actuators on the underfloor heating meant that these two zones were always on if one of the other zones was ever on.

They fixed the gates, but they keep fucking up.

Toilet leaks

Home Automation people left the lighting node open and all their rubbish everywhere

The lighting under my sink has a 240v cable taped together feeding it.

This is what it looked like when the Home Automation People were finished

They tried to spray the fire surround to match the inner section but gave up after one spray because it looked a right mess. But left it like that anyway.

Steam room only sometimes works. This took about 6 months to fix. The temperature sensor wasn’t connected and there was some hard water thing that wasn’t connected. This only got fixed after I asked the pool people to take a look at it (the electrician was messing with it before).

The kitchen sinks weren’t draining. They came out and rodded the drains but there weren’t any blockages. A few weeks later they realised that the pipes had never actually been attached to the drain.

They were just soaking away into the dirt underneath the house.

They were lucky because they managed to find the pipe and route it to a drain – or they’d have had to dig the driveway up to fix it.

The shower valve here kept falling off. They angle grinded the tiles back, causing them to break. Their solution was to stick a bunch of silicone in the hole and call it a day.

Much later we found that they’d put all the pipework too deep in this wall and had the entire thing torn out and the pipes bought forward.

This fucking wiring. Someone thought this was okay.

The NVR in the server rack was making a lot of noise. Look at the state of this.

The stairs all started fucking up. We had a lot of shrinkage in the wood all over the house. I’m guessing this means they should have kept the wood warm and dry for a few months in the house to avoid this. We ended up getting a french polisher that fixed this all pretty good.

Water was leaking out of the wall down the living room window when we opened it. The builder had no idea what was happening. It made a big damp spot on the living room ceiling.

I did some tests and it turned out it was leaking through a grout line crack in Alex’s shower. Which shouldn’t have been possible because it was meant to have been fully tanked.

This shower had the same problem with the threaded rods being too short because the pipework was set too far back.

There’d been a terrible shitty smell in the swimming pool room. The plumber couldn’t find a problem and it was one of those situations where it didn’t stink like shit any time they came.

I found that there was an OPEN SOIL PIPE in the plant room, right behind the air handling system. This is a vent pipe so the water can flow out properly and according to the plans it should have been taken all the way up out of the roof. In the end we put an air admittance valve on it and called it a day, problem solved.

Because tiles got cracked, smashed and chipped we ended up with replacement tiles that are from a different batch, so are noticably different.

Never have white tiles

The basement also occasionally smelt like shit. I found an air admittance valve that had been cable tied open. The plumber obviously found this in his van and stuck it in without checking it. These are meant to be one way, letting fresh air in but closing and not letting air out. I didn’t trust it anymore so I replaced it with a new one.

Some of the LED strip lights kept failing in the pool room. The electrician was replacing them every month.

It turns out the plumber hadn’t fitted the overflow in the sink in there, and the drivers were underneath it.

A leak appeared in the kitchen ceiling. Builder/plumber had no idea what it was. It turned out that none of the toilets upstairs were fitted properly – we only discovered this when we got another builder to take over.

A leak in the downstairs toilet. The condensate pipe from the air conditioner wasn’t connected properly – the air con guy fixed it pretty quickly.

It turned out that when they’d drilled the pillars of the gates to put extra reinforcing plates on, they’d also drilled through all the wiring.

This is why they were so inconsistent. This was diagnosed and fully fixed once they’d got a real gate guy who knew what he was doing out to look at them.

This fucking pool tv. So the waterproof tv guys delivered the TV, started installing it, and got it in. Then they left and the home automation guy tried to install the mirror by himself.

He dropped it and it smashed everywhere, scratching the TV. So then the pool tv people are saying that the home automation people need to replace the tv – because they fucked it. The home automation people are saying nah, you should have stayed and helped.

In the end the home automation people have to pay for it on their insurance.. but they hold the TV ransom and refuse to deliver it until the builder has paid them everything they’re owed.. but they obviously have a ton of snagging left to do.

So in the end I’m like, fuck this, I’ve already paid for it and I’m the only one getting fucked, so I’m going to order a new TV and you can keep that one.

In the end they hand over the TV but refuse to install it – which is fine because the guys a bit of a cunt and we didn’t want to deal with them anymore.

And after all that the TV is a load of shit. I should have just put a sony bravia in there and only watched it at night.

When it rains there’s a drip sound behind the fireplace in the living room.

This pipe thing on top of the chimney was siliconed in and it’s failed.

The pipe coming from the extractor fan in the pool toilet is too long and ripped. Condensation is forming and leaking out into the ceiling. I ended up fixing this myself and put a hatch in the ceiling so I can keep an eye on it.

They hadn’t sealed the bottom of the gate control box properly. A slug got in and fried itself and the circuit board. I managed to fix this myself.


We’re pretty happy now. There aren’t any big unresolved issues anymore. Lockdown has been good because I’ve spent time going through smaller things and fixing them.

One of the issues for me was that the old builders/electricians/plumbers fucked things up and you have to give them a chance to make it right. But we gave them that chance and half the time they made things worse.

So what we decided to do is fuck them off as soon as possible and get it all fixed ourselves. To be fair to them – they played ball and knocked the money off to pay for that, and we’ve been really happy with the new builders.

The work the builders did themselves is pretty good.. the issues seem to have come from their ability to keep tabs on and understand what the subcontractors were doing.. and that was a big part of their job too.

Lessons learned.


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