September 13, 2018

at a loss, contractor style

We hired a new contractor July 15th.  He came highly recommended by my appliance saleswoman.  I mean, come on - we had totally learned our lesson, right? 

During the whole suckie contractor situation, the appliance lady kept insisting that she wished we had gone with this guy who does so much work in our town.  His storefront is not far from our home.  Oh, believe me my rear end was sore from all the imaginary kicking of myself I was doing.

Now I am not so sure that I needed to kick myself so hard.  Perhaps I should have geared my kicking elsewhere.  Insert:  heaviest sigh imaginable. 

The new contractor, who I will now refer to as Mr. Italy or just Italy because that is where he is from, seemed to know his stuff.  He pointed out things that suckie had messed up - stuff that we hadn't even caught. 

Remember the two cabinets that couldn't open at the same time, because suckie hadn't utilized a spacer?  Mr. Italy agreed to take the cabinets down, insert a spacer, and put the cabinets back up.  I was excited. 

I made a list of all of the stuff that still needed to be handled.  Most of it was itty bitty stuff.  Put a dimmer switch in the kitchen so we can stop getting a sunburn when the light fixture over the table is on.  I emailed Italy this list per his request and he came over to have me sign a contract.  Of course, he wanted money.  Oh, how I wish these contractors could just be paid when the work was complete.

Italy and his people have done a few things.  Literally.  A few.  There are a few plate covers on the outlets that hd no plate covers.  The cabinet spacer thing has been fixed.  Both cabinets can open now. 

Most of the time, I just wait.  I text Mr. Italy.  'Anyone coming today?'  He is all smiles and jokes and assurances in his thick accent.  I was hosting two parties over the weekend.  He assured me that the work would be done before the main party.  Guess what?  Not even close. 

Note the light fixture in the background.
  It is typically off, because we would
 need to don sunglasses until they put
 in a damn dimmer switch.  Coach could
do this, but the man doesn't have
 time to put his laundry away.
The biggest issues remain:  no hood and no barn doors. 

Remember the leaking ceiling?  The damn ice dam?  Then the kids' bathroom that started to leak into the kitchen?  (Did I ever tell you about this?  Can't find a post to share).

Italy checked out the kids' bathroom.  He told Coach that the floor of the shower needed to be replaced.  This is a shower that was just done about 6 years ago.  By a professional.  Not sure if I should laugh or cry here.  Coach wanted to continue to attempt to seal the bathroom shower floor.  His re-grout or re-seal job had kept the ceiling from leaking into the kitchen for about 5 weeks.  I wanted it to be fixed properly.  I believe that Italy does things correctly.  It just takes a long time for he and his people to show up.  Sound familiar?  So for $2,500 we are getting a new shower floor.

Best to not blow this photo up to see
any of the detail.  I took this after
 they poured the cement threshold.
  They say that the original guy
 should have used cement and he only
used wood, and that was the problem.
 If you look closely you will see a small
 sand timer on the shower ledge.  It makes
 me laugh to think that my kids
 pretend to time their showers.  AS IF. 
I know my little job is not a priority.  I begged him to get the kitchen done for the party.  Instead they came and ripped up the shower.  Italy insisted that the shower would only be out of commission for 3 days.  While components of the shower work needed to dry, the workers would finish the small kitchen stuff.  Not so much. 

The shower was torn up on Labor Day.  Weird, I know.  The workers were shocked at what they saw.  I think we are lucky that the shower didn't crash into the kitchen at some point.  There was mold.  There were worms.  Gross doesn't begin to cover it.  I assume that Coach and I have the same issue in our shower, because the same guy did that.  The only difference:  2 showers a day vs. 6 kid showers a day.  So the shower started on Sept 3rd.  The kids are scoring showers in other available bathrooms.    Yes, that is just as crazy convenient as you are imagining it to be.  So much for 3 days.

Nothing was done in the kitchen while a bathroom floor dried.  NOTHING.  I texted Mr. Italy yesterday.  'I really did not expect to text every day and beg for the work to be completed in my house.'  He texted back that he was coming later in the day.  No show.  This morning I texted, 'Today?'  He texted back 'yes'.  He was here for 5 minutes at 4:00.  I was busy handing off a baby to a mom, so I didn't speak to him.  Besides my vocab is limited in situations like this to 4 letter words.  . 

At a loss.  In more ways than one. 


Gigi said...

Contractors are the worst...even the good ones. We once added a dining room onto our first house as my in-laws were coming to town for Thanksgiving. The only way my husband got the contractor to finish was to ask him "Are you married? Yes. Well then you know what I am going through here. My wife is crazy angry and guess who she is taking it out on? ME! If you don't get out here, I will unleash her on you!" The contractor finished the job just in the nick of time but refused to look me in the eye as he did so.

Ernie said...

Ha! The little party that I hosted on Sunday wasn't enough of a major event to light a fire under this guy. I just don't get it though. It seems to be industry wide. I was watching an episode of Property Brothers yesterday, and I actually thought that I should send them a letter. Beg them to come and work their magic and prove that all contractors are not the same.

Beth (A Moms Life) said...

How frustrating this must be! I can't even begin to imagine. But on a positive note, thank goodness your shower floor did not cave in!

Ernie said...

I don't think we are alone in struggling with contractors. Anyone who has a good, reliable contractor should hug him!