We recently got new siding done in our flip and the work is sloppy at best. When we pointed out the issues - they did some patch work that made it look even worse. We're not happy with the work at all as there are some very obvious issues that should've been addressed but the owner is refusing to do anything about it. In some areas of the siding - we can see the old siding that was there, in a place or two some pieces are hanging loose, the soffits are coming out, window trims look like it was done by a 10 yr old - all very legitimate issues to us. We gave him multiple chances to fix it but he is not doing anything about it. So we're holding his final payment (15%) since he has not completed the work. He says that we're being neat picky and has threatened us and told us that he will put a lien on the house. It was a small 1500 sq ft house and it took him 6 weeks to finish it - it was supposed to be done in 3 days. He had made our initial deposit of 50% over 3 months ago. He has been delinquent on his side this whole time. What are my legal options? We do not trust him to complete the job to our satisfaction and want to bring in someone else to complete it. We are in NJ - how do we fight his false lien and avoid problems during closing?
@Kinjal S. What does you contract say? I'd get another company out to give you an estimate and their opinion. Then tell him how much it will cost to have it fixed. Depending on the dollar amount, you can take him to small claims court. Try the better business bureau though the one time we tried to go through them, they were completely useless.
I'd talk to a lawyer. It may be illegal to withhold payments similar to how tenants cannot withhold rent.
@Theresa Harris Thank you! Yes, BBB is completely useless. We're trying to get an estimate also get a siding inspection done and get a report. We absolutely do not mind paying him the difference if there's any left after the fixes are done.
@Nicole Heasley Thanks Nicole. He has not completely his work - there are still outstanding items on his end. If we pay him, that means we're out of options. He's not willing to correct the mistakes so we will most likely talk to a lawyer after we get an inspection done.
@Kinjal S. Talk a local attorney familiar with your state lien laws. In most states, if he Giles a lien, you can “bond it off” from the property by placing a cash amount, usually 110-125% the amount of the lien in an escrow account. This allows the sale of the property, which kills the lienor’s biggest threat, then you can deal with it at your leisure.
Typically you can contest it which shortens his required time to actually file suit to enforce the lien.
Do you have any kind of contract in place with the contractor?
@Kinjal S. Make sure you take pictures if you haven't already.
@Wayne Brooks Thanks Wayne! I will definitely look into contesting his lien.
@Frank Geiger Yes, we've a written contract. My issue is that he is calling his poor patch work as work completed. He did the new siding for us and it doesn't look new because of the issues.
@Brian K. Have lots of pictures!
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