James and Annmarie Sowray have always known there was something wrong with their house. "I just don't know what to do with it..”, Annmarie sighs.
They live in an 1860's fisherman’s cottage on the seafront in Laytown Co. Meath. Local girl Annmarie was raised only 200 metres down the road and she knows how special it is to have the sea at her front door.
From the minute they walked into their house in 2005, they loved it. Five years later with their three children older and bigger they've realised that they need a bit more space.
When Dermot walks around the house he has very outspoken views - when they show him their courtyard, he laughs "that's a very posh word for that space!" and he doesn't hold back as he sees the rest of the house, "the bedroom is very disjointed from the rest of the house and from looking at the structure - it looks and feels like a caravan!! They bought that house with their hearts and not with their heads and now they're in trouble."
With a budget of ¤60,000, Dermot's worry "is even if you took away the shoddy workmanship you'd spend the 60k, this is a really difficult one..."
When the plans are revealed Annmarie gasps "its just like a dream" but there's a catch - its 22,000 over budget. "I don't know what we are going to do, does Dermot think we have money up our shelves??"
Luckily for Dermot's clients, this year builders prices are more competitive than ever before and one such builder Peter Finn is just glad to be working, "in his football team, out of 15 fellas, there is 6 or 7 lads unemployed, so you have to be grateful that you have a bit of work".
With the budget fixed at a more manageable figure of ¤68,000 on the first day of the build, everyone seems to be happy, but there are conditions, re-using the kitchen and all the appliances for one. Three weeks in, Dermot's clients find out there is no foundations in some of their boundary walls. The answer will cost them an extra 6,000 euro! And the budget increases don't stop there - the clients seem to be adding to the extras, they now want a brand new kitchen and this time its Dermot who has to reel them back in!
Watch Dermot's struggle to match his vision with his clients on Room to Improve!
Room to Improve this Wednesday 19th May at 8.30pm on RTE1.
Michael Duffy and Sons Constructions Ltd.
Inis House, Unit 13,
Old Quarry business campus,
Peter Finn 086 276 1412
Contractors and Suppliers:
New Room and Hall
Almost White - Colourtrend
Clunch - Farrow and Ball - Mixed by Johnsons
Windbourne White - Farrow and Ball - Mixed by Johnsons
Unit 34 Cookstown Industrial Estate,
PH 01 452 5233
086 818 4327
Tiles and Paving:
612 Jordanstown Road,
Greenouge Business Park,
Tel 01 4589100
M 1 Business park,
Showrooms also in Bray, Sandyford & The Long Mile Road.
Paul Clinton, 086 8392150
AKA Kitchen Services,
KVS Business Park,
Unit A, Site 2, Kilbeggan Industrial Estate,
T 057 9333523
Plants and Trees:
T 01 8433174
Ballyogan Business Park,
T 01 2947900
Hall: Coastal Carpets, Bettystown,
New Bedroom, Wogans Interiors,