Duped by relatives? You be the judge.
If you've read through this blog, then you know how important it was for us to avoid having furniture made with medium-density fibreboard (MDF) as it's prone to mold and very flimsy. So in 2011, when we had our cabinets done by Cusm Furniture Shop, we specified that solid wood or plyboard was to be used for our cabinets. This was also reflected in the contracts we signed with them which you can view in the following links:
Laundry and pantry cabinets
Bedroom cabinets, linen closet, and bookshelves
Now that we've finally moved in, we've discovered, most of the cabinets are made of MDF. I confronted the owners, and below is what they had to say about the situation.
Nicole: Hi Uncle Mel and Tita Cindy, just wondering pls what material is in the attached picture. Is it MDF? It's not plyboard or solid wood.
Cusm: Hi Nicole, MDF.
Nicole: Thanks! That picture was from one of the kitchen cabinet doors you installed.
The thing is, I specifically said no MDF. Also, no where in the papers signed and specifications agreed upon in writing stated that MDF was the material to be used.
What we paid for is supposed to be 18mm thick solid mahogany in duco painted finish.
So now I'm wondering if all the supposedly solid mahogany doors are actually MDF.
Now I'm wondering if everything is made of MDF.
A few years ago, two or three of the doors were replaced because I found out they were made of MDF (the laminate chipped). I thought at the time that maybe it was just a mistake with a few doors. It's now looking like they're all MDF.
Cusm: We only use MDF for your kitchen doors only. Sorry for the late reply.
Nicole: But I didn't pay for MDF. The contract does not state MDF - it's supposed to be solid mahogany doors.
The first thing I said to Uncle Mel was no MDF. The contract and what we paid was for solid mahogany doors.
Why did you make it MDF? I've been feeling really bad and depressed about this. All along I believed we had solid wood doors. Honestly, I feel cheated.
Cusm: We are sorry if you feel bad and depressed. And we didn't cheat you, I don't know what happened that they used MDF on doors. We will refund half of the total cost of your kitchen cabinet.
Nicole: I take it the kitchen, pantry, and laundry cabinets all have MDF doors? Actually, would it be possible to get replacement doors instead please? Meaning, the doors to be changed to what was actually stated on the conforme?
Though, if you're too busy, then we'll go with the refund.
My old contractor just passed by the house and told me even the carcass is made of MDF (not just the doors).
We recently had a case of termites that ate part of the pantry cabinets. They took a look at the hole and said everything is made of MDF.
Cusm: I will asked Mel. Will email you again.
- Five days later -
Cusm: Can I get your account number? Will deposit your November 2010 downpayment P48,320.
Nicole: Timberpro is currently here at the house. He said the following have MDF:
- Kitchen cabinets - doors, some of the shelves
- Pantry & laundry cabinets - carcass, doors and shelves (in other words, EVERYTHING)
- Linen closet - carcass, doors and shelves (in other words, EVERYTHING)
- Bedroom closet - drawers and shelves
That's almost everything. Considering that no where in the contract is MDF listed as an approved, agreed, and paid for material, how did it get there? There's too much of it to be "mistake."
I initially asked for all to be ducco finish, it was Uncle Mel who suggested everything be covered in laminate. Remember, you even got mad at me because you said you've spent so much on laminates already. Take note it wasn't even my idea. Now I'm wondering if the laminate served another purpose.
How would you feel if you were in our shoes?
15 October 2017
05 October 2017
25 September 2017
Though it's a work in progress as we're currently sorting through boxes and organizing everything. We also still have to hunt for furniture (e.g. coffee table) and other things. In the meantime, here's a sneak peak of what the house looks like so far.