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What would you do?? What is a normal time of project going over?

2 months ago

Hi! We are in the end stages of a partial downstairs remodel. It began at the end of September. New kitchen and kitchen into dining into living room walls were sheet rocked b/c of previous ugly textured surface. New small powder room and new tile flooring in kitchen, hallway and powder room. One 6 foot wall wall was pushed back 3 feet in kitchen, and EVERY THING ELSE IS PRE EXISITNG. Same wood floors in lving and dining. Our end date and final walk through was supposed to be the 2nd week of January. We are still living in our bedroom. The painter's stuff is still in our entry way b/c he has to finish. That's another story. BTW, he drives almost 2 hours to and from and shows up at 10 and leaves at 2. We have a project manager. He has hung up on my husband twice when my husband told him that he needed to meet us at our home b/c we have things that are not acceptable for a $2++,000 job.. Company seemed reputable when we hired them. The paint job is questionable. The sheet rocked walls that we got b/c we wanted smooth, are a little rough b/c apparently the sheet rocker sanded??? There are lots of little painting mistakes, but a lot of little adds up to one big mistake, you know? I'll show some photos and painters and the like, please chime in to tell us if we're being ridiculous. I hate to complain when we have a lovely house, but I AM OVER LIVING IN OUR BEDROOM AN D DISPLACED. No time frame has been given to us as to completion.

We have had no one at our house for a week at a time for a few months now. paint on new tile, splatters on newly painted trim, new trim and sills seem to not have been sanded and these brush stokes...

new french doors sheet rock? paint?

weather stripping?



new base board heater

is the painting done? Mind you, we have speckles as well, of green on our new trim from the roller


Comments (29)

  • PRO
    2 months ago

    I'm assuming you owe your contractor a balance? Give them a punchlist and a reasonable deadline for completion. If they fail, hire the punchlist out and take it off their bill.

    Gela Captain thanked Joseph Corlett, LLC
  • 2 months ago

    Do u think we're being nitpicky with the painting, etc.?

  • 2 months ago

    Painting is not looking like a professional job.

    Gela Captain thanked Missy Bee
  • 2 months ago

    You are not being too picky. The paint and walls do look terrible. Living in a bedroom is so frustrating. (Been there, done that.)


    I've become confused by what a "punch list" is. I think a lot of contractors now take that to mean the period of time at the end of your job when they have wandered off and there are uncompleted parts of the project and medium or large items they have done horribly wrong that need to be redone. You don't know when they are coming back yet they are circling around preparing you to give them the final installment.


    Most importantly, how much do you still owe them and what percentage of the total is that?

    Gela Captain thanked Kendrah
  • 2 months ago

    Looks like he hired his wife's out of work, drug addict, alcohol impaired brothers to do the drywall and painting.


    The walls weren't sanded, but the seams should have been so much smoother than that even before sanding. Then they went ahead and painted over the slop that the drywaller left. It is now a much bigger job to get the walls fixed and after they are fixed they will need to be repainted. The ceilings need to be sanded or skim coated and sanded and repainted with flat paint as well as all the walls.


    I only hope for your sake that the tiler and other subs had more experience and weren't all drunk when they did their work.


    No your not being fussy, your expecting work that you are having done to be done correctly.


    You obviously don't know a lot about drywall and painting. To expand your knowledge watch some you tube videos showing how to drywall, skim coat and paint. This is awful.


    Gela Captain thanked Jennifer Hogan
  • 2 months ago

    I am not sure that the time frame is the problem. The quality of the work is really poor and sloppy.


    I would be willing (and have been) to put up with endless delays, because the end product is always good, despite the inconsistency of the people doing it.


    Your project would be awful if they had turned it over on time and on budget, and they are just adding insult to injury by dragging it out.


    Gela Captain thanked palimpsest
  • 2 months ago

    Usually punchlist items aren't as extensive as this looks. As Jennifer said, this needs significant rework. Hopefully you do still owe them some money. I would tell them point blank you're not going to pay them and find someone else to fix and finish. Having done everything this way to begin with I'm not sure how you could trust them to fix it. In order to forestall a lien you may want to also consult an attorney about how to proceed. Document any conversations and keep emails you have with the contractor.

    Gela Captain thanked kandrewspa
  • 2 months ago

    The fact someone will need to fix things back to baseline will up the cost

  • PRO
    2 months ago

    That's not a punchlist. That's a start over and pick someone else to do it.

    Gela Captain thanked Minardi
  • 2 months ago

    Having done everything this way to begin with I'm not sure how you could trust them to fix it.


    Very prudent comment @kandrewspa. On our last renovation project, even our architect - a frequent collaborator with our contractor - told us that much to her dismay the contractor's work looked so bad that we should just eat the cost of having someone else make the corrections. She did not trust them to come back and be able to fix and that they would probably damage something in the process.


    We ended up doing this because in NY there is a terrible law that allows a contractor to quickly and with little effort put a lien on your home even if you are certain they are at fault. We tried withholding money for them to fix or for us to use the remainder to fix. And the law was not on our side. I cut the list in half of things I could get them to come back and do. The rest I hired out the on-staff plumbers in our building (NYC coop) to revise and complete the work.


    The only challenging aspect of this is it can be very hard to get contractors to come in and do work that is a revision of someone else's work. Most are not eager to take these jobs. We dealt with this in a house before and it was a tremendous headache. In our coop it was a little easier because there is a staff of people who want to make money on the side.

    Gela Captain thanked Kendrah
  • 2 months ago

    On the same project I lost two contractors. I had one contractor (plaster restoration) come in, see what his employee had done, fire her, and then abandon the entire project and a room with scaffolding in it. I never paid him anything, but it cost me a lot more to undo what they had messed up +do it correctly

    The general contractor had a nervous breakdown or something and he also abandoned the project --earlier aspects of the project-- and for someone else to take over I had to get some sort of letter of release before the contractor I found who would even consider taking it on would take it on. Both of them came highly recommended.

    But believe it or not I actually dodged a bullet on that project. One of the original contractors I had talked to ghosted me before he even got started. But he was in prison because he ran over and killed someone while he was lighting his crack pipe. He had also come recommended but obviously something had changed.

    Gela Captain thanked palimpsest
  • 2 months ago

    SO, met with PM today. He agreed painting looks terrible. We demanded another painter. He told us that the other painter, who is more local, is not as good as the one who painted our walls. Really? He also said that other painters dislike fixing jobs painted by other painters. My husband did agree with this. We also decided that if we were to go with another painter, and that said painter wasn't good, that it would be on us instead of Blackdog Builders. (Oops, did I say the company's name?) So, a large company with over 3 project managers only has 2 painters to choose from? So frustrated. We decided to let the PM handle the painter and they are coming on Wed to "fix" things. At one point, he denied that the laundry room was painted by them, b/c it was so poorly painted. We have a 3 year warranty from finish (whenever that will be) but why would we want to deal? Do it right the first time.

  • 2 months ago

    oh my G, palimpsest, ypou really put it into perpective on so many levels. I'm happy ypou had a happy ending. I wish we werent dealing with a large company...

  • 2 months ago

    I did not mean to one-up your situation, or put your job in some kind of better perspective. I would be very disappointed with the way things have turned out thus far in your project. The final outcome of mine was that I got a very good carpenter, a good electrician, a good plumber and a good painter out of the general contractor who was willing to take over the project that had become such a mess. I did not like that GC at all, she acted like she was doing you a huge favor by accepting your money--and neither did any of these subs, they all went their separate ways and I use them independently. During that last project that went so badly though, we were without a kitchen for 4-1/2 years.

    I put up with some relatively long delays or gaps now only because I appreciate the quality of the work that they do for me now, when I can pin them down.

  • 2 months ago

    I didn’t take it that way at all, and I must not have been wearing my readers when I type my response. Geez. Your story makes me appreciate things and also gives me hope!

  • 2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    We have a 3 year warranty from finish (whenever that will be) but why would we want to deal?


    I called my most recent contractor 2 months after he finished because the baseboard paint became completely cracked all up and down the board like a broken glass window. Certainly within the warranty period. He said they wouldn't honor it and it was like that because of exterior brick work being done to my building. I told him that exterior brick work had been done on my building for over 5 years. He still said he wouldn't cover it because of weather... whatever that means. What was the point in my arguing with an ass who doesn't know how to do it right in the first place?


    Again, so sorry for the predicament you are in. You are certainly not alone. Get out a punching bag and release some anger on it!

  • 2 months ago

    Thanks. Oh man! It’s like money doesn’t matter. My husband told the PM yesterday that we’re paying lot of $ to have to deal w all of these issues. He had the balls to say “well, Blackdog is paying a lot of $ too”. What the hell does that mean? I’m up at 5 AM w all of this anger and intuition that we’re getting screwed, wanting to email the CEO, but my husband said to wait and see what sort of work they perform this week. I just saw a new google review of the company and it sounds like exactly what we’re going through. Only 2 negative reviews. I wonder if Blackdog can control reviews? Maybe people are simply blind and clueless or maybe we got the B team.

  • PRO
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    Thirty four days, a true story:

    To do what, you ask? To totally rip/ re carpet the second floor only and two stairways in a 4600 sq foot home, and paint every wall, every stick of ceiling and trim and the entirety of every closet including any shelving within. Two baths, also got thrown in for paint.

    To this moment at which all has been reinvented to fresh as a daisy, all beds restored to their homes and some new decor involved. No construction. Zero. Every bit of art back on walls but reinvented to new placing where desirable.

    What took this long? HAH! The rip, the virtually endless in/out of furniture and displacement - the movers in and out ( I lost count ) as four poster beds, mattresses, and purging of client contents and no you can't make it up! The pecking order for paint in what room, what color, when and in what ORDER to assure paint perfection, carpet install perfection, the least possible disruption to the homeowner.

    Who ran the show? The painter? No. the homeowner? No. The carpet folks installing the luxury material? No. Me.

    I can assure you, it is perfectly redone,( yes, excellent painters/ carpet installers as well) and I am fairly exhausted, but the owner is one very happy camper.

    Your best friend, ( often) in a remodel, or even a major redecorate project ? The interior designer with the trade relationships. The go between - you, the contractor, the painter and all. Call her the "hammer" and the contractor is not usually the best HAMMER.

    Outcome hinges on process and you can never underestimate process. Capital P. in that word. Makes me need a nap.: )

  • PRO
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    You've never told us how much and what % of the job you still owe him. That's an importance piece of information. And the only real leverage you have.

  • 2 months ago

    We owe 12 grand, so we’re pretty much paid, unfortunately

  • 2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    So the PM agreed that the painting was terrible. What did he say they were going to do to fix it. Did you discuss the fact that the drywall was not properly finished before the paint went on the walls? What is the plan to correct the issues? Throwing more paint around isn't the answer.


    When the PM told you that the local painter is worse then the one you have did you calmly explain to him that you did not pay for excuses, you paid for quality workmanship.

    Gela Captain thanked Jennifer Hogan
  • 2 months ago

    thank you. His plan is to throw more paint around. we're going to print your response.

  • 2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    Since you have paid the bulk of the money out and don't have enough left over to completely re-do the work I would be contacting the owner of the company.

    Not sure that this is the blackdogbuilders you are using, but they seem to indicate that they are wanting to provide excellence.

    I would approach the owner with a sense of disappointment and a feeling that you believe he must be unaware of the issues that are happening in your project and you are sure that he would not want this poor quality work to be associated with his good name.

    I would quote statements from their "About us" page and say how disappointed he must be that the PM, drywall installer and painter have disparaged his values and expectations.

    Show him that you are on his side and they are the ill reputes who are trying to ruin his reputation and kindly ask for his assistance in finding a remedy.

    If you don't have the knowledge to identify the issues hire a painter for a 1 hour consultation to explain exactly what has gone wrong so that you can explain it in your communication and sound like you honestly do understand what is wrong and what needs to be done to correct the problem. Otherwise you risk them just continuing to throw more paint on the problem. They need to stop painting and start fixing the underlying causes, fix the drywall, clean up any and all paint splatter . . . A painter will be able to help you know the correct process that should have happened and how to fix it.

    Keep anger out of the communication.

    Add pictures to an attachment.


    https://www.blackdogbuilders.com/about-us/

  • 2 months ago

    Thank you so much very much for all of your input. Yes it is, which is why we went with them in the first place. Very knowledgeable, helpful, thoughtful suggestions. I had a painter’s website on my computer this AM, wondering if I should call for a consult.

  • 2 months ago

    It certainly doesn’t sound like they are currently living up to their posted Mission statement. I hope they make things right for you.

    Gela Captain thanked s y
  • 2 months ago

    When I got my first car I took her to the local garage where my mom and dad and the older 5 kids all took their cars. Then I moved away and took my car into some unknown garage when it was due for an oil change. They told me that my car needed this that and the other, but I couldn't afford to do everything, so I did the highest priority items but I didn't replace the shocks and struts. I took it back to the same garage for the next oil change and they came up with a whole new list of things that needed done, but it didn't need shocks or struts this time. Somehow they had miraculously self healed. I didn't do anything other than the oil change and started learning about cars. I'm still no expert, but I know enough to question when repairs are recommended that don't sound right.


    If we don't learn how things are supposed to be done we are easy victims. Every day on this forum we see people who hired someone to tile their shower and they question the outcome and someone says it wasn't water sealed properly or someone shows an island that doesn't have the right support or someone shows a kitchen design where the refrigerator is against a wall and won't open or the aisles are too narrow or the toilet placement isn't to code . . .


    Learning about home repairs and construction, reading the posts on Houzz and learning what the experts on this forum tell others is information that will save you from having situations like this. You will know before they start the next step that the first step was missed.


    Yes - call the painter and get started on your education.

  • 2 months ago

    Yes indeed! I couldn’t agree more. I’m fortunate enough that my husband knows enough about painting, to notice no Sandi g, brush is horrible, no back brush after rolling, etc and onward. The issue is that he has voiced this to PM. I cringe as they’re working on our house today and I know they’re painting over, just like you said. What you’ve given us, and the other’s who have commented, is confidence in ourselves to stand up for us. We’re going to the CEO. Grateful for your input.

  • 2 months ago

    The problem with painting over falls under the heading of garbage in and garbage out, Every time they slap more on is more to be stripped, and dollars out the window, yes the more to strip, the more time to strip, the dollars it will cost you. What is there cannot be fixed, it needs to be removed, sanded and prepped properly, primed and painted. Not more slopped on top.