27 January 2010

Stalled... The Frustration Continues

Still no roof. The house looks exactly the same as when we last saw it in November. It's as though construction stopped...

Actually, it did stop. According to the site engineer, they had problems with the contractor assigned to our house. This meant only one thing - another phone call to the head office.

This time, we spoke with Ellen and here's the gist of our email and phone conversations:

- Jan 12

Nicole: Can we please get an update on the new turn over date, get a copy of the house plans and have the Ayala e-gift certificates (EGCs) extended since the house is late? We wanted to use them for the house.

Ellen: We have duly noted your concerns and we'll get back to you tomorrow for an update.

- Jan 14

Nicole: Any update please? You mentioned over the phone the other day that you would give us feedback on Wednesday (yesterday).

Ellen: I apologize for not reverting to you yesterday since we are still waiting for the confirmation on the turnover timeline of your unit.

With regard to your EGC, we're sorry but we can no longer extend the validity of the certificates. Although, we've issued an advice yesterday to the Construction team to include your unit in the priority list so will be able to do the turnover at the soonest possible time.

I've discussed with Ms. Cathy pertaining to your SLO and she confirmed to have forwarded your agreement to the Construction team for application.

I will meet up with the CMD team tomorrow and will firm up with them your timeline.

Btw, per checking, your account has not been loan released yet. We've also followed up status with our Bankfin group on the cause of the delay.

We'll keep you posted.

At this point, I decided to call her. This then resulted in a rather heated conversation with Ellen talking to me as though I were a two year old she was trying to be patient with (but not succeeding).

- Jan 15

Nicole: You know what Ellen? This entire process has been nothing but frustrating and disappointing. And when you have supposed "customer care" agents who talk to you with an irritated and exasperated tone (as though you owe them a favor), it makes matters worse. Let's review again - whose house is late and whose GCs can't be extended? A simple matter really considering that the the company building the house also owns the company issuing the GCs.

When we started talking to the sales agent in January 2009, he said that we should get the house by August 2009. That timeline made sense. The GC expiry date will be in March so there's enough time to do what we want to do.
When the contract arrived, it stated that the turnover was for the fourth quarter of 2009 (last year). Okay, a little delay shouldn't be a problem.

But no one even bothered to tell us either via phone or email that the house will be late. It was the bank who gave us an update last November. You call that customer service?
Also, what is the use of drawing up a contract if Avida does not follow the terms they themselves set? I guess that also means that we don't have to follow any of the rules stated on the said contract. If Avida didn't follow it, why should we?

As to the loan, according to the bank, it will not be released until the house is finished - shouldn't Avida know this by now? At the moment, the house does not even have a roof.

You mentioned over the phone that you will try to get the house done by March. Avida can't even get simple GCs extended - what more for the actual completion of the house? And you told me that the it will still be made with quality work? The floor of the first Patrice model unit was uneven - it was clearly slanting which my father saw right away. The explanation of your sales agent was that the unit was "rushed".

Isn't the model unit supposed to be the best example of what the house will look like as that's what you use to help people decide on whether to buy?

We are okay with the house being late provided that the GCs can be extended. But since this apparently cannot be done, my question is, what is Avida going to do to make up for all the inconvenience?

Ruth (Ellen's boss): Good morning, Ms. Denoga!

Thank you for bringing the matter to my end. Please accept our sincerest apologies for all the inconvenience the matter had caused you.

Moving positively forward, allow me please to provide latest details herein below:

Unit Completion
We are directly coordinating with the construction team on-site and had requested for the most feasible timeline we can (re)commit to your good end.

EGC Extension
Yours truly had directly asked from the higher management for the extension approval. Justification was made and personally endorsed the request.

For more concrete details/resolution, rest assured, yours truly will update you again on or before Tuesday, January 19.

The conclusion? A quality checked house (as per Avida) will be turned-over on 31 March 2010 and the Ayala EGCs have been extended until June.

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