Written on: 27/05/2011
I had Everest Conservatories come to quote me for a conservatory. I told them i had no idea how much it costs but the internet tells me it would be between £13,000 and £22,000 and i wanted a more accurate quote. Sales person didn't know their building regs from their planning permissions. Sales person would only quote for the size conservatory they believed to be within planning regs. We wanted a quote for 37m squared within 3m from the back of the house and applicable height restrictions etc but they would only quote for 30m squared as they thought you would need planning for a larger area. I did check this after they left and it is only building regs for over 30m squared if the rest is within planning regs which is what i said. I advised them the size i wanted met all of the local planing regs and if anything would only need building regs to take a look. They quoted me for the smaller size. Anyway, their loss.
So the sales person adds it all up while i'm watching their sales DVD. What happened next is unbelievable....I was gobsmacked. Approximately £60,000 for the conservatory. I asked the sales person if they knew how much an extension costs. They provided me with a cut out from a magazine dated Feb 2011 which said i could get a two storey extension covering the same area for £20,000 less. I pointed this fact out and waited. Not much to say to that then. I then proceeded to tell the sales person when we had the survey done on the house (recently purchased it, a month ago) they quoted the cost of rebuilding the house as requested by the mortgage companies in these survey. I advised them that the quote they have just given me covers almost half the cost of rebuilding half my house to which they replied 'they are wrong.' If you say so. In that time the sales person had recalculated a new quote and...wait for it... approximately £31,000. Where did £29,000 go??? There is a catch.
The sales person presented me with a piece of paper showing me the finance deal which wasn't calculated correctly in the first instance. Finally, i could take an Everest account underwritten by Barclays. I pay a 10% deposit £1500 a month and then after 13months pay it off. After 6 months they give you 10% cash back but you would only put it back into their pocket anyway. What is the point in giving a cash back option to pay it back in. On this paperwork there was no sign of an interest rate..... I asked..... 25%. On my mortgage spreadsheet i calculated at this interest rate in 10 years i would have paid £77,000 for the conservatory, £50,000 of which is purely interest. Yeh right. The best bit is still to come. I asked the sales person if this finance price of £31,000 was only applicable if the finance was taken. Yes, otherwise it costs £60,000. You are locked in for 13 months but there are no penalties for paying it off early. Early being at least 13months into it before you can pay it off.
I do recommend them to people for quotations ONLY because you really have to hear and see it to believe it. Needless to say we have had three other companies come and quote around £18,000 - £21,000 for the 30m squared conservatory.
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