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Report: #628204

Complaint Review: Brown Mountain Lodge (BML) - Mooresville North Carolina

  • Submitted: Sun, August 01, 2010
  • Updated: Wed, August 11, 2010
  • Reported By: FAMILY FROM FLORIDA — Palm Coast Florida U.S.A.
  • Brown Mountain Lodge (BML)
    215 Castaway Trail, Mooresville, NC 28117
    Mooresville, North Carolina
    United States of America

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We have just returned from a vacation nightmare at BROWN MOUNTAIN LODGE, in NC. When we arrived, having driven 9 hours, to this "home" we thought it was an abandoned home and that we were in the wrong place!  

There was LARGE cracks and uneven pathways to the front door where we found a filthy door and LARGE web covered bushes, on entering this house we were hit with the most putrid smell - it can only be described as something between rotting wood, house-a-tosis, and cheap perfume.

When we turned on the lights to look around - we were horrified!!!!!!  Someone had just left the property that day after staying there and there were cobwebs and dust on every available surface - all the appliances were greasy to the touch and the microwave and oven had old food splattered everywhere - I even had to clean the fridge before putting our food in.  The dishwasher has mold around the opening.  There were people's fingerprints on the walls in the kitchen and our skin was crawling!  

Now to the bathrooms - where the plumbing seems to have been an after thought with galvanized pipe on the interior of the shower - rusted and green - not to mention the wasp infestation in the upstairs bathroom (where you will find the washer and dryer!) - there was also MICE & RAT POISON under the pipes in the upstairs toilet.

The air conditioning filter in the main bedroom was black and frozen since the filter appears NEVER to have been changed - and so loud that you cannot hear the TV (volume issue!).

On their website they invite you to "open the blinds to see the view and deer grazing in the meadow"  - This was laughable - there was NO VIEW since all the vegetation is so overgrown and out of control - not to mention the fact that the windows (from the  40's are FILTHY inside and out & again full of cobwebs at every corner.  On further inspection we found ANOTHER MICE & RAT OPEN PELLET TRAY behind a filthy 1970's couch where we also found ticks crawling!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Please bear in mind we were not alone on this vacation - which we booked and looked forward to some 6-8 months prior - we had with us our two daughters and our two dogs which we feel were at risk in the downstairs portion of this DUMP!!!!!!

The outside area which is cleverly photographed (along with the rest of this place) was equally disgusting - there is an old broken refridgerator that has had darts thrown at it and is covered in mold and had rat droppings therein.  The gas grill has to be scrubbed of someone else's food before my husband could cook and only then did we cook on silver foil.

The whole place was damp and dirty - dark and dingy and the overwhelming smell of an old rotting house - seemed not to phase Mr Jeff Shook at all when I called him to complain - he made a VERY WEAK attempt to placate us by suggesting that the next morning he could come out himself and "CLEAN"  we were at great pains to explain to him that this is more than just surface FILTH - this place was indeed a health hazard! 

Mr Shook - weakly responded suggesting that he could send us a $100 coupon for "fine dining"  - I explained that we have children and don't want fine dining - we wanted what we have signed up for ............... I also suggested that he should at least have called this property "RUSTIC" I believe that is realtor speak for "OLD and uncared for".

We paid Mr Jeff Shook $1,465.00 for this "vacation" this is our only time in the year that we get away and have rented numerous properties in North Carolina and Georgia before and this UNDOUBTEDLY IS THE WORST DESCRIPTION OF ANY PROPERTY THAT WE HAVE VACATIONED IN.

MR JEFF AND MRS DEBRA SHOOK are unscrupulous, cold hearted, money grabbing, greedy and unprofessional renters - who do not care for their clients or the condition of the properties that they rent - this is, to us, a clear example of AMERICAN GREED - and we CAUTION all pet friendly renters about this property!!!!!  

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 08/01/2010 02:45 PM 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

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#2 Author of original report


AUTHOR: Also with knowledge! - (U.S.A.)

Mr Shook,

You have all the way through your rebuttal agreed that our complaints were valid - only of course you are going to make it sound less relevant than it was - you are a "businessman" first and a people pleaser - I was going to say second - but that is not even true!

You tried to manipulate me on the telephone by expressing that we must have had an exhausting journey - Sir you are completely without consideration or conscience - I objected to you coming to "clean" personally since it was OUR HOLIDAY - of which we only had six days - and how dare you suggest that we declined your $100 gift certificate - I told you that this was not good enough - if you were that much of a "people pleaser" you would have mailed it anyway and with it a letter of apology would have been waiting for us when we returned home as an act of consideration and good business practice - hence my comment about your character - unscrupulous and greedy!  My point being no card or $100 gift certificate was ever sent to us!

I shall finally end with what YOU KNOW TO BE AN OUTRIGHT LIE - the dog poop 

issue - you and I both know that this is an outrageously UNTRUE and slanderous accusation, which if continued I shall act upon in the form of employing my attorney and escalate this all the way with you - I will be damned if you will LIE such as this and get away with it - believe me Sir you are picking a fight with someone who will uphold their integrity and good name in a way that you clearly can't.

We stripped all the beds and left the place exactly as we had found it - you obviously have no god fearing bones in your body from the way you have handled this entire incident.  We did not even remove the two PACKETS OF RAT POISON visible to us - much as we wanted to!

I will make readers aware of one more detail - your first response when I asked you to provide and full refund so that we may leave immediately and pursue our holiday in North Carolina elsewhere was "absolutely not - there is no way that I would be able to rent it out at this short notice" - very considerate and people pleasing.  

Mr & Mrs Shook we suggest that you take a long hard look at yourselves and your practices - there will be other renters who will feel as we do - if there haven't been already - my daughters are soooo upset about the accusation of dog poop - they want me to call the Today show!   

I remain, an honest and very saddened renter of yours that will further this cause unless I receive an apology - I await your response..................
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#3 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Owner response

AUTHOR: Jeff - (United States of America)

We are very dissapointed this guest was completely unsatisfied with our house.  We are all for an online forum for venting and reporting complaints.


Any vacation property owner will tell you there is usually one or two guests in the busiest season that get upset with cleanliness in mid summer with back to back same day check out and check in's which everybody does to accomodate full week stay's.  A deeper clean and maintenance check is probably in order mid summer, lesson learned.  We had a new cleaning gal earlier this year and frankly we really liked her work and persoanl touches but its entirely possible the her quality fell off just prior to this guests visist.  I went to the house after their departure to evaluate the condition and agree the cob webs in corners and dusty areas and windows that needed cleaning, and sure enough there were specks in the microwave.  The AC cover vents had dust and the grill was not cleaned and the outside frig had mildew stains around the magnetic edge that simply will not come clean.  The sofa needed to have the Oxy fresh cleaning in a few areas and vacuumed underneath.  We did have a few dead bees in the laundry room.  My normal procedure has been to tell the cleaning gal to leave non expired condiments in the frig and toss everything else.  We do take guest complaints very seriously and try to make adjustments and improvements every year.

On the eve of our guests arrival they called to tell me of their displeasure and I offered to come up the next morning to address every concern and to get them happy with the cleanliness and whatever it took.  I couldn't see what they were seeing so I was more than happy to come and offered numerous times. That wasn't an acceptableanswer to them so I offered $100 refund for cleaning or restuarant gift cert, not acceptable.  I called our cleaning gal and she assured me she left the house in good condition and rent ready and was very adamant about that.

A quick summary of this vacation home and improvements for your review:  Purchased in Oct 2000 and remodeling began in 2001.  The upstairs suite is brand new with bath and laundry room.  We expanded the middle bedroom and quadrupled the size of the kitchen and built new cabinets, bar and installed new appliances.  The bedrooms all got new furniture except the futon.  We rocked the fireplace inside and installed the new mantle. We built the covered area outside and rocked around the fire pit and made an area to get out of the weather to be able to be out of weather and still grill and hang out listening to the creek.  To clear the rhodadendron and trees to the creek is just not feasible or to my liking and we built a covered swing down by the creek so parents can watch the kids play in the creek.  The sofa is from the early 90's and was recovered and refurbished but is still a little dated, it still sits and snoozes well and fits the room nicely, it is on the list to get updated in the near future.  The living room and front bedroom windows are the originals and would cost a small fortune to replace which is just not feasible right now.  The washer is new this yr as is the inside frig with water and ice in the door.  The living room TV was up graded to 32" 720p.  The front door was switched out for one with oval opaque glass this yr.  The down stairs bathroom got new tile and toliet and accent lighting.  Sheets, towels, pillows, dishes, stainless stell cookware and every imaginable cooking devise are all kept fresh and fairly new.  We added a couple new bar stools this yr as well.

Ninety five percent of our guests love the house and have an awesome time here.  I have had a few stressful vacations myself and I've had guests that probably had a stressful time.  I've rented homes at higher rates that don't offer anything like what you get here.  These folks drove for 9 hours with 2 kids and 2 labradors and towing a 4 wheeler so I imagine they were a little stressed on arrival, the last 8 miles in here is a state maintained gravel road, pictures of which are on the web site and description.  The thing that gets me is When I offered to come up and address every concern that was totally unacceptable.

Their rate for the week was $1155 or $165 per night and the pet fee for 2 dogs was $140, cleaning fee was $65 and plus NC tax for a total of $1465.  I search the web and I can't find properties that offer what we do that will accept 2 Labs and a 4 wheeler at that rate.

I personally went up to inspect after their departure and agree we had dust and some concerns that needed attention.  Nothing I saw would make me write such a cutting report as what we received.  I did find they either let their dog poop on the floor or worse they left it in the house for spite.

We are repectful owners and do have standards that 95% of our guest are very happy with and write glowing reviews.  We can always find ways to improve so I still learned form this one.  Did these folks get the perfect house-cleaning job, probably not?  Is the house and furnishings exactly what you see on the Internet, YES!  After all this we did make a change in cleaning staff and hopefully with an extra owner clean during the busy seasons I can eliminate guests from having a bad experience like this one.  It's a tough economy I've resisted raising rates or cleaning fees.  We've never increased rates since we opened our home to the public in 2004.  We are in the people pleasing business apparently we failed at this one.

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