Families out of pocket as doors close on shed company
A BUNDAMBA couple has been left $1400 out of pocket after the company they paid to supply two roller garage doors vanished with barely a trace.
John and Val Vogel were devastated to find the premises of Patios and Sheds Ipswich locked and deserted, after the company failed to deliver and install a roller-door kit they'd paid a deposit for before Christmas.
Mr Vogel, who is terminally ill, and Mrs Vogel, said they didn't even have a way of contacting the company, with phone numbers not working and the company's website now shut down.
The Vogels are not the only people who have been left out of pocket, with the QT being told that Patios and Sheds Ipswich had been locked out of its Warwick Rd premises due to the non-payment of rent.
Mrs Vogel said she and her husband had taken the matter up with the Queensland Building and Construction Commission, which was now investigating Patios and Sheds Ipswich.
"We went out there just before Christmas," Mrs Vogel said.
"They told us that if we paid them the deposit straight away, we would have our doors just after Christmas.
"After a few weeks of waiting we decided to go around there to see them.
"When we arrived, nearly everything was gone.
"There was a phone number on the fence for the person who owns the property."
Patios and Sheds Ipswich, positioned opposite the Ipswich Showgrounds on Warwick Rd, was a Shed Company franchisee for a short time last year.
The QT has been told that the franchise agreement between the two parties was terminated by the parent company after only eight weeks, due to poor performance and negative customer feedback.
A representative from The Shed Company said efforts were being made to assist 11 Ipswich customers who had made complaints from around the time that the franchise agreement was in place, but that this did not include the Vogels, who enlisted the Ipswich business after the termination.
Another former customer of the Ipswich business, who asked not to be named, said he went to the company for a pergola because they were thousands of dollars cheaper than the competition, but that there were some delays in the supply and construction.
"Their communication was good up until the point where we paid our deposit," he said.
"I didn't mind the delays, but it was the fact that their communication with us was poor.
"The end result was actually very good and worth the effort."
Not all former customers were as forgiving.
One unhappy customer took to an online forum to complain about delays in the supply and construction of a shed.
"Do not use this company," their post read.
"I purchased a shed with The Shed Company aka Patios and Sheds Ipswich; paid the full amount of $10041.65 in November 2014 and have yet to see my shed built.
"Now the company is nowhere to be seen. Their phones have been disconnected and their emails are bouncing back. I am now in the process of lodging a claim with QBCC."
A spokesman from the QBCC confirmed that a complaint had been received from Mr and Mrs Vogel, and investigations were under way.
The QT was unable to contact Patios and Sheds Ipswich.