Is your contractor this irresponsible?
I'm sorry I need to vent a little bit. I feel like I've hired the most childish and irresponsible contractor in the Western US! If anybody is considering hiring a contractor in the San Francisco Bay Area, contact me and I'll tell you who to *avoid*!
We broke ground on a to-the-studs remodel in May 2009. We were supposed to be done in May 2010. Then July 2010. Then Thanksgiving 2010. Then Christmas, 2010. Then New Years, 2011. Now its almost Feb and we're still not done. In that time, our contractor has:
- Blamed tile issues on our "defective" tiles that we bought.
(I don't think so. We have 3 different kinds of tiles from Ann Sacks, 1 kind from Heath Tile, and 2 kinds from Kick *ss Glass. I highly doubt that *all* this tile we bought is defective)
- Charged us for *thinset* because the contract considered tiles as owner-supplied-contractor-install --- and he considers *thinset* as tile!
- Accused us of being cheap for not agreeing to pay his flooring sub more money --- when his flooring sub made bidding mistakes in a fixed price bid!
- Accused us of being cheap for not agreeing to pay his steel sub more money --- when his steel sub made bidding mistakes in a fixed price bid!
- Accused our cabinet makers of making crap products, when confronted with kitchen cab installation issues (I don't think so - the cabs were from Henrybuilt. Its nice stuff)
- Charged us a 5K change order for installing the kitchen cabs because HB's cabs are "more involved than normal cabs." (I was dumb. I paid it thinking it would make contractor more pliable. I was completely wrong).
- Installed skylights *backwards* (so that rain would roll right into them when opened) and then tried to argue against the architects on that one!
- Set fire to the basement floor from welding sparks --- and then blamed *us* because "we rushed them to work on a Saturday" (um, you were late by 6 months already at this point)
- Accused me of being completely unreasonable for expecting his counter sub to cut a zero-reveal cutout on an undermount sink because its "too precise" (Um, if you just used the template included with the sink, you would be able do to this. Oh wait, you mean you never opened the box the sink came with?)
- Gets upset when we pay him by a check in the mail, and expects us to leave a check for him at the jobsite (fat chance. you guys left the doors unlocked so many times that there was a break-in that resulted in many tools being stolen! and you expect me to leave you a check at the job site?)
- So I decided to be nice and suck-it-in and drop by in the morning and give him the check on the way to work --- except that he was late to the jobsite by half an hour, so I left for work and dropped the check off in the mail --- and he got upset at me for not waiting for him! Not a single apology!
- Consistently has his spouse bad-mouth me to the subs that I've hired to fix the shoddy work that his own crew has done. (My subs call me and beg me to please get my GC's spouse to stop calling them!)
- And now the latest thing - he's totally stopped answering his phone. Every single piece of communication with him is via email now. And you know what the best part is? I'm subsidizing this! Its my DSL line that I'm paying for that he's using for his emails!
Thanks for listening. I'm so frustrated with this GC - I've been *this* close to firing him about 10 times by now. I'm frustrated that he never ever takes responsibility and he never takes his lumps like a man. There's always someone else to blame. He blames his subs, he blames his workers, he blames me, he blames the products, he blames his spouse (!!), he blames me (again), and he blames the architect. The only person who never shares in any blame is himself.
The good part is that we're almost done - and scheduled to get to the punchlist in a week.
This was our first experience building a house and it has been completely draining. I don't know how some of you do multiple houses! This relationship is exactly like a horribly-bad-marriage.