Rangers Designs & Decorations REVIEW PART 3: We Found Spiders At Home

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

In my previous post of our renovation, I tried to be fair and reviewed our contractor, Rangers Designs and Decorations.

Steve Ang Ban Li
928 Yishun Central 1 #01-133
Singapore 760928
Tel: (65) 6754 3221
H/P: (65) 9876 3221

Between these two weeks, can I say that it wasn't smooth-sailing at all? And uh, yes. I'd like to warn all my fellow readers not to engage them of their services at all now.

Chasing of payments, again.

I'm not sure if I've mentioned this before, but if I did, please bear with me as I run it through again. When we first started our renovation works, Nian and I were pleasantly surprised to find our yard windows already affixed. We thought, "Wow, this Steve is really nice. He's gotten things up and running even before we told him to!"

But our happiness was short-lived because shortly after the installation of our yard windows, Steve started calling Nian to collect the first 65% of the total payment (i.e. $12,350). You see, we had taken a renovation loan from the bank. How it works is that we would take the invoice from the contractor, submit to the bank, the bank will do the necessary procedure and then issue a cheque directly to the contractor.

The money will not go through us at all.

With that, when we submitted the invoice and everything else, it was a Thursday. The bank said that the cheque would be ready on either Monday or Tuesday because they need three working days to process, and we told Steve exactly what was told to us.

However on Friday, he told Nian that we had to pay him by hook or by crook because he had taken the initiative to start on our renovations because he knew that we wanted to move in before I deliver. When we reminded him of the bank's procedure, he told us this:


"Why not you write me a $12,000 cheque from your end, and then when the cheque from the bank comes in, (that means we would have paid him $24,700 in total when our reno is only $19,000) I'll write a cheque and refund the excess to you?"

WTF WHERE GOT PEOPLE DO BUSINESS DO LIKE THAT ONE?

When we went "O_O Are you kidding me" he actually got angry and upset that we don't trust him. -__-||

Let me quote him, "You think I'd run away with your money? Look at the car I drive. You think this is money big enough for me to run away with?"

Seriously? Would you guys do this shit if you were us? Yes, it's probably only $12K to him.

But will you give him $24,700, TWELVE THOUSAND more than what you were supposed to give, over the weekend and then wait for him to refund you the money? Come on. He can tear down the yard windows so that I can keep my excess $12K thankyouverymuch.

Before that, he actually suggested doing fund transfer / withdraw cash / cashier's order / some other lameass methods which basically just require us to give him the money because he couldn't wait until Tuesday.

It was until much discussion that lasted the entire day that he finally realized that we would not be giving him the money, that he relented and was fine that we pass him the money on Tuesday.

The next 30% was given without much drama because the cheque from the bank was already ready. But now, it comes to the last 5%, which he threw a major bitch fit to get it.

You see, we've had some problems with the overall carpentry work, as you must have read in my previous posts. Most of the carpentry work have been corrected - he got the carpenter down one day and rectified all the stiff drawers and the following problems:


When I asked him why the laminate was uneven at my living room's TV console, Steve actually snapped at me and said, "你这么厉害,你来做啦?" (Translated: If you're so good, why don't you do it yourself?)

Friends, let Auntie Jac tell you guys something I've learned. If your contractor tells you that your console / any other carpentry work is of round edge, therefore they cannot cut the laminate in a whole sheet and stick it in, they are bullshitting you. They say it that way so that they can use remaining laminates to mix and match to your carpentry work, so that wastage is minimized.

When wastage is minimized, profits are increased. Business.

I got Papa Chan over to take a look at the laminate and after checking with other contractors, it IS possible to have a full laminate over the console so that you don't see ugly laminate lines like what we have.


The arrows I've marked out are where the laminate lines could be seen. Anyway, after Steve told me to "do it myself if I'm so good", the carpenter managed to even out the laminate and it doesn't look so obvious now.

Another thing you should also take note of if you choose to engage him. I told him that his work quality is not very good, he retaliated, "Nothing is 100%. Even QC is not 100%."

When I asked him if he could give us at least 95%, he also said no. Eh btw, QC at least also 98% lor. But that's not the point. The point is, we understand that humans make mistakes. In fact, we understand that humans make A LOT of mistakes. It is not just about how perfect a piece of work a contractor gives that counts his quality, it is also about how keen he is to correct the mistake.

For now, all I see is that he's correcting it for us so that he can quickly collect our money. It's never about giving us a good service, it's never about ensuring that the work he / his sub-cons give is good. In fact, if we could "close one eye" and not pursue it, all the better.

This man has no pride in his work at all.

Okay, so the carpentry work has been said and done. He told us that we were not supposed to ask him to get his guys down repeatedly to rectify the work. Like we are supposed to mark out ALLLLLLL the defects, then they will correct it one shot.

Fine, of course! I mean, why would we wanna make them do repeated trips? Does he know that every time the carpenter comes down, we would have to make time to check their work too? He really thinks we are so free hor?

But that being said, what if after the rectification, we still find it unsatisfactory? Can't we get them down to get it done again? What if after most of the rectifications, we still find problems that we've missed out previously?

"There's no 100% one. Even QC also no 100%."

Right. Now I get it.

Yesterday, while Nian was cleaning Dylan's room, he removed one of the metal bars meant for hanging clothes.


(He removed the shorter one on the right)

When the hollow bar was detached, some baby spiders fell onto his arm. Quickly, he slapped them dead.

Then, to his horror, MORE BABY SPIDERS STARTED FALLING OUT from inside the bar!!!! Before he could think, Nian then quickly threw the bar into his pail of soap water, annihilating them before they decide to eat my Dylan up one day.

The next thing he knew, a mother of a spider climbed out from the bar.

I want to faint right now.

After clearing all the spider-clan, Nian realized that the insides of the bar were so thick with spider web, it was difficult to even manually clean them out. What we did was to leave the bar in the toilet, after attempting to clear them out with the bidet spray.

Thanks a lot, Steve.

So back to him chasing us for the remaining 5%. You see, after the carpentry work was rectified, but renovation works are not just about carpentry work right?

We barely checked the electricity circuits, whether they'd trip when we turn all the lights on at full blast. We barely made sure that all the paint is in good condition and not peeling. We haven't even done all those things and he wanted money from us already?


And he refused to move our electrical point that is right above our hob!

Ok to be fair, it's not that he didn't wanna do it. He kept discouraging us from doing it by saying that it is perfectly safe to have electrical plug above hobs and if we wanna shift it, he would replace the existing hole with a plastic cover and not a tile. Not because it's troublesome, but it "cannot be done", according to him.

He would also be giving us a chunky bigass electrical panel because "HDB only approves that kind", which is also another bullshit because HDB themselves use the slim electrical panel - how can they not approve something which they use themselves?

Finally, he gave us the number for his electrician and told us to talk to him ourselves. -___-

What kind of contractor is this Rangers Design and Decorations? If he's an ID, he sucks cuz he didn't give us any 3D drawings, which we would have gotten in a proper ID house.

If he's just a contractor, he sucks too because all he did was to sub out his work to other people to do. How can he be classified as a contractor? He doesn't even do anything!

So, he must be just a middle man. Which he sucks yet again because as a middle man, shouldn't he be the one liasing for us with regards to the painter, the electrician and the carpenter?

Ok, again, to be fair, he did do these liasing - especially for the painter. But WE liaised with the carpenter ourselves and now he wants to take our 5%, 拍拍屁股 and leave us to deal with HIS electrician? Sorry. This dude will not get our remaining money until our electrical point is shifted.

Nian told him that we will not give him the remaining money until the remaining issue is settled, but this guy, insisted us to pay him because everything in the invoice has been done and therefore time to collect money. The electrical works are not completed hello?

Even though technically everything stated in the invoice has been more or less completed, we are still requiring his services and he should have gotten it done before collecting payment right?

And you know what pisses me off the most? He actually told nian to "积一点德" cuz his wife is pregnant.

There are a lot of bad things one can say, but for a man his age, he should know where to draw the line. I mean, how much good karma can he be accumulating himself by saying things like that?

And you guys know what they say about the characters of people who spew ugly words.

Papa Chan told Nian and I before, to be ready for the renovation works because quarrels and disagreements are inevitable. He had a fair share of such renovation nightmares too, but amazingly, just as we thought we were all ready and prepared for it, we were given Steve to handle.

Good grief!

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9 comments

  1. I just had my home renovation completed last month and fully understand how you feel about it.

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    1. Oh dear. I hope everything is fine now!

      I'm keeping my fingers crossed that we won't find some devastating mistakes etc after this. >.<

      Delete
  2. Hi. I feel sorry for you. It is bad for him to say "积一点德" and co-relate to a pregnant wife. I was about to shortlist him as my reno contractor but now, even if there is a good workmanship, I will not engage such character to make my home. In the meantime, stay cheerful and congrates in getting a new family member :-)

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    1. Hello Punggolian,

      My husband was very shocked when he said that to him too. In fact, he was so shocked he didn't even know how to retaliate. -__-

      Honestly, I'm glad you're not using him anymore! Nobody should deserve such treatment from anybody. Please help me spread the word and warn people about him! :(

      Delete
    2. Hello. Actually Steve is right to say moving the electrical points cant be done the way you want. Your current socket panel Is flat because HDB embedded associated wirings while constructing the flat. No contractor can do embedding because it is against HDB law, even HDB-licensed contractors. Hence moving the points will result in exposed wirings and as a result, a thicker panel to contain the wires. Unless everything's done illegally of course. This is what my contractor told me and I have verified on HDB website too. HTH..

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    3. Ah.. I understand what you're saying. Because of the exposed wirings, I think that is why I have trunkings running around like this: http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-kBv8N3EIl7U/UBeUL_FNkzI/AAAAAAAAEEA/m25mjXYsfuk/s1600/IMG_6540.JPG when I shifted my electrical points right?

      This is an updated image of my kitchen, where I got another electrician to shift the panel away from the fire and grease. You'd notice that the panel that is used is not as thin as the one HDB uses.

      http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-MUx3st_Wfks/UBh_faOIseI/AAAAAAAAEFE/FcH8xmJtTwo/s320/singapore-electric-outlet-459x306HDB.jpg
      The HDB electrical socket panel

      http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ssj7Rk2jeGM/UBh_ezhXhsI/AAAAAAAAEE8/8v2nHdENpPw/s1600/electrical-sockets-given.jpg
      The socket panel that was used for mine

      I'll upload the one that Steve gave - it is MUCH thicker and chunkier than the existing one I have now. O_O Tried googling for an image but I think it's so old-school, Google also don't have the image already LOL.

      Funny thing was, when I asked the HDB officer (whom I got him to come down to assess my electrical point above the hob), he said that it is allowed to have the thin socket panel! -__- (I specifically asked him this cuz I didn't believe Steve telling me that it cannot be done.)

      Regardless, this electrical thingy is very tricky and I think everyone who is going through renovations should take special note in this!

      Btw, do you think could be a better suggestion for my electrical panel above my hob, other than moving the electrical point?

      Thanks!

      Delete
  3. Hello! A friend of mine is keen to engage his services but i chance upon your blog while searching for his name.

    May I know after all these years, are there any problems with the work that this contractor has done?

    Thanks!

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    1. Hi Tok,

      Wow, you will be surprised! We are only here for 2 years and quite a couple of things are giving way as we speak.

      Firstly, our TV console is tilting downwards quite drastically. This is because Steve has never bothered to check with us how big our TV is and as such, the console is unable to withstand the weight of our very ordinary 42" TV.

      The soft closing of our kitchen cabinets are now mostly spoiled. In fact, most doors with his 'complimentary soft closing' have all snapped and cannot last more than 2 years.

      His painter mixed our red paint with what others call 灰水 (cement water?) instead of using 100% paint. As such, our red walls are always showing white patches that cannot go away with cleaning.

      He may have a lot to say about us if you tell him about my entries about him. I posted my review on homereno before and he hounded my husband every day, saying that he will sue us etc until I take it down. I removed it because of his constant hounding, not because anything I say is wrong.

      Please spread the word, I don't want anyone to spend tens of thousands, only to get angry and upset over the lack of quality.

      Delete
  4. Many more thanks for post this blog i found some great information regarding interior designing. I hope it will be valuble for me in future.
    office interior renovation contractors | office renovation

    ReplyDelete

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