Hired Trouble
Click here for Top Ten Discussions. CLICK HERE for Q & A Homepage
Receive Free Rental Owner Updates Email:  
MrLandlord Q & A
Hired Trouble (by Chris [VA]) Jul 10, 2018 4:19 PM
       Hired Trouble (by DJ [VA]) Jul 10, 2018 4:49 PM
       Hired Trouble (by tbird [KY]) Jul 10, 2018 5:16 PM
       Hired Trouble (by cjo'h [CT]) Jul 10, 2018 5:22 PM
       Hired Trouble (by cjo'h [CT]) Jul 10, 2018 5:30 PM
       Hired Trouble (by AL [NC]) Jul 10, 2018 5:34 PM
       Hired Trouble (by cjo'h [CT]) Jul 10, 2018 5:39 PM
       Hired Trouble (by Hammer [TN]) Jul 10, 2018 6:11 PM
       Hired Trouble (by Landlord ofthe Flies [TX]) Jul 10, 2018 6:33 PM
       Hired Trouble (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Jul 10, 2018 11:25 PM
       Hired Trouble (by Britt [NC]) Jul 11, 2018 2:04 AM
       Hired Trouble (by MC [PA]) Jul 11, 2018 3:11 AM
       Hired Trouble (by Sparky [PA]) Jul 11, 2018 3:21 AM
       Hired Trouble (by Hammer [TN]) Jul 11, 2018 5:02 AM
       Hired Trouble (by Nicole [PA]) Jul 11, 2018 10:06 AM
       Hired Trouble (by Chris [CT]) Jul 11, 2018 1:30 PM
       Hired Trouble (by fred [CA]) Jul 11, 2018 3:49 PM
       Hired Trouble (by Nicole [PA]) Jul 11, 2018 4:21 PM
       Hired Trouble (by small potatoes [NY]) Jul 11, 2018 9:14 PM

Hired Trouble (by Chris [VA]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2018 4:19 PM

So we hired a brick mason to repair tenant damage on brick porches, after getting three quotes and getting good reviews on the one we selected.

He was starting the work today and we haven't had a chance to check the work yet, which is probably going along fine. We gave him a deposit for materials and such, because we know where he lives and has lived all his life, and several of our friends know him pretty well. He's been married for 30 years and has four grown children - is a family man. In other words, he's not a criminal by any means, or the kind of person that will ever leave his hometown.

BUT, we're completely annoyed now about receiving a text asking for money before the work is complete - just annoyingly immature and unprofessional. "Hello .... im gonna finish the side porch but im not gonna be able to get to the front until in the morning. I was wondering if it would be possible to get half the money today because i have a bill i need to pay tonight, and the other half after i wash everything on fri. If you can call me when you get off that would be great, thanks"

And now I see I have four missed calls from him on the phone number he has for us.

Several years ago we parted ways with another very talented craftsman over similar (but different) issues - just couldn't deal with him. He was rebuilding a deck at a Cape Cod and just wouldn't show up for days, while the tenants living there were not able to use that door. It took him more than twice as long as it should have to finish the job. The workmanship was great, but dealing with him was not. (Now we put completion dates in our contracts.)

Now we have to deal with another hired guy and it's just irritating. I'll have to tell him that our company policy doesn't allow payment before the work is complete. Just venting. --71.246.xxx.xx

Hired Trouble (by DJ [VA]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2018 4:49 PM

Yup! I bet he's a life-long tenant, too. Doesn't handle money well. I've had them too. Have to learn to say NO.

But I admit, I do now plan to pay a certain painter daily or part way through a bigger project. Only because I know her now, she does excellent work at a fair price, always completes the job - quickly and cleanly. --68.10.xxx.x

Hired Trouble (by tbird [KY]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2018 5:16 PM

I thought I was the only one this bugged the p-- out of...

I've had cleaning ladies and handymen both who, on very small jobs, request money mid-way.

Only way to avoid I know is in writing, up front about exactly what gets paid when...and never being on the wrong side of the money.

No money held back, no leverage. --98.93.xx.xxx

Hired Trouble (by cjo'h [CT]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2018 5:22 PM

Chris,don't know what you should tell him,but this is for your information,Was contractor for close to 70 years doing room additions,kitchens and new houses.A five dollar bill was all we needed to clinch the contract,then whatever was in the contract,was what we went by,money was never an issue until the job was done.Our suppliers never needed money until the job was finished ,so we never needed much either...........charlie.......................of course petrol was only 12cents a litre --174.199.x.xxx

Hired Trouble (by cjo'h [CT]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2018 5:30 PM

of course we didn't fool around,Building a deck,no matter how big,was usually only a day and a half at the most.most room additions about a week..........so nothing was tied up too long......charlie................................. --174.199.x.xxx

Hired Trouble (by AL [NC]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2018 5:34 PM

Hi Chris, contractors are like children. This happened to me an I stood firm. Now, the contractor won't work with me. Handymen in this booming economy are hard to come by. It's that question of if you want to be right or rich? Because of my situation, I would pay him. Could you ask for some non monetary collateral from him to ensure he will finish the job?

Enjoying our time share THANKS and good luck! --24.179.xx.xx

Hired Trouble (by cjo'h [CT]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2018 5:39 PM

Al,enjoy your time share,they're almost like Chris's mason ,money , money ,money................charlie....................................... --174.199.x.xxx

Hired Trouble (by Hammer [TN]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2018 6:11 PM

I used to have good results with the following.

I am looking to develop relationships with professional craftsmen. I need a quality job done on time, as promised, and if a problem comes up that might change the scope of the job, call me to work out a solution.

I don't pay for partial or shoddy work, I don't give big advances/deposits. I WILL meet you to walk through the job when you are finished and pay you on the spot in full. IF you need cash, I can do that too with a days notice. No 30-60-90 days waiting for your money crap.

I need good work done on time and on budget and will pay cash. Is that something you can live with?

Then have them write up a quote and we both sign it.

Lately, they are always needing money fast, but don't want to work 2-3 days in a row to get paid in full. I can't figure it out. --137.119.xxx.xxx

Hired Trouble (by Landlord ofthe Flies [TX]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2018 6:33 PM

Tell him you need to inspect work first and can't get there until tomorrow afternoon. If the job is good, pay him otherwise he might walk off. They do need to be treated like children. However, when they throw a tantrum, they can leave you in a situation of unfinished work. --108.69.xxx.xxx

Hired Trouble (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Posted on: Jul 10, 2018 11:25 PM


Vent on baby!

Me? I am having a tough time finding workers. Even the folks who reply to my CL ads don't call back or don't show up. Right now I'm 1 for 8 and he has not started yet.

I'd "work with him" so MY work gets done. I'll pay for what is complete but be sure to hold back a big enough chunk that he'll return. Maybe pay for each porch, one at a time.

But remember, you gave him money up front already! I won't do that. I'll pay for materials and he can pick them up. No need for money to him. As you can see he does not have any financial margin.

All the comments about family man, local, etc mean nothing in regards to work ethic and financial stability.

I also sense drug money needed. The last several laborers that begged for partial payments were later exposed for drug involvement. 2 are in jail right now for dealing. They both checked out fine with court records before hiring.

BRAD --68.50.xxx.xxx

Hired Trouble (by Britt [NC]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2018 2:04 AM

I'm with Brad. Money probably not going to a bill. --99.182.xx.xxx

Hired Trouble (by MC [PA]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2018 3:11 AM

No go until the work is done. SO paid a contractor for various things(is to do this little job,then that one..)-more than what the original deal was(no written contract). Knew they get screwed-told me and I have never thrown it back in their face. SO knew better-even after I did a check on the contractor and found out he was shady.. --73.230.xx.xx

Hired Trouble (by Sparky [PA]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2018 3:21 AM

I guess you should have established that you would pay him for the work upon completion prior to having him start. Maybe you could pay him 1/2 at the end of the day if you inspect and find that the work is satisfactorily 1/2 done. Perhaps he is concerned about completing the job for people he doesn't know because he has been stiffed in the past. --100.6.xx.xxx

Hired Trouble (by Hammer [TN]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2018 5:02 AM

Locally contractors are playing the merry go round game.

Book the business, get a deposit and start work. Then disappear until you call and yell. Send a couple guys by to work a couple hours then disappear again. Repeat until you threaten to sue or have them arrested for scamming you. Finally send the whole crew over to work a day and string you along more, or finish the job.

They THINK they cant/shouldn't turn down business so they take on more than they can handle and try to show up just enough to appease you. In reality, they are in a cash pinch and using the new business deposits to finish old jobs. Eventually they crash and burn when they can't cover materials and their workers leave for lack of getting paid. --137.119.xxx.xxx

Hired Trouble (by Nicole [PA]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2018 10:06 AM

having a lot of work done at my mother's house. New HVAC system through a well established (3 generation family-owned) business - they needed 25% down. Taking out a huge tree from the back yard from, again, a well established, long term local contractor ... price is $3200 - wanted $500 down. --72.70.xxx.xx

Hired Trouble (by Chris [CT]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2018 1:30 PM

Common a lot of the guys are hand to mouth. My trimmer who I have used for a decade is like this. If a trim job is $5k a lot of time I'll pay him as the job goes along, $500 here $1k here than the balance at the end.

They are workers not bankers, most contractors live hand to mouth and are terrible with their money.

If half of the work was done I would have paid him. --24.45.xxx.xxx

Hired Trouble (by fred [CA]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2018 3:49 PM

If your mason is looking for a progressive payment (a payment after a certain stage) - there is nothing wrong with that, as long as you don't let him jump in front of you.

you stated that he is this and that, now we know that he is broke and needs the job.

Pay him a little and watch him come back to complete the job on time. --99.59.x.xxx

Hired Trouble (by Nicole [PA]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2018 4:21 PM

also forgot replacing bay window from WindowWorld. $3800 with 1/2 down.

Also, I asked each of them about signing a contract I wrote up (I hadn't just thought I'd test the waters) and all three said "sign ours or we won't do the work" --72.70.xxx.xx

Hired Trouble (by small potatoes [NY]) Posted on: Jul 11, 2018 9:14 PM

if the mason has workers then he probably needs to meet payroll. Not that that is necessarily your headache, but if you want to develop a relationship w/ his company then it doesn't hurt to be 'considerate'. I would be PO's about the texts for payment. Does sound like drugs if it is not payday related.

I find smaller contractors do not like to have anything specific in writing. However if you want something done a certain way then put it in writing. I used to write specs/ terms on capital contracts and if I try that w/ contractors they wouldn't take the work. I put my foot down at materials before job only (if I'm not buying) and work out the stages of completion and the percentages for each. Be mindful to hold enough back so that they want to FINISH the job.

Don't know what it might be about masons, but they seem to have good reputations and do so, so work. Like was mentioned in previous post, never take your eye off of contractors and trust that it will get done properly. Now all you have to do is know what properly is. Thing is contractors age good a 'explaining' things and spin a convincing tale, that sounds good at the time. --24.194.xx.xx

Subject: RE: Hired Trouble
Your Name:
Your State:

Hired Trouble
Would you like to be notified via email when somebody replies to this thread?
If so, you must include your valid email address here. Do not add your address more than once per thread/subject. By entering your email address here, you agree to receive notification from Mrlandlord.com every time anyone replies to "this" thread. You will receive response notifications for up to one week following the original post. Your email address will not be visible to readers.
Email Address: