• Report: #301675

Complaint Review: Riddle Builders

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  • Submitted: Sat, January 19, 2008
  • Updated: Tue, December 02, 2008

  • Reported By:Delhi Louisiana
Riddle Builders
505 North 17th St. Monroe, Louisiana U.S.A.

Riddle Builders, Robert Riddle false records, billed more than owed, lied about services performed, incompetence throughout job, gave self profit on work not done Monroe Louisiana

*Consumer Comment: insulation

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Who's Lauren????

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Please consider the following

*Author of original report: Riddle Builders made restitution to insurance co for services not performed; technically above board legally

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1. We were pressured into using this contractor under false pretenses, including that the job would be done more quickly than other contractors could do it if he were hired. When the job got close to being finished, he conveniently "forgot" all of the promises that he made before we signed the contract.

2. Was told before signing contract that payment arrangements would be made to pay out the amount do "if any." Before the job was finished, he demanded payment in full in an amount more than what we had previously agreed upon.

3. Took the contractor more than 5 months to perform a small job when we were originally led to believe it would take 2 at the most, and the job is still not complete.

4. Was advised that additional work needed to be done at extra expense to us but were not provided with an estimate beforehand. Was told that it "wouldn't be much." Later found out that the work had already been done in the previous year. Of course, the bill that "wouldn't be much" was $450.00. Was very belligerent when I told him that I considered that to be more than "not very much."

5. The work mentioned above had to be redone 3 times because of faulty work and because cheaper materials than what we were billed for were installed. Was told the second time that the work had been redone but it had not. Trash and debris, including roof tacks, were left all over the yard, but were eventually picked up by the carpenters (only because the carpenters were nice - the contractor hadn't told them to pick it up).

6. Contractor called tree service and when the tree service failed to show up, I made the arrangements with another tree service to come out and dealt with the owner in the absence of the contractor. Contractor still billed $350 fee in with the bill from the tree service even though he had nothing to do with it. Told me that it was "standard."

7. Left me to handle calling and setting up electrical service and did not get involved in that portion. Electrician was very curious as to why I was left to manage the job instead of the contractor.

8. Carpet and carpet liner was in the room when the tree fell but the contractor overlooked it. I pulled it up and rolled it up myself, but was charged for "carpet removal." Had to ask contractor to call the insurance company in front of me to make sure they knew to reimburse me for it.

9. Instructed workers to put up the walls of the room without any insulation. When asked why they weren't replacing insulation they commented that they thought they should but they were instructed not to. When I checked the estimate, we were being billed for insulation that the contractor did not instruct his workers to install.

10. We were also billed for blown in insulation in the ceiling over the room. However, when we checked the attick after noticing, on a cold day, that there was no frost over that part of the house, that there was no insulation in that part of the attick.

11. Took 3 months to receive initial estimate even though asked for one repeatedly. Did not receive final estimate until work was almost done.

12. Left materials sitting in the mud and rain for weeks at a time while no work was done to house. Repeated phone calls went unanswered. When he finally did return calls, he made promises about finish times that he did not keep.

13. Gave no direction to carpenters, who cut vents at odd angles, knocked out windows that didn't need to be removed, and tore up parts of the floor.

14. Failed to notice that the tree had cracked large blocks of our walkway and that it had torn up the floor. I had to do all of the legwork in trying to get the insurance company to cover the expense of repair. Insurance company curious as to why contractor was not the one making the request.

15. Kept losing my punchcard and forgetting to send workers to complete requests. Made further promises about timelines that he continually broke.

16. Submitted wrong windows to insurance company and by the time that we (not he) realized his mistake it was too late for the insurance company to make up the difference between what they owed us and what he submitted because it had already gone through. We went around and around with the insurance company (they were great about it) trying to correct his mistake while he cooled his heels and didn't try to help or even apologize for the mistake that cost us almost $1,200. Eventually the insurance company came out and met us to try to find other ways to make up for the mistake. The contractor failed to show up for the meeting. Our insurance company was surprised that the contractor was not handling the issue since he caused it. He also messed up the order for the window screens.

17. The windows took weeks to arrive and when they did they sat under the carport for several additional weeks while the work that was supposed to be finished before the windows arrived. When they installed the windows there were parts missing and we are still waiting for the contractor to order and install the missing parts.

18. When the insurance adjuster came out to try to correct the contractor's mistake, he found several very obvious items that the contractor had overlooked; two were potential safety hazards.

19. Toward the end of the job, the contractor started using phrases like "between a rock and a hard place" and "my hands are tied" to describe the way he had been handling the job.

20. The paint job had to be redone because it was not done correctly.

21. We were billed for multiple items that were not completed or never ordered. When asked about charges, he became belligerent and threatened legal action if we did not pay in full; since then, he has called and left threatening message on my machine. In addition, he refused to honor the previous terms of the agreement.

Lauren
Delhi, Louisiana
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/19/2008 05:18 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Riddle-Builders/Monroe-Louisiana-71201/Riddle-Builders-Robert-Riddle-false-records-billed-more-than-owed-lied-about-services-p-301675. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author 2Consumer 2Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

insulation

AUTHOR: Alphaad - ()

How does one "omit" insulation ? insulation isn't one of those things that can be easily looked over. You also mention that this job was an "insurance" job as though that is some sort of excuse for the substandard workmanship. 

 

Why do contractors accept insurance jobs knowing fully well they will have to cut corners in order to make the profit they desire ? this is the reason that insurance companies continue to settle claims for amounts much less than the actual loss. 

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#2 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Who's Lauren????

AUTHOR: Robert Riddle - (U.S.A.)

We never had a customer named Lauren from Delhi. We've done 4 very successful jobs in Delhi. The first from a referral from Monroe, the latter 3 were subsequent referrals from the former Delhi jobs. How ironic that our success in the Delhi area is due to our quality work for customers whom I can provide the names of for anyone wanting to contact us.
Lauren-- who are you?
Robert Riddle
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#3 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Please consider the following

AUTHOR: Robert Riddle - (U.S.A.)

Being in business for 21 years, and now performing an average of 60-80 jobs a year, I certainly would not deny that there have been jobs that had their share of troubles. Though we always correct problems, often going beyond our obligations in hopes of avoiding negative advertising, I'd be stating an obvious lie if I said there were not a few customers whose job may have warrantied a response as this. Ironically this is not one of them. It took a while for me to figure it out, because the job was in Monroe, not Delhi. Also ironic is our recent reputation in the Delhi area. After performing our first major remodel in this area less than a year ago, we have already been referred twice among a genre of customers who equally can afford very high end work.

After much debate as to whether to respond at all, and if so, how detailed, I decided to hit important things. I should mention what I feel is important to a potential customer reading this, and realize that regardless of my response, there will always be a seed of doubt because of these comments.

First I ask any prospect to contact our office for a long list of referrals from customers we performed the type work you are desiring, if we do perform it.

Do this after calling any material supplier or vendor in this area, or our bank (Bancorpsouth) for an idea of our credit or financial standing. Check legals to find we have NEVER been sued by a customer, vendor or subcontractor. Phone the local Home Builders Association to find our involvement in the improvement of my industry for 16 years includes two terms as president and many times chairing committees and, after being a board member for 12 years am now a "Life" board member. My input is respectable enough to have been asked to serve the State Board for approximately 10 years. (I was asked to consider running for State president, but opted out due to time requirements.) I have other types of community involvement, but mostly stress our reputation among this area's customers. Feedback from potential customers often tells me that the word honest is repeated when they are researching our history.

Rather than respond to all items I offer the following:
1.) It was an insurance job and we were recommended, not forced, by a very prominent insurance company for which we have been a "preferred provider" for more than 6 years. Ours is the only original company on the program. Also, the Customer told me their relatives suggested a cousin, but chose us due to neighbors having referred us.

2.) This job did not go perfectly, yet any problems were responded to immediately. One example: when the omission of insulation (over a 10 x 14 room) was brought to our attention, the insulation was installed before the end of the same day.

2.a)When the porch deck paint (item #20?) did not dry properly, we proactively (we brought attention of it to the customer) responded by informing our painter. It was first dried by dehumidification, prepped and recoated. We also (with out complaint from the Owner) demanded our painter apply another coat to the exterior. I'm not sure they ever knew it received more coats than the estimate allowed for.

2.b) Item # 6- I opted to use the other tree service because the first could not get to it until Monday (we were called on a Saturday) the one we did use was approved by me (knowing they were fully insured) and, as important, paid over $3,000.00 by my company the following week (the insurance company allows us a markup) We also met with them prior to discuss concerns about removal, payment, etc.
(Same response to item #7 -electrician-- they got there faster, were reputable, and paid by my company)

2.c.) ref # 4. The only additional work was to replace the shoddy existing chimney flashing for which a quote was provided (and approved) and that amount, plus some still has not been paid in full as of Feb. 11, 2008. The job was accpeted by signature in mid December. This "Authorization to Pay" is required by the insurance company before we are paid a dime and states that they are satisfied, as well as a follow up call for verification of satisfaction.

2.d.) ref #16. The original window estimate was for "like kind and quality" which is required by the insurance company. The windows were selected by the Owner, and although being a major upgrade, full cost was covered and yet Owner complained to adjustor that they should have covered cost of another more expensive window - not to have it installed, but to get additional funds.

ref #7 These windows took 7 weeks to arrive (the supplier DID tell us to anticipate 6 weeks) during which time we could do very little work. We arrived back on the job within 3 days of arrival to install them. The parts missing were reordered and subsequently wrong parts sent.

2.e.) ref #14. The walk was not noticed immediately due to focusing on rebuilding the house. When it was, the adjustor was notified, stated he would cover the cost, but we opted not to repair it until the majority of the "traffic" over it was complete. The floor items mentioned were primarily "rot" and the adjustor debated whether to cover it or not, was not obligated to cover it but did. We immediately repaired it, but only after being authorized.

I could go on, and would be glad to verbally discuss any other items mentioned. With regards to "demand for payment" I feel this may be the most important issue, since that may be what prompted a response from a customer I deemed to be satisfied after a few resolved problems. The only "arrangements" (ref #2) made for payment of deductible was that my offer for "downgrades" and compensate the difference (i.e.: a lesser expensive flooring) to help, but have NEVER offered to "waive" the deductible. This ($1,800.00) and the cost of the flashing, which they knew both would be due at the end of the job have still not been paid fully. We were promised full payment after they received a bonus on January 6th.

None of the amount due was paid until weeks later after I did threatened legal means, and am still considering, should I not recieve the remaining $600.00.

In summary- I feel that my immediate responses to any complaints have gone unnoticed, and the complaints are exaggerated, misstated, or made up. It is also possible that the adjustor's name could be given (for his opinion) should I receive a call from any prospect. This would have to be approved by him.

I do hope that anyone reading this would consider that this website does no research into complaints and does not even notify the recipient of a bad review like other venues for complaints. We came upon this strictly by accident.

We thank you for considering Riddle Builders, Inc.
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#4 Author of original report

Riddle Builders made restitution to insurance co for services not performed; technically above board legally

AUTHOR: person041 - (U.S.A.)

Riddle Builders has since written a check back to the insurance company for services / items on the bill that were not performed. That means that technically they are now above board legally. They are still guilty of general incompetence and a severe case of memory loss when it comes to prior agreements.

I wouldn't recommend this company to my worst enemy, but I can't say that they did anything "technically" illegal.
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