Letter to 'make time of the essence': services

This advice applies to England. See advice for See advice for Northern Ireland, See advice for Scotland, See advice for Wales

Use this letter to give a trader a final deadline when they're taking too long to start or finish a job. You must tell them it's essential to stick to this deadline, so that you can employ another trader if you want to and claim back any money you've paid for work not done. This is called 'making time of the essence'.

Sam Hoolin

8 Park Avenue


01632 960001

Giltham Traders

24 Station Road
GT16 3LP

21 May 2024

To whom it may concern,

I am writing to you about the delay to the following work: Replacing the broken fence at the back of my house.

We made the agreement about this work on 10 September 2022. We agreed that it would be finished on 15 October 2022.

As this work has not happened, I am therefore making time of the essence in this agreement. This means that if you do not finish the work within 14 days I will treat our agreement as at an end and find another trader to finish the work.

This also means that I will claim back from you the sum of £50, which is the amount that I have paid in advance for work not done.

Yours faithfully,

Sam Hoolin

Further help

Contact the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 if you need more help - a trained adviser can give you advice over the phone. You can also use an online form.

If you’re in Northern Ireland, contact Consumerline.

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