A couple described the moment human waste exploded in their roof after they claimed a builder’s botch job on their bathroom turned their house into a stinking disaster zone.
Clare and Paul Rossi paid £13,500 to have their bathroom done up, but after the sewage started leaking into the attic space, they’ve been forced to fork out a further £6,000 to repair the damage.
To deal with the problem, Paul had to cut a hole in his bedroom wall in order to clamber through and attempt to stop the leak.
And the couple have now discovered that most of their roof will now also need to be repaired.
The couple had hired the Hull builder to help them complete a dorma extension, including a bathroom, at their house in Wawn, East Riding of Yorkshire.
After initially meeting with the builder, they described him as being “a really lovely, great guy who had real charisma.”
But the job, which was supposed to take just 10 days, ended up dragging on for a full month, due to a series of problems.
Clare, 46, said it was “one thing after another” beginning with one of the builder’s tradesmen falling through the hallway ceiling, soon followed by water “gushing” through the living room roof.
The substance abuse nurse said: “We got some builders round for quotes – we didn’t go for the cheapest quote or anything like that – he was efficient in coming round and so we thought it was brilliant.
“He seemed nice and he told us he was ex-forces. My husband is ex-forces so we thought he was a really great guy and he was absolutely lovely – we fell for him. He was so nice.
“He started to do the work on the house and a number of things started to happen. One of the builders working for him fell through the ceiling into the hallway, he really hurt himself.
“His language was absolutely atrocious but we were in too far by this stage.
“Then he brought in one of his friends who was a plumber and they didn’t tighten the connections properly so I was sat there and water started gushing through my living room ceiling.
“It was one thing after another. He then installed the waste pipe too high, left us with live wires in a wet room and connected the water system to the central heating system so every time we turned the taps on the boiler went off.”
Because much of the builder’s work was hidden behind walls, the couple couldn’t see exactly what he was doing and continued to pay him, despite “what was supposed to be a 10 day job leading into a month because of his errors.”
But it was only when the couple started to notice the awful smell that they discovered the true extent of the botched job.
Clare, who suffers from osteoarthritis and ME, said: “The whole sewage pipe collapsed and it all went into the roof. It was disgusting.
“When it was checked a normal bolt had been used and clips hadn’t been secured – it was just the worst job you have ever seen.”
She added: “My husband had to cut a hole in the bedroom wall and crawl through into the roof to actually put all of this right and clean up all the sewage. It was everywhere.”
“We tried to get hold of him but couldn’t. He wasn’t responding to our texts or messages.
“I was sat there crying, it’s really caused me a flare up of my condition and has made me quite poorly. My whole home has been in uproar since February.
“Now to hear that the whole roof has to come off because it is not fit for purpose – I just ask myself when is this going to stop. I just want my home back.
“There is no way it is acceptable, it is absolutely shocking. It’s been a nightmare and my poor husband didn’t want this at 66.
“Because of his errors, it is eating out of the rest of my money and the other things we wanted to do to the house.
“He has left us in an absolute state and I’ve got numerous tradesmen coming out to fix it.”
Clare said the builder had a series of 10 out 10 stars on a well known web review site but admits the couple were naive in putting their full trust in him.
She said: “We gave him his last payment because we got his sob story of ‘I can’t pay my builders’ and they were really nice guys and we fell for that.
“We were naive as we hadn’t used builders before – we have always done our own thing so we didn’t actually know the ins and outs of hiring a builder.
“Since then I have learned that they should have company accounts and never to pay them personally.”
Clare isn’t hopeful for a satisfactory resolution and says she knows she will “probably walk away with nothing” but doesn’t want other customers to fall for charisma over proof of previous good work.
Since going online to speak about their ordeal, Clare said others have come forward, sharing similar stories.
She said one family were offered just £10 per month by the builders as a way of repaying them for their errors.
Amazingly, tradesmen in the community have rallied around the couple to help them rectify the issues.
Clare said professionals have deemed the damage as “the worst they have ever seen”.
“The whole roof has to come off and be redone. James Cooper of Pride Property Maintenance and J O, Neil LTD have actually offered to do it for free which is amazing.
“We offered to pay but they said they are a big company and that they would put us right.
“Spicers Plaster Ltd are also currently repairing all ceilings and walls at a reduced rate which is really good of them. Definitely restores your faith.”
The builder in question declined to comment when contacted by Hull Love, but did dispute the claims made by the Rossis and claimed to have contacted a solicitor for legal advice.