“Remodeling Nightmares”: Contractors That “Walk Away” From Home Remodeling Jobs Can Leave Thousands Of Dollars In Unpaid Subcontractor Work And Materials Owed To Homeowner

30 08 2010

Instead of living in their dream home, the Wrays are living a remodeling nightmare. They say they are owed thousands of dollars in work and materials by a contractor who has walked away. One unpaid subcontractor has filed a lien on their property, and others are threatening to do the same.

Unfinished work by contractors can jeopardize the safety and livability of the home. Thousands can be spent correcting poor workmanship.

When Peter Wray returned home one day this past December, he noticed something odd in the addition being built onto his Northwest Side home.  All the new windows had been installed. Except two.

The remodeler told him not to worry; the windows were on back order.

Now, in hindsight, Peter Wray and his wife, Teresa, realize the missing windows were a red flag that something was going wrong.

Today, a year after the Wrays started the remodeling, the bathroom has no fixtures, the living room and master bedroom suite are without flooring, two second-floor doors lead to thin air, and water pipes poke randomly out of the floor in the laundry room.

The $126,000 two-story addition that was designed to transform the home is, for the most part, unusable. Even formerly livable parts of the house, such as the walkout lower level, have been rendered useless by the half-finished addition.

“It’s like living in a trailer, with a kitchen, hallway, bathroom and bedroom,” said Wray, communications director with the American Ceramic Society.

For more:  http://www.dispatch.com/live/content/home_garden/stories/2010/08/29/from-dream-to-nightmare.html?sid=101