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Lost my temper on contractor!


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Faye's Forum Posts: 286
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By Faye in Marseilles, IL on 10/16/2008


I spoke to a contractor about doing some excavating for me. My husband has been in the excavation business for 20 yrs and works for a very large corporation. I used to own an erosion control company and my clients included some of the largest excavation companies in the world. We did our own foundation work but right now my husband is working 7 days a week repairing a tollway -- so I decided to hire this small job out. When I first spoke to the sub -- he gave me an hourly rate that was very reasonable and we discussed the scope of work. We both agreed it should take two days and be appx. $2K.

Monday he showed up with a backhoe and we laid out the area to be dug. He then informs me that he is going to now charge me by the yard and it will be $4K. I explained to him that was not in my budget and therefore we will not need his services. Since I hadn't signed a contract -- there was not much he could do but he then started to complain about how he had to haul the machine out and he planned to have three days of work and now he was out. I don't know if it was the stress of the build or if I am just sick and tired of people treating me like I'm stupid and they can take advantage but I lost it. My DH says I "went off like an Irish car bomb."  I let him have it for a couple minutes and then threw him off my property. I did not enjoy it, but I don't feel bad because the guy had it coming and maybe he'll think twice about trying to jack up the next person's bill. Hopefully this will be the last bombing at my place -'- anyone else have any similar experiences? Thanks for letting me vent -- I'm still kinda wound up! LOL
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By Grant in Blacksburg, VA on 10/16/2008


I laughed the moment I read your entry title "lost my temper..."

Good for you!  "Bait and switch" didn't pay off for that sub and hopefully it cost him a fair amount (mobilization/demobilization and lost opportunity costs).  Sorry it also cost you your time and composure.

I'm not looking forward to this side of being an O-B.  But reading posts like yours remind me why it is going to be necessary and are preparing me and "steeling" me to handle it.  I've just got to swallow the fact that it is part of "the job" of an O-B. 

I realize that bringing in a sub was a last minute change from your plans to DIY.  But your experience does remind me that to save time and aggravation, I want detailed signed contracts "ahead of time" as much as is practical so that yahoos like this realize up-front that such crap isn't going to happen on my project.  I don't want such idiots delaying my projects and forcing last minute re-grouping.  Too much aggravation.

For most homeowners, the extra $2,000 to get it done while he was there would have seemed less costly than project delays, re-scheduling of subsequent work, and all of the time and aggravation involved.  He knew that, and without a signed contract, he thought he'd force you to pay him twice what he quoted.  With your unusually flexible schedule, you were lucky that you had the upper hand. 

If I was you, with your industry connections, I'd spread the word about his business "tactics" far and wide.  Such "scammers" REALLY p**s me off!

Regards,

Grant


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By Tom in Stroudsburg, PA on 10/17/2008


I gave you 5 stars hope that helps.   Well done.
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By Faye in Marseilles, IL on 10/18/2008


Thanks Grant,  I ended up calling the rental company and they are delivering a backhoe next weekend so it's not really a problem. It just made me really angry because he totally insulted my intelligence! I am in a very small area and I definitely will be spreading the word about him. LOL He did have a helper with him and had to travel 40 miles -- so it did cost him. Also -- thanks for the stars Tom.
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