The Acting Director of Consumer Affairs Victoria, David Joyner, has issued a public warning notice to consumers regarding the alleged conduct of unregistered builder Michael Johnson.
Mr Johnson, 54, of Aspendale Gardens, advertises cheap building services under his own name, and trading names Outdoor Lifestyle Concepts and Deck Creations.
Mr Joyner has issued the public warning notice on the basis that:
- he has reasonable grounds to suspect that Mr Johnson’s activities may constitute a breach of the Australian Consumer Law (ACL)
- consumers have suffered detriment as a result of his actions, and
- he is satisfied that it is in the public interest to issue the warning.
Consumer Affairs Victoria obtained injunctions against Mr Johnson in March 2005, restraining him from accepting payment for goods and services prior to completing works. The injunctions remain in place.
The public warning notice follows complaints received about Mr Johnson, which included allegations that he has taken payment for work he has not done at all, or left incomplete, or completed below standard.
Consumers who contacted Consumer Affairs Victoria between October 2018 and February 2020 reported that, among other things, Mr Johnson:
- offered free quotations for works including decking, pergolas and patios, verbally or via web-based service platforms
- advised that he was a registered builder when he was not
- advised that works did not require a building permit when they did
- sought up-front deposits, typically in cash or via direct deposit
- did not provide invoices for payments made by clients
- made a series of excuses not to complete work, or to fix faults in partially completed work
- refused to discuss rectifying work
- ignored calls and clients’ attempts to contact him over work he had failed to complete.
Mr Joyner has urged consumers not to engage Mr Johnson’s services or, if they have engaged him, not to pay him any money until works he has completed are rectified to building standards.
If you are approached by Mr Johnson, or he has asked you to make any payment, please contact us for advice using our General enquiry form.
Further information about seeking a qualified tradesperson, including a link to a list of registered builders, see About builders, tradespeople and other building practitioners.
Download the public warning
Michael Johnson - Public warning notice (PDF 249KB)