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Paid $14,000 to have an indoor waterfall every time it rains

"My daughter's contractor even poured a concrete pad in the middle of her driveway with the extra concrete from the basement because he thought she could build a shed on it. He never asked and now she has to remove it before winter so she can park on her driveway."


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October 17, 2014 by Steve Payne

Here’s another homeowner reporting a renovation nightmare, posted by Lynne D

We have to ask, has anyone else decided to “pour a concrete pad in the middle of a driveway” without permission, preventing your customer from parking their car, after receiving $14,000 and leaving an “indoor waterfall” situation, etc.  Wow.

“I am going through (a renovation nightmare). My daughter bought her first house in January, and to say it’s a fixer-upper is a major understatement. She’s gotten quite a bit of work done, and been very happy with it, until it was time to do the basement. My husband and I agreed to finance her reno so she could have a solid, dry basement. The walls were damp and moldy, and every time it rained, her basement would leak. We hired a contractor who assured us he would treat it like his own home, and do it once, and do it right. We have now paid him $14,000 and have an indoor waterfall every time it rains. He did not complete approximately 1/2 the work, and what he did was shoddy and unprofessional. He even poured a concrete pad in the middle of her driveway with the extra concrete from the basement because he thought she could build a shed on it. He never asked and now she has to remove it before winter so she can park on her driveway. We are out of funds, and my only option is to pursue this in small claims court. It is a shame that so many excellent contractors are lumped in with someone like this who was obviously out to make a fast buck, and takes no pride in his work. I now have to find a couple of contractors who would be willing to look at what was supposed to be done, and give me an estimate as to what it would cost to finish. Hopefully, if small claims court is successful, I will be able to hire someone to do it right. Otherwise, it’s duct tape and DIY!!”


Steve Payne

Steve Payne

Steve Payne is the editor of Canadian Contractor magazine
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3 Comments » for Paid $14,000 to have an indoor waterfall every time it rains
  1. John Stefanits (Wal-Tech Drainage) Strathroy, Ont. says:

    My company has been waterproofing basements for 30 years. Unfortunately many homeowners or their lawyers call on me to help in the 11th hour. I would be happy to look into this for you and provide recommendations.

  2. Marten Burghgraef says:

    So were are you located?

  3. Robert says:

    My sympathies that you and your family have to deal with a renovation nightmare.
    I’m curious as to how you found yourself in this situation. I tell all my potential clients that the planning stage is the most important part of any project and a good plan will yield good to great results. Conversely no planning usually gives mixed results if not disastrous disappointment. Ask the hard questions, Are you licensed, Are you bonded, Are you WCB insured, Are you insured for liability, Do you have a contract, Do you do this for a full time living or is it something else? Do you belong to any associations?
    If the guy says no to more than one or two of these questions, maybe you should keep looking.
    P.S. Small claims court establishes who owes who, then you have to try and collect.