A disgruntled painter who says he was left out of pocket by a difficult customer has left this gentle reminder to pay up.

Decorator Dean Reeves, 50, claims he is owed £500 for his work and took revenge by daubing the message on the wall of an old pub in Bolsover, Derbyshire.

In big black letters, he wrote: ‘Want your house painting? Don’t be like Terry, pay the bill! Now you will!” over the cream exterior he had painted.’

Dean claims he was paid just £650 of the £1,150 agreed price for the job on the former North Star Cub, which is being converted into flats.

The painter explained how he worked through his lunch for seven days to get the job finished on time, but still kept on hearing excuses from Terry Turner over why he wasn’t being paid.

Dean added: ‘He kept saying, “I’ll pay you tomorrow”, but tomorrow never came.

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‘I did the work and he said if I go back to give the back of the building another coat, he would pay me.’

The dad-of-two did what was asked but says Terry kept on trying to ‘change the job halfway through’ and ‘asking for more work’ that wasn’t agreed on in his quote.

He claims the customer told him: ‘You’re not getting paid a penny until you’ve done the fascias,’ despite it not being part of the original job.

Two days later Dean says he decided to take drastic action by leaving leaving his revenge message.

He added: ‘It was my first job back since Christmas, I have bills to pay and need to make money.

‘It just got too much and I wanted to prove the point. I don’t regret it and I’d do it again if I had to.

‘I was never going to get paid, but I wanted to make sure he had to pay something to get it cleared off.’

Dean says he couldn’t carry out the work using scaffolding as intended because Terry hadn’t removed signs and guttering like he was supposed to.

He says he instead did the job off ladders and took the signs off himself, saving his client £900.

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Terry denied ripping Dean off and said he was going to pay in full once the work had been completed.

He said: ‘The bloke is a prat. He should have just done the work and he would have been paid in full. It’s standard.

‘None of what he says is true. He wasn’t asked to do additional work, it was offset work by other jobs he was meant to do but didn’t.

‘It was his idea, he said he would do some other jobs to offset what he wasn’t doing. He was getting paid the same to do less work.

‘I wasn’t going to pay him for the whole job until he finished it, no one would.

‘At the beginning he even said he’d do the work before getting paid at all, but I said no.’

He says halfway through the job, the painter then changed his tune and decided to ask for all the money up front.

After discovering the graffiti he says he has reported the incident to Derbyshire Police.

He added: ‘I found out about it last night but I’m completely unbothered. It’s just paint, the idiot.

‘I’m the boss, so I’m just going to go round and paint over it. Do his job for him. It’ll be done by the end of the day.

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‘I don’t understand why you would waste your time painting that nonsense instead of doing your job, when in that time you could have finished it. This is the first and last time I’m working with this man.’

A Derbyshire police spokesman said: ‘We received a call this morning reporting that a property in Welbeck Road, Bolsover had had graffiti painted onto it.

‘It appears to be a dispute between two parties and we will be getting in touch with those involved in due course.’