Ripoff Report Needs Your Help!
Report: #267704

Complaint Review: Ann Arbor Pool Builders Phoenix Associates Land Syndicate - Ann Arbor Michigan

  • Submitted:
  • Updated:
  • Reported By: Ann Arbor Michigan
  • Author Confirmed What's this?
  • Why?
  • Ann Arbor Pool Builders Phoenix Associates Land Syndicate 522 N. Maple Rd. Ann Arbor, Michigan U.S.A.

Ann Arbor Pool Builders Phoenix Associates Land Syndicate Local guys hobbled by shady out-of-state syndicate. Project management disaster. Ann Arbor Michigan

*Consumer Comment: also unhappy

*UPDATE Employee: Rebuttal

*Author of original report: UPDATE: Oct. 30, 2007 - AA Pools still causing us pain.

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

Is this
Report about YOU
listed on other sites?
Those sites steal
Ripoff Report's
We can get those
removed for you!
Find out more here.
How to fix
Ripoff Report
If your business is
willing to make a
commitment to
customer satisfaction
Click here now..

Ann Arbor Pool Builders - Warning

Are you thinking about contracting with Ann Arbor Pool Builders to build your swimming pool? Are you thinking about working with Phoenix Associates Land Syndicate?

Better read our story first.

Timeline and Overview
In October 2006, we signed a contract with Ann Arbor Pools (AAP) to build a gunite pool in our backyard. The contract clearly stated the price and specifications for the pool, but the AAP representative was unwilling to commit to a completion date in writing. We verbally agreed with the AAP rep that the target date for completion of the project would be Memorial Day (June 28) 2007. The contract required about 50% of the purchase price paid before work began, then about 45% paid when the concrete shell of the pool was completed. About 5% was due upon completion.

The excavation work and concrete shell were completed in 4Q 2006. AAP received our payments as required by the contract.

In the Spring of 2007, work began to complete the project. Progress was very slow. Memorial Day 2007 passed with the project incomplete. According to AAP, the major factors delaying the work on our pool were the weather (it was a rainy Spring) and the relatively high water table in our backyard (pumps were used to keep the pool interior as dry as possible).

In late-June 2007, a flurry of activity completed the Marcite (lining cement) and concrete deck around the pool. We were swiming by July 1, 2007. The heater went in mid-July 2007. For safety reasons, we had to fill in deep, open trenches left by AAP.

As of Aug. 15, 2007, AAP has not done the final grade and they are trying to squeeze us for extra cash because they underestimated the fence costs. They want us to make up the difference ($1000) based on their estimate of 120 feet of fence. The blue print clearly states 139 feet of fence. The actual amount of fence needed is 142 feet. We have not yet reached an agreement with AAP on this matter.

Issues with Ann Arbor Pool Builders
Phoenix Associates Land Syndicate

Management Issues
In early April 2007, there was no work being done on our pool project. We contacted AAP about the project schedule, and learned that oversight for much of their work had passed to another company called
Phoenix Associates Land Syndicate based in Louisiana. This was a surpise since at no time prior to our inquiries in April 2007 had AAP ever mentioned that their business was connected with another management company.

A few observations about the Phoenix Associates Land Syndicate (Phoenix) representative:

- He apparently spends much time traveling between work sites and offices in several states.
- He was difficult to contact when we had questions.
- He was generally evasive about the work schedule and would not provide a completion date.
- By late June, he had become arrogant and rude when pressed for information about the project progress.
- He was of dismissive of promises made by the AAP rep who originally signed the contract.

Speaking with the local subcontractors working on the project, we learned that several delays to the project were caused by Phoenix:

- Payments were not released on time.
- Inspection visits and interior work were not coordinated with the homeowner.
- Required materials not delivered to the site on time.

In June 2007, AAP / Phoenix had four other pool projects in progress in addition to ours. It is very likely that this volume of business was simply too much for AAP / Phoenix to complete according to reasonable schedules.

Contract Issues
At contract initiation, we were not informed that AAP had a management or partnership agreement with Phoenix. We consider this very material information, and we would not have signed the contract if we had known this fact.

At contract initiation, we were promised by the AAP representative that the pool project would be completed by Memorial Day 2007. An oral contract is as binding as a written contract. AAP, with many years in the pool building business, was well aware of their capacity to complete our pool project in the specified timeframe. A swimming pool is only useful for a few months during the Summer. If we had known that the Memorial Day completion date was impossible and that it would be mid-Summer before the project was done, we would not have signed the contract.

Final Evaluation

When evaluating the success of any project, four interrelated factors that must be considered. We will address each of them for our pool building project with AAP/ Phoenix.

Was the work required to construct the pool finished? NO as of Aug. 15, 2007.

Was the pool constructed according to the contract specifications and did it meet necessary inspections? YES
The local subcontractors did excellent work. The pride of craftmanship that AAP has shown for many years was evident.

Was the work done using the given budget? NO They failed to correctly estimate the fence costs. As of Aug.15, the matter is unresolved.

Was the project completed on time? NO
The actual completion date was more than 30 days later than the promised completion date. Since the project was highly time sensitive, the late completion is considered a major failure to deliver.

Would we recommend Ann Arbor Pool Builders? No, we would not recommend them. Ann Arbor Pool Builders was a local, family-owned business known for their quality workmanship and customer service. Their involvement with Phoenix Associates Land Syndicate has been a disaster.

- Phoenix project manager was unable (or unwilling) to communicate the project schedule to a customer.
- AAP / Phoenix held a customer's money for six months without completing the work on time.
- Key facts witheld from the customer at the contract initation.
- Rude and arrogant behavior from the Phoenix representative.

AAP / Phoenix need to remember the two Golden Rules of business:

1. The Customer is always right.
2. If the Customer isn't right, see Rule #1.

Ann Arbor, Michigan

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 08/15/2007 11:37 AM and is a permanent record located here: 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. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

Search for additional reports

If you would like to see more Rip-off Reports on this company/individual, search here:

Report & Rebuttal
Respond to this report!
What's this?
Also a victim?
What's this?
Repair Your Reputation!
What's this?

Updates & Rebuttals


#3 Consumer Comment

also unhappy

AUTHOR: Unhappy Also - (U.S.A.)

POSTED: Monday, June 23, 2008

This report was like reading my own story. Actually everyone I've sent this link to thinks its about my pool. I actually thought someone had posted most of our problems. How sad our stories are about the same.

Short version of a long story All I wanted was a Caribbean looking pool. What I didn't want was a baby blue pool guess what I got? Yep, a baby blue pool.

Our saga began in Feb 06 & finally done in Aug 06. Not too bad from the previous post. It was promised to be completed in April 06. May came & went. June came & went. July came & went. Fun thing to have your back yard tore up all summer waiting for a pool to get done. It wasn't until I threatened to contact our attorneys did they get it done. Every contractor that came to my home asked me to pay them directly because ann arbor pools wasn't paying them. I was threaded that part of the equipment was going to be pulled out!

They got additional $14,000 from me & wanted over $14,000 more, which I told them they should have paid me because their dropping the ball on so many things.
2 years later my tile is falling off, low & behold no one will return my call hummm
Maybe Dennis should get out of the business because I won't recommend him. On the other hand the brothers of Dennis were great, Bud & I believe the guys name was Jim (sorry I'm trying to forget). They were very responsive to my complaints & concerns.

Bottom line for us even though our pool is beautiful & relaxing ,there is still a cloud over shadowing it because of the poor treatment from ann arbor pools.

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#2 UPDATE Employee


AUTHOR: Dsa2pb - (U.S.A.)

POSTED: Tuesday, November 13, 2007

1. It is not true that we require 50% down. Our contract state 20% down & 30 % after excavation.
2. The timeline looks correct. The job was a swamp in the spring.The Pool was not finished by Memorial day as planned. There was alot of pumping and extra visits to try to dry out the pool and area to complete the job.
3.The Homeowners filled in the trench after the building department gas line inspection on the weekend so they could work on their landscaping. they did not inform us and we showed up to fill it in. the gas line contractor was not very easy to work with. they refused to use the first trench or did a second so we hand dug a second trench for them and it waited on their inspection.
4. The Pool was moved further from the house with the homeowners approval and that made more fence and concrete needed to finish. We were able to get the concrete contractor to "Eat" the extra concrete but not the fence company.the homeowner would not approve the change order. The home owner went directly to the fence contractor and contracted them to install the fence. Less our O&P. That made it more affordable to the Homeowner. We approved that. and aggreed to "Eat" our O&P. We credited the homeowner for the cost of the fence so it is incorrect to say they paid for the fence twice.
5. The homeowners were told by me when we sold the job that Phoenix purchased the company in 2004.
6. I can not speek for the corporate manager that was here in response to those claims. But I can tell you he is no longer with the company.
7. Payments, Inspections & deliverys were not done as planned.
8. The cost overuns are for the sitework and dewatering. they were set up as estimates because we did not know how bad the water was going to be and it was the worst one I have seen in 30 years. Plus they added sitework of excavating approx. 20 2' diameter tree stumps and excavating a pit to bury them.
9. We approved removal of the winter cover and caulking from our contract and credited them the amounts because the said they have no money to complete this with the overuns.they purchase a cheep cover online.
10. We acually have at least 25 projects going at any given time. And things have not gone smooth this year.
11.We did intend to set a hopefull completion date of Memorial Day, and normaly that works out fine. but as stated by the homeoner we would not make it firm because of things like the project turning into a swamp and making it imposible to complete. But the project did take longer than it should have.
12.We are glad that the project is the quality that we want to have.
13. I do not know what was highly sensitive about the project completion. Normaly it would be graduation partys but the only thing I was told is that they are into Holloween and that day was important not to have anyone there and have it safe.
14. We try to agree the customer is always right even if they are wrong, but its hard to do.
15. The homeowners on this project have been great to work with and mostly understanding and we are thankfull for that. We could have done things better and wish we had. Some times our hands are tied.
16.This report will not help matters any it will make people angry and escalate this. I will try to keep this from escalating into us liening the job because we have not been paid completly.
17. I know Pfizzer is really treating their people bad by shutting down in town and these people now have to sell their house and move after building everything the way they want it. And this was their only summer to use the new pool and it was not completed. Makes us feel bad also.

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#1 Author of original report

UPDATE: Oct. 30, 2007 - AA Pools still causing us pain.

AUTHOR: Pfizzer2000 - (U.S.A.)

POSTED: Wednesday, October 31, 2007

In late August, we discovered that the fence contractor was unwilling to build our fence since AAP had not paid them for work done on other projects. So, we convinced AAP to let us pay the fence contractor directly and deduct the cost from the final budget. The pool project passed its final inspection in October 2007, about 1 year after we signed the contract with AAP.

Also in October 2007 we received a lien notice from the concrete contractor. AAP had not paid them. We immediately contacted the electric and plumbing contractors. As of Oct. 30, 2007, AAP had not been paid them either.

We are currently working with AAP to get them to pay the contractors with the money we gave AAP almost a year ago. We will be contacting the Michigan Construction Lien Fund.

Review of the final project balance sheet shows large cost overruns (+200%) on several allowance items. We also bought the winter cover ourselves and removed the deck-coping caulk to help adjust the balance we owe AAP. We hope to come to a final amount owed to AAP by mid November 2007.

Also, the original Phoenix rep mentioned has left our project. A new rep has been named.

Was the work required to construct the pool finished? YES, but only after we paid TWICE to have the fence done.

Was the work done using the given budget? NO The allowances were in many cases far below actual costs. AAP should have provided better initial estimates and alerted us that these costs were going above the budgeted amount .

We would NOT recommend Ann Arbor Pools.

Respond to this report!
What's this?
Featured Reports

Advertisers above have met our
strict standards for business conduct.

What do hackers,
questionable attorneys and
fake court orders have in common?
...Dishonest Reputation Management Investigates Reputation Repair
Free speech rights compromised

Segment Now