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Could I get my deposit back from a poor developer?

Discussion in 'Website Design Forum:' started by davver79, Aug 21, 2011.

  1. davver79

    davver79 New Member


    I'm looking for some advice. I recently hired a developer to build our new company ecommerce website, from photoshop files supplied by ourselves. I now have some big concerns about the quality of their work. The thing is I have already paid them a deposit of 30% upfront for their work (£300).

    - I'm having to guide them as to the best wordpress plugin solutions
    - They did not deliver the first draft on time as they promised
    - The first draft only consisted of the homepage, with no commerce programming done at all, which is the main bulk of the site. No other pages were done.
    - The homepage build was poor and the styling does not match the photoshop files supplied
    - The site will not be complete within the timescale they promised
    - And this is the big one... after I gave them access to my hosting, they've dug out an old version of my site I did years ago, taken the code and changed bits of it so it looks like the new design. There's even some styling in there thats the same as the old site from years ago. I'm not a developer, I'm a designer, and they've just taken my badly written code and tweaked it.

    I've hired this company to build me a brand new, well coded site from scratch, and they're no where near that.

    It's quite obvious to me now that they're not up to the job, so I would like to ditch them and claim some, if not all of my deposit back. Does anyone know if I stand any chance of getting this deposit back?

    Any advice greatly appreciated...

    Thank you.
  2. Tony Hardy

    Tony Hardy Well-Known Member

    Just had a tiny look over, will reply a bit later, but, do you have any sort of contract? Verbal/written/emails?
  3. davver79

    davver79 New Member

    Hi Tony,

    Thanks for the reply, no verbal or written contract, just an invoice for the 30%.

  4. squeezee

    squeezee Member

    Sounds like you have a problem, are they a UK based company, a foreign company or just a geek with a website?
  5. davver79

    davver79 New Member

    Hi Squeezee,

    They are a UK based design and web development company, but as far as I can tell it is just one person.
    They look professional and they're website says they can do everything I needed.

  6. djb

    djb Member

    From a personal perspective, I’d be gutted if a client wasn’t happy and would probably enlist help to meet their expectations - even if it meant I made nothing from the job. So give the developer a chance to make things right. Explain exactly what you want, when you want it and get it all in writing before you part with any more cash.

    Who knows, maybe they’re having a difficult time for whatever reasons and haven’t been able to give your project the full attention it needs? Alternatively they could just be shit but either way, you need to talk about it with them first and I’m sure all will become clear.
  7. davver79

    davver79 New Member

    Thanks djb. I have emailed them tonight and calmly made my concerns clear, so hopefully they'll reply with a solution. If not, I need a backup plan! Thanks for taking the time to reply.
  8. chris_17

    chris_17 Member

    Did they send you some terms and conditions? If so, post them on here and we can have a look :icon_smile:

    In my terms, I have something that basically says if the relationship isn't working then the client will be charged for the work up till that point. Don't know if there's anything like that in there?

    Just threaten them with small claims court proceeding and they'll quickly give you some money back! :icon_wink:
  9. davver79

    davver79 New Member

    There were no terms & conditions unfortunately. Things seems to be progressing a bit better now, but I may need somebody to give me a critique on their work, from a developers point of view before I pay them!

  10. Ian Bonner

    Ian Bonner Member

    Once bitten. Thats why T&C's are vitally important to both parties. They serve a purpose and just as we wouldn't do a job without a contract or conditions neither should the client accept one.
  11. squeezee

    squeezee Member

    Their website forms part of the contract, what was their brief? Did you make it clear what you wanted?
  12. Alex

    Alex Member

    Do they have any websites in their portfolio? From what you've said they sound like con artists to me because no professional web designer should have problems with the basic things you've described. If you PM me their website I'll take a look to see if their portfolio looks legitimate (it's amazing how many companies have fake portfolios). If they're falsely advertising then you may have a stick to beat them with.
  13. byronc

    byronc Member

    you have to assess whether its worth continuing with them.

    it might be cheaper to cut off from them now and move on to someone else. This about whether its going to eb slow and tortuous for ever?

    I would be interested in what they/he/she are doing too - could you pm me your link please?
  14. True Graphics

    True Graphics New Member

    website cms

    some designers are not great, but you could use a cms and amend the website yourself which would be easier and cheaper for you

    True Graphics

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