As sad as it is to say, people get duped by bad contractors all of the time. Whether they were scammed out of money, or the contractors did a poor job that needs repair, it can be a nightmare having to face the fact that you’re back to square one. So what steps do you take now? We have a few tips to help alleviate the stress of finding out the contractor you trusted did a bad job on your home.
Take Pictures of the Bad Workmanship
First things first, you should document all of the poor work so you can use it in a claim or lawsuit once you confront the contractor. These will come in handy and help support the claim that they did a terrible job.
Fire Your Contractor
Obviously, fire that contractor right away. Don’t ask them to fix their mistake; you should find someone else to do that for you later on. Note: Always closely read any contracts you sign closely to ensure any clauses about work not being up to standard.
Immediately Ask for a Refund
If this contractor did a poor job, then they definitely did not follow through with their promise to deliver work that met your standards. Ask them immediately for a refund, or negotiate a refund. Doing so would mean you wouldn’t have to go through the pain of filing a lawsuit, which is terrible and timely for everyone involved.
File a Complaint With Your State’s Licensing Board
All contractors need to be licensed with the state to do their work. By filing a complaint right to the licensing board, they will then have to deal with them, and you can step back. Even threatening to contact the licensing board can often be enough for a contractor to want to remedy the situation one-on-one rather than risk losing their license. Of course, depending on the severity of the work or scam, it can be smart to go right to the licensing board to prevent them from doing the same to other homeowners.
Leave a Bad Review
Reviews are a key indicator of how good or bad a contractor maybe—people often fully rely on reviews to determine which contractor they want to hire. So leaving a bad review on all of their pages (Google, Facebook, Better Business Bureau) really hits them where it hurts. You will also help fellow homeowners that go to read those reviews and save them from going through what you have to. It may also urge them to want to refund you and help fix the situation not to have their name tainted.
Hire an Attorney
If you find yourself not getting anywhere by dealing with the contractor on your own, it can be smart to hire an attorney to help you get a claim filed. An attorney knows all of the ins and outs of dealing with scammers and bad contracting work and can get you settled quickly. They can help you determine where to file your complaints and get you on the right track to suing them for a refund.
Take Them to Small Claims Court
When push comes to shove, you will want to consider taking that bad contractor to small claims court. Of course, a small claims court often has a limit to how much the lawsuit can be for ($15,000 or so), and as long as you aren’t suing for more, you should be able to handle it here. Small claims court will allow you to have a judge take over and settle the dispute between both parties.
Find a New Contractor to Fix the Work
Once you’ve gotten your refund or settled a lawsuit and now have the means to fix your home, do so right away. The longer a poorly installed roof or siding sits, the more chances it has to create more damage as water seeps in, causing mold and mildew growth, amongst other damage.
To avoid something like this happening in the future, there are some good steps to follow when hiring a contractor, such as:
- Hiring local. Local contractors live in the area, know the area, and more often than not, have a local following that share good reviews, and you’ll know by word of mouth how legit they are.
- Verify their credentials. Always ask to see licensing and insurance information from your roofing contractor. They should be fully willing to share this information with you and any other certifications they possess.
- Read reviews! Like we’ve said, reviews should be your first stop when researching local contractors. Satisfied customers are very willing to share their experiences to help other homeowners, and dissatisfied customers are even more inclined to leave reviews, so always check the 1 and 2-star reviews.
- Research their reputation. A proud, trustworthy contractor is easily detected online via their social presence and their website. A good contractor will have a beautiful website where you can easily contact them, they offer free estimates for other specials, and they are active on social media. This shows that they are invested in their business and really care about their customers.
Should you ever find yourself in this situation, please call Secured Roofing & Restoration right away so we can help you get back to where you need to be. And in the meantime, check out these other reasons why you should hire a local contractor. It’s worth it!