Alarm raised over patio and shed business failing to complete work (Factory Direct Group / Profounder Factory Direct / Factory Direct WA)
- Factory Direct WA customers paid $342,264 but most received nothing
- Contracts entered into go as far back as October 2021 with no work completed
- 60 complaints from WA consumers so far
Consumer Protection has raised the alarm over a business that supplies and builds patios, carports, garages and sheds, after 60 WA consumers lodged complaints claiming goods and services were not supplied, or the work not carried out in a reasonable time.
A warning has been issued against Profounder Factory Direct Pty Ltd formerly trading as Factory Direct WA (cancelled October 2022) and Factory Direct Group Pty Ltd with deposits totalling $342,264 being paid by consumers without delivering the works. Individual deposits range from $448 to $6617.
The complaints received between 22 March 2022 and 29 June 2023 mostly relate to shed and patio installations, with some carports and garages identified. Affected customers are from the Perth metropolitan area predominantly, with four from regional areas.
Contracts entered into go as far back as October 2021 where works have not been completed and full or part payments have been accepted. On occasion, consumers were given delivery dates for works to be completed, however, most dates were not adhered to by the business, with little to no communication provided to inform consumers why there were delays.
Orders could be made via the website www.factorydirectwa.com.au which has since been taken down, or quotes were requested by contacting their former Wangara office. Deposits were then paid upon agreeing to a contract quote after receiving an invoice from the business and payment methods ranged from credit card to bank transfer payments.
It is an offence under the Australian Consumer Law for traders to accept payment for goods or services and then fail to supply them either within the agreed timeframe or, if not specified, within a reasonable time.
Commissioner for Consumer Protection Trish Blake urges consumers to avoid making further progress payments to this business until materials have been purchased and the work is progressed.
“Our recommendation is to pay a small deposit upfront and only pay the balance when the work is complete. For bigger jobs, payments can be made at various stages when certain work is completed or when materials are supplied,” Ms Blake said.
“It is alarming that this business has taken deposits from numerous consumers but have failed to supply the goods and services in a reasonable timeframe and have not been transparent in communicating delays.
“Our investigation into this trader continues and, if breaches of the Australian Consumer Law are identified, further action may be taken.”
Further complaints against Factory Direct Group, Profounder Factory Direct or Factory Direct WA can be lodged on the Consumer Protection website. Enquiries can be made by calling 1300 30 40 54 or by email email@example.com.
Complaints can also be lodged with Building and Energy in relation to workmanship or home building work contract issues. Consumers are reminded that:
- Home building work contracts valued between $7,500 and $500,000 must comply with the provisions of the Home Building Contracts Act 1991; in particular that a building service provider can only demand a 6.5 per cent deposit and that any progress payments must be genuine. (This applies whether or not the provider is a registered building service provider).
- Home building work valued over $20,000 that requires a building permit must be carried out by a registered building service provider. Consumers are advised to check the Register on the Building and Energy website to ensure their builder is appropriately registered.
- A registered builder must obtain a certificate of home indemnity insurance for home building work valued over $20,000 requiring a building permit.
Media Contact: Jasmine Sidhu, (08) 6552 9248 / 0429 078 791 / firstname.lastname@example.org