Assume nothing is my mantra for this build. I didn't follow my mantra for getting our sewer trench dug. I went against my better instincts and let the guy we got in to do the work without me there. There was one primary instruction given and that was to avoid putting the trench through any of our painstakingly made post holes. Guess what?
With 2.3 metres to play with, the trench went almost right through the hole. To add insult to injury, the bill came through as more than twice what we had expected based on our conversations with him. This is a generalisation - but don't trust tradespeople to do what you tell them to. There is no accountability and when (it seems to us) they whack on a few extra thousand at a whim, based on a wild estimate, it's insulting.
So here's a clause to add to my mantra - never let a tradie on site to do a job when we are not there. And when they are there, watch them like a bloody eagle.