Happy Christmas Homebase!

Happy Christmas Homebase!

Anyone who knows me, or follows me on Twitter will know I am not best pleased with Homebase.  The kitchen they installed was an unmitigated disaster, and there were even more problems with it than the ones I’ve listed on here!  I reckoned if I went on too much you’d all drift off into to a kitchen haunted coma. Anyway!  Last week they sent us a hand written Christmas card wishing us a ‘Happy Christmas!’ in our new kitchen – which I’m afraid, pushed me over the edge.  Horace has asked me to write a letter of complaint and thinks I have spent the last hour writing a heartfelt plea for compensation – instead I wrote this.  Do you dare me to send it?

Thanks very much for the Christmas card, it was very sweet of you to think of us.

We certainly do intend to have a lovely Christmas in our new kitchen.  Personally I think that it’s great that we have a spare hob in a box by the front door, that way if the current problems get any worse on the big day we can simply call out one of your friendly gas engineers who will be happy to swap it over in the midst of the festive period.  In the mean time I shall simply carry on as I have been doing for the last couple of months – ie. turning the knob, waiting for it to click and light, letting go and swearing when it goes out.  I love a bit of tension in the kitchen. The mismatched knob for the hob that you sent us adds a bit of variation to an otherwise boring looking cooker too.  Thanks for that.  You did promise to send us the matching knob, but I’m presuming that’s due to arrive on Christmas day as an extra lovely surprise from yourselves.

I almost miss the grill pan shorting the electrics in the entire house too, it was kind of fun resetting all the digital clocks in the house and switching the computers back on every time I cooked sausages – but instead I can always keep myself busy boiling the kettle to pour into the dishwasher to stop it beeping hysterically and refusing to wash dishes.  I’ve been told I have to do this because the water that flows into the dishwasher is too cold and affects the sensors – in reality, I reckon the misbehaving cooker has been a bad influence.  I have tried to talk to the dishwasher and explain how important it is that it washes our stuff first time round, but it just beeps at me – I’m presuming it is censoring its foul language which is something to be thankful for at least. (In its defence, it does usually grudgingly give up and wash our dishes eventually).  The plastic slidey tablet bit pinged off too, but the cooker engineer, who is obviously friendly with dishwashers too, has fixed that for the moment.  Fingers crossed, Christmas dinner washing up should be taken care of – as long as the dishwasher doesn’t have another hissy fit.

At least I’ve done all my Christmas shopping!  I’ve stuffed all the tins and packets into the cupboards you installed and everything is ok so far.  I must admit I haven’t weighed all the items so I’m just hoping I haven’t gone over the recommended unknown weight limit for your shelves which was the problem with the first cupboard – which incidentally were the ones we chose.  We now have cupboards we didn’t actually choose in the first place at all, but hey, I like having cupboards put in, taken out and replaced again.  It’s fun empting and filling and emptying and filling and emptying and filling cupboards over and over again.  It helped me do a bit of exercise which will be handy when it comes to fitting into my Xmas Little Black Dress at least.

The taps work perfectly….now too.  One of the handles was wobbly and needed replacing.  I think it was kitchen appliance peer pressure to be honest.  Everything else seemed to need replacing or gluing and the poor taps felt left out.  After all, the spice drawer was broken initially and a spare one had to be ordered, and I lost count of how many other bits of kitchen had to be re-ordered.  Mind you, it gave your delivery drivers something to do!  And in the current financial climate I think it’s admirable that you’re keeping people busy and in work.  They’d do very well as Santa’s little helpers as they seem to work all the hours of the day – the last delivery driver rang me the night before and said the only time he could drop off he aforementioned hob was between 6.30 am and 7.45am in the morning.   Very convenient and good practise for Christmas morning, so thanks for the rehearsal early morning start.

We have decided we actually like the badly applied tiles, it adds a sort of quirkiness to an otherwise straightforward, square tiled wall and your staff have spent so much time here already, we think it’s only fair that they spend time with their own families too at this important time of year.

The icing on the Christmas cake was the light on the overhead extractor fan, which blew a fuse twice – for reasons only known to itself.  Once again, I suspect hanging about with a kitchen as badly behaved as ours rubbed off on it.

All the cupboard doors now close properly too, after being messed about with on countless ocassions – which is nice.

And if you were wondering, everything seems ok with the new worktops so far.  The sprouts will not be rolling slowly towards the wall at the back because of the sloping angle it was originally installed at…..oh wait….that wasn’t the first time was it?  The first time you installed a worktop that ‘blew’ (a very technical term for a very odd bubbling wood, raised surface kind of effect) which made for an interesting and unusual textured surface.  All in all, the worktop was put on a grand total of three times – a brilliant illustration of the saying ‘Try, Try and Try again.’  Homebase is obviously dedicated to persistance, or should that be ‘Taking the P*ssedness’.  Well, I suppose it is the season of goodwill and presumably good humour so I can only presume you were playing a pre-Christmas prank.

Now seriously.  In your defence you have dealt with our ASBO kitchen, but not as swiftly as we would have liked and at our inconvenience.  I don’t think anything in our kitchen has behaved quite as it was meant to, we are more than disappointed and are seeking compensation.

I sincerely hope we do have a happy christmas in our new kitchen, although I’m not holding my breath.  For one thing, I’m sure that spare hob-in-a-box that was delivered last week is trying to trip me up every time I walk in the door.  Honestly, it’s felt like the whole kitchen has been out to get us.

Happy Christmas Homebase!  Looking forward to hearing from you,

Seasons greetings!

32 responses to “Happy Christmas Homebase!

  1. sheila160852@live.co.uk

    I enjoyed reading your blog about your kitchen, but I am sorry to hear how badly it has been fitted. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas for all that. I also hope that you do sue for compen as it is ridiculous for a company to go on like that . Good Luck

  2. Thank you Sheila. I think I’m going to send it tomorrow morning and I’ll blog the response too. I suppose they can only say no, so what’s the harm in trying!

  3. Send it and if you don’t get a response within a week, then contact them again and ask for it to be escalated – they must have a SLA for dealing with complaints and it would be fun to see how they react on the run.

  4. Brilliant 🙂

  5. My computer tells me this web site is suspicious! Maybe Homebase doesn’t want people reading it, do you think? I hope you get the kitchen sorted and some decent compensation.

  6. That is a brilliant letter – seriously I need you to write mine to my bank!!

    What a nightmare, it’s certainly put me off ordering a new kitchen from Homebase. My parent’s are having an extension built, and actually quite like the look of one of their range – I’m showing this to my mum!!

    My current kitchen is from homebase, and whilst I didn’t get it fitted by their staff and I have had nowhere near as many problems as you, the quality is pretty shoddy. We’ve had broken hinges, a dishwasher that also throws hissy fits (is yours a Candy?) and the pelmet thingie has always looked crap because there was physically no way of cutting it to length without the lamiate gloss finish chipping off at the corners.

    Good luck with it, can’t wait to hear their response. x

  7. Funnily enough Liz, our dishwasher is a Candy….

  8. I can’t believe what you have been through! By anyone’s standards, this is deplorable service – and since when has it been ok to deliver at 6.30am??? I hope they take this really seriously and you get AT LEAST a grovelling apology and compensation. I’ll be following this blog and also directing people to it if they say they’re considering a kitchen from Homebase!

  9. This is appalling, their product quality is atrocious, the customer service is terrible. Ican’t believe that a company as large as Homebase have behaved as badly as your kitchen, Kay.
    Come on Homebase, do the decent thing, it’s about time this kitchen was sorted out.

  10. I can’t believe how bad this kitchen is. I would have expected more from Homebase. They should be ashamed of themselves. We all dream of a new kitchen but your dream has certainly turned into a nightmare. Then to send you a Christmas card just adds salt into the wound. I think you deserve so much more from them, and if they wish to redeem themselves they need to do something very special for you and your family.

  11. Great letter Kay. Just the sort of honest review that we consumers need to read before we go spending our hard earned cash.
    I sincerely hope that Homebase actually do something positive and sort your kitchen out, and offer you some compensation. It’s been going on far too long.
    I too will be pointing this blog post out to anyone thinking of using Homebase in the future.

  12. @prawny2004

    Brilliant letter, id send a copy to watchdog also.

    I will send the blog link to any of my customers who may be thinking of going to Homebase.

    I hope you get compensation and most of all a functional kitchen which is what you paid for.

  13. Jodie, thank you for commenting. Depending on the results of today’s email, I may just do that. :O)

  14. As if a shite kitchen isnt bad enough. Taking this long to fix it is an absolute joke.

  15. What a complete shambles, love your response to them, would suggest adding a time frame as to when you expect a response and once that has passed would then take it to the next level
    Really puts you off HOMEBASE doesn’t it.
    You know what they say. One person has a bad experience they tell two, the two tell four and so on and so on, so maybe Homebase should take note and sort this mess out!!

  16. How awful! I will not be using there services if this is the way they treat their customers – let’s hope your have a happy resolution Amanda

  17. That is despicable!!!! Poor you Kay!! How are you still sane???

    I will certainly be forwarding this on to my friends to read!!!

    Sort it out Homebase!!

  18. Brilliant blog Kay – what a crock of shite homebase are!! your writing is superb and you should def send the letter, have you been to watchdog about them too?

    Hope you have a brilliant crimbo xxxxx

  19. sounds like you have had a v v v poo time with it all. I hope homebase get themselves sorted, I certenly wont be shopping there in the futcher.

  20. I wouldn’t have ever trusted Homebase to fit me a lightbulb let alone a kitchen and this is just another sorry tale as to why. Should I hear of anyone thinking of parting with their hard earned cash and allowing Homebase to fit their new dream kitchen, I’ll be sending them these details so God forbid, they don’t make the same mistake. Shoddy kitchen, shoddy fitting, shoddy service, shoddy choice.

  21. Absolutely shocking. I’ve never had any reason to doubt homebase previously (as clearly you didn’t!) but this post clarifies to me that I shouldn’t trust them with supplying me with a decent picture hook, nevermind fitting a whole kitchen!

    You’ve clearly received some absolutely appalling customer service and obviously not even the slightest attempt at an apology in between these numerous re-fittings and redeliverys.

    Should any of my friends even mention Homebase, I shall flag this post up to them as why they do not deserve the custom. I hope you receive a full and sincere apology and reasonable compensation, although to me it would seem that at the very least a substantial amount of cash is due. I don’t know how they make up for all of your wasted time and worry though.

    I’m sincerely sorry that you’ve had to go through this awful experience. What a shocker. Hope you and your family have the most wonderful Christmas and a problem free 2011. xx

  22. Brilliant letter – I was due to buy a new kitchen from them but this has really put me off – no wonder they want all the money up front as no-one would pay them at the end!!

  23. Truly Awful! I am amazed such workmanship and behaviour is allowed! Hope you get this sorted guys.

  24. Wow, sounds awful, hope they get it sorted to a standard that you are happy with 😦

    We’re in the market for a new kitchen next year, and your story fills me with dread!

  25. Maureen Williams

    Now,I like this,and yes,I think you should send it,the people reading it clearly have sense of,warped humour,which explains your wonderful,first time perfect cooking area,so with this in mind,it they read it in a reasonable time span (whilst munching easter eggs,presumably) they will be chuckling until turkey time,2012!

  26. Pingback: Happy Christmas Homebase – Part Deux! « brinkofbedlam

  27. This is appalling! It’s good to hear that they went some way to try to fix some things but clearly someone should have realised that your overall experience was not acceptable and sorted it out. I’m in need of a kitchen refit and was hoping to go high street, like to Homebase, for it, but this sort of thing puts me right off. It’s like it’s all been subcontracted to lots of different places with no single point of contact. Wait, maybe the door-hob is actually the project manager? We’ll get you out, just wait!!!

  28. Pingback: 2010 Blog Stats in review! (tecchie stuff you may or may not be interested in) « brinkofbedlam

  29. Sorry to hear about your problems. I have just installed a Homebase kitchen and its been one of the biggest mistakes of my life! My kitchen has had about as many faults as yours so I do not think you were just an unlucky customer, I think its their standard levels of customer service! If you can call it that! Won’t touch them with a barepole now!

    • So I’m not on my own Ben! You know what, they didn’t even offer me any compensation at all, not even a £1 Homebase voucher to buy out of date Xmas decs. How unbelievable is that. They really don’t care at all do they. Sorry you’ve had problems too. Hope you sort out the problems you’ve had with your kitchen and thanks for commenting.

  30. appalling service and you deserve compensation 100%. homebase started our kitchen 1/11/10 and up until today 24/2/11 it is still not sorted. currently we are staying at a hotel as our ceiling in the kitchen is being plastered for the SECOND time as they have had to cut holes in the ceiling to sort the extractor ducting out. the first time they had to cut holes in the newly plastered ceiling was because the electrician who fitted the spot lights forgot to test them before everything was sealed up. never mind cowboys but monkeys are used as homebase contractors. luckily we have paul who has been appointed the trouble-shooter. he is not a monkey but seems a good technician who gets to the bottom of things swiftly.
    issues so far.
    1. spotlights not working
    2. not enough downlights fitted
    3. ugly cut in pelmet
    3. granite dropped on new porcelain tiles and cracked 3 of them and chipped skirting board
    4. extractor fan chimney butchered
    5. damaged hob
    6. pelmet not fitted correctly
    7. screws sticking out
    8. screw caps not fitted
    9. wrong splashback fitted/ordered – twice
    10. plinth heater thermostat not fitted
    11. electrician walking through house helping himself to tea without permission
    12. promise of a “team” of fitters. dave was our “team”… he was almost good but let himself down by getting angry with the extractor hood
    13. hector – he was our salesman. a very good salesman as we only wanted taps when we initially walked into homebase, stanway in october 2010. he promised all would be finished by johns professional team by the 26/11 latest. nothing was a problem and everything was achievable according to hector. hes a liar but a good liar.
    14. extractor fan bodged a few times.
    15. probably many other things i have missed out.

    to be fair danny the person responsible to see the work remedied has been very good but even so i could never recommend using homebase, you might as well go to disney and speak to mickey and minnie…

    • I’m so sorry to hear you’ve also had problems. We did eventually get £250 vouchers after I harassed them enough, but since then our child safe lock on one of the kitchen cupboards has stopped working. They just seem to put in really apalling quality stuff and their workmen just seem to be uniformly shoddy. I actually had to stand over one of them while they did the plastic sealant at the back of the units and point out the bits where there were huge gaps. I really hope you get some recompense, and feel free to use this blog as ammunition if you need to. You’re not on your own, and don’t let them tell you otherwise! xxxxxx

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