It was supposed to be the renovation that turned a newly bought property into a dream family home.
Nestled on a leafy street in Leicester, the four-bedroom house had been undergoing work to add an extension big enough to give all six family members a bedroom.
It was with some considerable horror, therefore, that the new owners returned from holiday to find the builders gone and what bedrooms they did have now lacking a roof.
A dispute over payments had allegedly led the builder who oversaw the project to not only down tools, but actively undone the work they had done so far.
Their handiwork has left the home, bought last year for £475,000, effectively lying in ruins with a front garden piled high with rubble.
The house has been left with its roof missing and rubble scattered all around after a builder decided to undo the work he'd done following a row about cash
The 40-year-old owner of the house, in the city’s Stoneygate area, said he had hired a builder to carry out the renovations in February.
He had paid for a two-storey extension to his home and an enlarged kitchen and dining room.
"I bought the house last year and employed a builder to start work in February,” the homeowner said.
"We wanted lots of work doing so it could be our family home for six of us.
"The work included a two-storey extension, a new roof, wiring and we wanted it to be more environmentally-friendly."
A few months into the project, however, the builder asked for an additional sum of £3,500 for additional work, according to the homeowner.
He refused to pay the extra money, with consequences that have meant his house can now offer even fewer bedrooms than when he first bought it.
One of the destroyed rooms
Last week, he says that neighbours saw the builders destroying the work he had already completed on the property while the family was on holiday.
The owner, who is a solutions architect for an IT firm, said: "I was on holiday 200 miles away when all the scaffolding was taken down and the house damaged.
"When I called the police, they told me they couldn’t do anything because it is a dispute so not a criminal case.
"I’ve emailed Trading Standards but I’m still away so it’s difficult to sort it all out."
He added: "It’s a nightmare, unfortunately I picked the worst builder in Britain.”
Neighbours living in the street said they "watched in disbelief" as the builders demolished much of the house with a digger.
One said: "There was scaffolding on the house and when it was taken down I did think the work might be done already and the owners might be moving in.
"I was stunned when I walked past the house last week and saw that the roof had been ripped off and the new extension was just a hole in the front of the house.
"I feel badly for the owners, they must be absolutely gutted."
Properties on the pleasant tree-lined avenue average at more than £540,000
Another neighbour told LeicestershireLive the building work had left the street a mess.
They said: "The work had been going on and there was scaffolding up and it all had planning permission.
"Then people noticed the builders starting to remove things and demolish the work that had been done.
"The neighbours are really upset with how it looks and the fact it has also ruined the pavement."
A spokesman for Leicestershire Police said: "Police received a report on (June 1) regarding a dispute over the quality of some building work carried out in Guildford Road, Leicester.
"The caller was advised that the dispute was a civil matter and further advice was issued in relation to who the caller could make contact with to assist with the matter."