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Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

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Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Denise Cold on Sun Jun 05, 2011 3:39 pm

All of my 25+ year marriage I've done everything myself...or nearly everything...and even remodeled 4 homes completely for resale. I've used the library and internet to learn to do things properly and have found many times that I know more, with the little research I've done, than people claiming to have been "20 years in the business."

Today we went over to one of our 4-plex apartments where we were getting solid vinyl tiles installed. I was hesitant to hire someone because I usually do the work myself but this was a much larger job (kitchen). When my husband was hiring the guy I told him to ask a few key questions so we could tell if was legit: Do you start in the middle? How do you put the tiles together? (You are supposed to slide the tiles out from the seam so that they don't separate...the glue creates a tension that keeps them together tightly.)

Anyway...long story short he didn't start in the middle as promised but started at the edge and was already having problems with a gap at the edge. On top of that, he put tiles under the fridge and the stove BEFORE he started which means there will be a cut edge at the factory edge (not to mention weird sized tiles.)

I called the supervisor on the phone and he immediately was defensive and pulled the "I've been doing this for 15 years..." stuff when I told him it was wrong. I'd had it and I said "Well, I guess it's time for you to read a book and start doing it right!" (Not my brightest moment.)

I'm just so frustrated. I'm tired of not being able to find people to do the work. The good ones are too expensive and too busy even if you do have the money. The ones that are supposed to be good, do it wrong (had an electrician tell me he could make electrical junctions in a wall...didn't hire him.)

We've had 6,000 dollars stolen from us, had to take another guy to court, had them tell us wrong information over and over, kill trees with back hoes, taken a chunk out of a chimney & sidewalk, etc. etc.

Just venting and mad.

Denise

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Denise Cold

Number of posts : 2717
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Guest on Sun Jun 05, 2011 8:32 pm

Feel for you... I'm not much of DIY type, but have lots of experience hiring people... and it is frustrating.

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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by eva on Sun Jun 05, 2011 10:17 pm

Ahhh Denise, that really sucks. I feel so blessed that my bf husband always makes time to do the jobs I need done, and he is meticulous. That is so horrible, and I know so many people who have been ripped off, sadly it gives a lot of good guys bad names too.
I hope you can find someone dependable, and seems that saying " If you want it done right, then you have to do it yourself" sucks, but rings so true. You shouldn't have to breathe down someones neck and babysit them to make sure they do their job right.
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It's worse than I imagined it would be...

Post by Denise Cold on Sun Jun 05, 2011 11:25 pm

Well, we got a call and he said he was done and said "It looks fabulous if I do say so myself, even without a book!" and proceeded to ask for 50% more money for the job. We went over to the apartment and I have a mix of anger and satisfaction right now, because Mr. 15 years did such a CRAPPY job that it proves that he obviously doesn't know what he's doing. I'll post some of the choice ones.

You can see how having small strips at the edges create all kinds of problems. He didn't undercut the door trim so every door has huge gaps around it. All under the sink was 1.5 inch strips. There is ink all over the cuts, I didn't even have cleaner to see if it would come out and he used Goof Off instead of paint thinner to clean and left about 10 bleach rings on the tan tiles and de-glossed about every tile.

Just goes to show if it quacks like a duck...it's probably a pig going to take your money and make you miserable.

D.









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Denise Cold

Number of posts : 2717
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by eva on Sun Jun 05, 2011 11:32 pm

That looks like crap! Looks like it has been there 20 years, and def looks like another small claims court case to me. What is wrong with people these days. Well if he can even read a book, bc it looks like he can't read a tape measure. He should of measured the cuts and put the marks on the back, so there wasn't ink all over. If I were you I would be really PO'd right now.
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eva

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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Denise Cold on Sun Jun 05, 2011 11:38 pm

If we didn't have tenants moving in on Tuesday I probably would have told him to leave right then and there on the phone. I'm just tired of having to do things myself because we can't find someone decent...this reinforces that belief.

Denise
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Denise Cold

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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by eva on Sun Jun 05, 2011 11:43 pm

I am sorry *hugs*. Magic eraser might take those pen marks up without further damaging the tiles. I used it one my laminate wood when my son colored with permanent markers, and it did the trick.
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Denise Cold on Sun Jun 05, 2011 11:45 pm

Cool. I have one, I'll try it.
Thanks,
D.
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Denise Cold

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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Lynnie on Mon Jun 06, 2011 12:11 pm

We have a contractor coming tomorrow to give us an estimate on redoing our only bathroom and possibly installing a 1/2 bath downstairs. This made me nervous!

Sorry about your bad experience, Denise! Do you ever ask for references from previous jobs or photos? That's one of the first things on my list of questions.
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Psalmbook on Mon Jun 06, 2011 2:05 pm

I don't know if this is any good, but it's been advertised on the tv & radio
http://angieslist.com/
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Lynnie on Mon Jun 06, 2011 2:51 pm

I will say we have roofers here right now that are awesome...and soooo hot. It's home repair and a show all in one! Wink
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Denise Cold on Mon Jun 06, 2011 3:53 pm

Lynnie,
My best advice is to take the time to put everything in writing. "Contractor will remove all old tile and dispose of it. Contractor will install this tile with this grout and will seal all joints according to manufacturers instructions....etc."

It's a pain but then you'll both be on the same sheet of music. The court case I won was won because he failed to re-write the contract with the changes in it...but that was because he wrote the original contract.

Good luck!

D.
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Denise Cold

Number of posts : 2717
Age : 52
Location : Orem, UT
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Guest on Mon Jun 06, 2011 10:15 pm

Good lord... I could have done that better! And he wanted MORE money?????

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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Denise Cold on Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:08 am

Shannon, I know...dumbfounded! I've done better! And in the bathroom of that very apartment! :p

Linda, we were thinking of signing back up for Angie's list again just for him. We signed up after our landscaper stole $6,000 from us. It's really informational but most of the listings were out of Salt Lake because it's the biggest nearby city. Didn't have much Ut. Co. companies listed....and you have to pay to be a member.
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Denise Cold

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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Psalmbook on Tue Jun 07, 2011 8:22 am

Lynnie wrote:I will say we have roofers here right now that are awesome...and soooo hot. It's home repair and a show all in one! Wink

Can you say "Body Painting" Wink
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Psalmbook on Tue Jun 07, 2011 8:23 am

That stinks that you have to pay to rate them....
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Denise Cold on Wed Jun 15, 2011 2:57 am

In an interesting twist we've been summoned to court to testify for the state against the landscaper that took our money last summer. I don't know if they actually have him or if they are just going through procedures but WE'LL be there. Luckily I wrote everything down when it happened.
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Denise Cold

Number of posts : 2717
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Denise Cold on Thu Jun 30, 2011 3:13 am

Update on our $6,000 dollars lost contractor...he's been extradited from Texas and is in jail here in our county facility. We have been summoned to court on July 13th to testify. We aren't going to get our money back but at least he won't be able to rip anyone else off.

D/
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Denise Cold

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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by fairyfox on Wed Jan 02, 2013 5:49 pm

Hey Denise, I had no idea you were a genius! cool.
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by Denise Cold on Wed Jan 02, 2013 6:23 pm

Oh, you have no idea. Cool A couple of months after this I did a whole livingroom in the vinyl tiles and it was FABULOUS.
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Denise Cold

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Age : 52
Location : Orem, UT
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by JennyNixe on Wed Jan 02, 2013 8:07 pm

Actually, you can rate service providers without being a member on Angie's List. The ratings just don't count towards the contractor's overall "grade", but you can still get the info out there. On the other hand, we are members of Angie's List and have found good people through it. It costs $29 a year in our area, which is a good deal.
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Re: Can't hire a good contractor/handyman to save my life...

Post by TinafromNY on Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:55 pm

Wow Denise...that's like the worst tile job I ever saw. I'm like you...I renovated 3 houses myself in my lifetime. I would definitely take the guys to court, good thing you took pictures, get at least part of your money back. Sorry to hear this happened to you :-(
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