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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 03:47 am
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WongLee
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srossi wrote: WongLee wrote: Does this guy have any internet presence such as a small website or on Yelp or Google or some other review site? You can crush him there and that would put a stake in the heart of possible future clients.

If not, sometimes you just have to bite the bullet. The shit has to be fixed. Period. Swallow the bitter pill and pay some pros to finish the job correctly and get your home back to being your home.

The funny thing is my wife added him on Facebook and I don't think he ever unfriended her. But as far as professional sites, I haven't found him anywhere. 

And yeah, we've already moved on and have someone coming to work on it tomorrow. It's not like we're waiting for the refund before hiring someone else. But I just sent him another text about an hour ago. My next play is to threaten a lawyer and if there's still no reply I have a lawyer friend who can send him a letter on his stationary to try to scare him. But I have no intention of actually pursuing it so the smartest thing he could do is just never reply and call my bluff, which I believe is exactly what he's going to do. 



Bluffs can work very well. My current wife was having a very hard time with her ex-husband as far as some financial matters of their union. I did the exact same thing you stated here. I had a lawler friend of mine send him a threatening letter saying that she was ready, willing, and able to go to court and he capitulated like a Frenchman. She did not have the funds nor the desire to take the asshole to court but the bluff worked like a charm.



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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 06:01 am
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HBF



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gwlee7 wrote: People who don't give a shit won't appear in small claims court. You will be found in favor of and still not get your money. Make sure he isn't totally off the grid so you can lein his car, house or something. If not, you'll pay the filing fee, be out the $700 still, and just be even more pissed.Great advice here.



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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 06:50 am
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Blazer
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Raditch- This is neither here nor there, but I like the architectural shingles. Those looks like Certainteed Landmarks. We went with Weathered Wood when he had our roof done...but the Georgetown looks good on your house with the color palette. Nice.



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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 06:53 am
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Blazer
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Rossi-

You already admitted your first mistake...leaving town and letting these guys do their own thing in your own house. Whenever we have projects going, we'll check the progress every night after work.  But we are here.

Not sure if all contractors work this way, but whenever we've had work done on our house (stucco, roof, paint, two bathrooms, basement floor, electrical work...probably 15 different jobs, if not more, over the past 10 years), we always pay at the end of the job. Contractor doesn't get shit up front. We write the check out after the work is done and we get a day or two to inspect it. Never give these guys anything up front. We will buy material if they're using it, but that's on our own dime w/ a receipt. They get nothing for labor until the job is 100% complete.

Last edited on Tue Nov 1st, 2016 06:54 am by Blazer



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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 07:50 am
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Principal_Raditch



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Blazer wrote: Rossi-

You already admitted your first mistake...leaving town and letting these guys do their own thing in your own house. Whenever we have projects going, we'll check the progress every night after work.  But we are here.

Not sure if all contractors work this way, but whenever we've had work done on our house (stucco, roof, paint, two bathrooms, basement floor, electrical work...probably 15 different jobs, if not more, over the past 10 years), we always pay at the end of the job. Contractor doesn't get shit up front. We write the check out after the work is done and we get a day or two to inspect it. Never give these guys anything up front. We will buy material if they're using it, but that's on our own dime w/ a receipt. They get nothing for labor until the job is 100% complete.

Same here. My wife learned that lesson years ago when she gave her cousin's husband @ 1500 up front to do some painting, and the guy did shit all. Right now, I"m not paying anything at all till my full exterior is finished. Not labor, not materials...zero. So it's in their best interest to do the job efficiently or they're wasting their own time. 

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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 09:29 am
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Angelic Assassin



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WongLee wrote: Angelic Assassin wrote: Know any cops?  If he's got your house key I would send the cops around to retrieve it or hunt him down and kill him till he's dead and then kill him a little more.

I like this. I like this alot.
I'd also consider finding our where he lives and then paying someone to fuck with his closets and give him an extra bedroom doorway.



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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 04:53 pm
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This thread is good for pointers. Due to little issues popping up over the past year in the house we bought (it's 75 years old), we've had to address each one. One of them was a drain pipe from our kitchen that runs to the sewer line outside, busted underneath our concrete front porch. I did most of the work on that by renting a jackhammer and busting up the porch and digging down to the busted pipe. Unfortunately, it was a "finders" game, because we weren't certain where the leak was exactly. We only found out it was leaking because there was water coming through the carpet in the basement. We followed that to the wall, opened the drywall and found it was coming down the interior concrete basement wall, only to trace it up to an old basement window that had been boarded up, and then the bricks from outside covered it (otherwise, we never would have known it was there). That busted pipe eventually washed out that basement window and leaked into our basement.

We had a plumber come and fix the pipe, but now I have two gigantic holes in my porch. I've filled them in, but it's been a couple of weeks and I need to have them refilled with concrete and patched up. I'm not sure I'm the one to do that, as I've never done it before and I don't want to attempt, fuck it up and end up with cracks in 6 months.

I also have to rehang the walls in my basement and figure out what to do about the floor, since the carpet that was down there was ruined.

Upstairs, the carpet throughout the main level had to go. So I just recently pulled 75% of that up, and I have nice wood floors. Unfortunately, it seems as the previous owners had the walls painted before the carpet was put down and didn't bother to cover the wood floors, so it has tons of paint throughout. I'll need those floors refinished. But our dining room, when we attempted to pull that carpet, has no wood floor, only sub flooring. So I'll also have to put in a new floor. Never done that before, so I don't feel comfortable trying it, so I'll have to hire someone.

So should I always buy the materials or should I let the contractor do that (due to maybe getting a better price on materials)?

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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 05:49 pm
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srossi
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DaNkinator wrote: So should I always buy the materials or should I let the contractor do that (due to maybe getting a better price on materials)?
I've always let the contractor buy the materials and present receipts unless it's cosmetic and I want to have a say in it.  Most seem to have contacts or can go to wholesalers.  I don't feel like I've ever been screwed on that end, although I'm sure some contractors will try something.  But as long as you're asking for receipts, there's not a whole lot they can do.  The only pitfall is that they won't have the same incentive as you to get the best deal if they're lazy, but at the same time you don't have to deal with shopping and delivering the materials home, so it still might be worth it.

My house has basically been under constant construction and remodeling for 2 years now and, although the contractors have done tons of annoying things and never finish on time, I can't say I've had any really horrible experiences until now.  Deadlines mean nothing to them though.  We're not talking days, we're talking MONTHS over sometimes.  Even the guy who was installing my central AC started in May and didn't finish until mid-July.  It's so hard to get these guys to come back once they're done for the day.  But so far I've never experienced someone price gouging me or quoting me one price and then trying to get more at the end of the project. 

Last edited on Tue Nov 1st, 2016 05:54 pm by srossi



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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 07:15 pm
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We been doing this for 2 years now as well. In the fall of 2014 we replaced the roof and @ 16/25 windows. Last summer it was the open area flooring all to hardwood. Now it's the exterior and the deck. Over this winter I will also be repainting the whole interior of the house except for the basement since it's the original paint from 20 years ago. We will also take out the carpet in our bedroom and put in hardwood, and have tile done in our bathroom and the hall bathroom and drop 2 new toilets on once that's done. After that, it should really minimize going forward. We're basically doing 15-20 years worth of stuff all in this 3 year window. Most of the projects going forward will be small in nature. The only really big one left to do would be our basement, but for now I'm not really motivated to have that finished and it's not a necessity .

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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 07:20 pm
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Since we bought ours only less than two years ago, we're still in planning stages for what we want to do. But right now, we're just dealing with repairs instead of updates. Eventually plan on completely remodeling the kitchen (knocking down a wall to expand it into the current unused den).

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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 07:29 pm
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srossi
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Tom just texted me back.  He claims he answered my first text but forgot to hit send.  Right.  He says he'll give me the $700 back but claims that every dime I gave him went to materials and nothing went to labor, which is complete bullshit.  There's no way he spent $1400 in plaster or whatever.  He didn't even buy the closet doors yet.  So that's the update, but of course he doesn't provide any specifics on exactly when or where he's planning on refunding me, and giving me back my house key, so I have to follow up with him again.  Nailing him down is going to take a month probably.

Last edited on Tue Nov 1st, 2016 07:29 pm by srossi



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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 09:49 pm
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dogfacedgremlin34
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srossi wrote: Tom just texted me back.  He claims he answered my first text but forgot to hit send.  Right.  He says he'll give me the $700 back but claims that every dime I gave him went to materials and nothing went to labor, which is complete bullshit.  There's no way he spent $1400 in plaster or whatever.  He didn't even buy the closet doors yet.  So that's the update, but of course he doesn't provide any specifics on exactly when or where he's planning on refunding me, and giving me back my house key, so I have to follow up with him again.  Nailing him down is going to take a month probably.
Re: returning texts and not hitting send. The last contractor we hired used that same exact excuse when we had a dispute with him, I kid you not. That must be on page 1 of the Big Book of Contractor Excuses; either that or they're too stupid to know how to send a text. 



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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 09:52 pm
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srossi
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dogfacedgremlin34 wrote: srossi wrote: Tom just texted me back.  He claims he answered my first text but forgot to hit send.  Right.  He says he'll give me the $700 back but claims that every dime I gave him went to materials and nothing went to labor, which is complete bullshit.  There's no way he spent $1400 in plaster or whatever.  He didn't even buy the closet doors yet.  So that's the update, but of course he doesn't provide any specifics on exactly when or where he's planning on refunding me, and giving me back my house key, so I have to follow up with him again.  Nailing him down is going to take a month probably.
Re: returning texts and not hitting send. The last contractor we hired used that same exact excuse when we had a dispute with him, I kid you not. That must be on page 1 of the Big Book of Contractor Excuses; either that or they're too stupid to know how to send a text. 

I've seen it with e-mails, and even done it a couple of times myself when I save something as a draft and then forget to send it, but for the life of me I can't figure out how you do that with a text.



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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 11:17 pm
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Portalesman
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1. Dont hire a Handy Man for anything over $7OO.

2. Make your contractor supply materials. You only cause yourself grief otherwise.

3. Agree on a finish date and stick to it. Add it to the contract.

4. Only bums and shady businesses need money down for jobs under 3OK. Its not your job to finance his business. Tell em to go to the bank.

5. Add performance draws to the contract. i.e. A payment can be made\invoiced upon installation of windows, paint completion, etc.

6. Dont hire family or *people your wifes friend* knows.

7. Keep in mind and come to terms with the fact that you arent the only customer in the world and sometimes youll get fucked off for a couple days for somebody that screams louder. Your builder will be fucking somebody else off for a couple days because you screamed louder sometime.

8. If you feel you know more about it than your builder, do it yourself. Construction folk are like the food service industry. Fuck with em too much and theyll spit on your burger. They can and WILL charge above contract amount if you cause too much grief over something you saw on a Home Improvement TV show.

9. Either way, your wife is gonna cry. The wife ALWAYS knows more about it than her builder does. Mostly because they build brand new houses in 3O minutes on a TV show she saw, or pinterest. Also her friends\co workers will fuck with her about it and youll have to deal with the crazy. Leave the women out of it as much as you can. They arent built to deal with this kinda stress.

1O. Just because a builder was great last year, doesnt mean he is this year.

Rossi, youre not gonna get any money out of this guy. Chalk it up to experience and move on.



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 Posted: Tue Nov 1st, 2016 11:55 pm
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srossi
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3. Agree on a finish date and stick to it. Add it to the contract.

This one's tricky.  I've almost never had someone finish on time, even with a contract.  The contract is meaningless unless you start threatening to take them to court over it, and it's just not worth the hassle for delays if the work is otherwise good and I haven't paid yet.  This relates to points 7 and 8 and is more trouble than it's worth.  I generally add 2 weeks to the contracted end date in my head, and in some cases that's still not enough time.  If the work is high quality and is getting done, I've resigned myself to the fact that they're going to finish when they finish and there's not much I can do about it.

We'll see if I ever get the money back.  He's back in contact with me and trying to come up with a time to meet, which makes no sense if he doesn't intend to pay me back, but nothing these guys do makes any sense. 

Last edited on Tue Nov 1st, 2016 11:57 pm by srossi



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