Friday, October 26, 2007


It requires a great deal of patience to recreate a project timeline and make so anyone can understand it.

I have found that removing emotion and sticking with just the facts is the best way to go. It is helpful to have pictures, video clips and names and dates of people you have talked to during the process.

So far the most time consuming effort has been to scan in all documents and invoices into the computer and back them up on CD.

The second step was to make sure the checks written agreed with the invoices presented and it all matched the bank statements. Using Microsoft Excel has greatly simplified this process while ensuring accuracy.

I am on the third step right now which is to put this all together in one package for easy review. I have the facts. All I can do now is present them and see how my work is received.

Friday, October 19, 2007

BBB Process - Response & Rebuttal

When I read Dan's response, I can honestly say I was not surprised. I mean what did I think he was going to say. "Sure, now that I have heard from the BBB I will take care of the Partingtons right away".

Please, of course he did not admit to anything or offer any kind of settlement. It is all Travis and Kim's fault.

What I am trying to say is when you or I deal with a contractor is understand while this is a personal, emotional, situation you have to have thick skin and look at the response with detachment.

This is easier said than done. Even though I have everything documented and can articulate my position, and have the full support of my wife, reading the things Dan wrote is not easy to take.


The Better Business Bureau offer customers the option to rebute the response from the business. Customers have 10 days to provide a rebuttal. I am going to provide a rebuttal to state our position. We will see what happens.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Back again - Update

I have been crazy busy with some stuff going on. I am filed with the BBB and they sent him a letter and the contractor replied. Of course he is blameless, the BBB will send his reponse in writing and I will have the oppurtunity to provide a rebuttal.

His response to the situation to date does not change how we feel about Dan Stanton. Our position is we would not want him to work on anyone else's home.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Better Business Bureau - Complaint Sent

I filed the complaint last night against the contractor. It could not have been easier. The website walks you through what to do and give you the contact information for the nearest BBB office. I can log onto the BBB website anytime to see the status of complaint.

Having the 30 day demand letter on hand was a good reference to frame the complaint and what I wanted for a successful conclusion to the issue. Also being able to state Dan's response or lack of response to the letter (Note: There was no response)was a bonus for stating my case.

The BBB will contact the contractor and attempt to get his side of the story. They will mail him the contents of my complaint. Dan can respond as he could have to the demand letter or simply choose not to acknowledge it in any way. This process takes 15 - 35 days from the time the complaint was filed.

Will anything come out this? I don't know, but I am trying to take all action I can before I go to the Office of Consumer Affairs and Licensing Department.

Friday, September 14, 2007

30 Day Demand Letter - Time expired

I sent the contractor the 30 day demand letter 31 days ago. The letter was signed for on 08/13/07 by the contractor. We have not heard from him during the 30 day time period. It is time to proceed as planned.

About Demand Letters - FYI A layman's definition

A demand letter is exactly that. It is letter written by a legal entity or person to declare the through some one's actions or inaction damages have been suffered. The letter should detail the damages and the relief expected. Regardless of who (lawyer or customer) is writing the demand letter, the letter must be written, sent certified mail, and 30 days must be allowed to expire before taking any additional action.

This allows the other party to respond to the demand letter. That is not to say the response will be acceptable to the letter writer; however, a response usually demonstrates a willingness to work the issue out between the two parties or with the services of an arbitrator.

If no response is received from the recipient at the end of the 30 day period several options are available to the person who is claiming damages.

My intention is to follow through on the options available to me.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

September 11th

Today is September 11th 2007. Six years ago I was working in downtown Boston when the first word sprang up that something was wrong in NY. It was hard for me to believe that over 3000 of my fellow countrymen died in the space of a few hours.

Nothing my wife and I have experienced in our lives can compare to the loss the families of 9/11 experience each day since this tragedy. We just wanted to take a moment and say that our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone who lost friends and family on September 11th.

We also wanted say thanks to the brave members of our armed forces whose dedication and service allows us to continue to have the freedom and quality of life we enjoy as Americans. We salute you.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Mistake #1 - Not hiring a lawyer

Remember Item #5 from, Please Read Me First? We did not have a lawyer look over the proposal or contract from Dan Stanton.

Why didn't we have a lawyer look at the contract written by Dan? Well, at the time we thought there was no way he was going to screw us over because he had just returned to the Massachusetts area. Also, he was a registered contractor who was going to pull all the permits for the project himself. This was also his first big job and we thought he would do anything to ensure the project went smoothly. All we had to do was submit any changes in writing and ensure he was paid in a timely fashion. The signed contract was specific and thorough enough that we felt good about signing it.

While I believe that the contract helps us more than it helps Dan at this point, hindsight tells us we should have paid a lawyer to review it and suggest changes to limit our liability.

If you live in Massachusetts, you can go to http://www.masslawhelp for assistance in finding a lawyer to assist you with contract review in your area. The service is free.

The lesson here is if you are going to invest the amount of money and time on your home with a home improvement contractor, get a lawyer and have all the paperwork reviewed before giving the contractor ONE dime!
Your contractor should see it as a way of protecting both parties. I would not hire a contractor who would not let a lawyer review all paperwork.

Learn from this mistake, if you don't read another post from this blog, this lesson could save you money and heartache. Next post will look at the project from a cost overview perceptive.