Back to Blog

Dale Investigates: Missing a Porch

Tweet

There are lots of ways to find a contractor when you need something built. One woman found her contractor in a slightly unorthodox way: she met him at a home improvement store! She made a deal for what seemed like a simple job, but when the job was only partially completed, the contractor vanished on her. Hear how Dale investigated and made it right!

Kathy Sirko was at a home improvement store and met someone she thought she could trust. He said he was a contractor. They talked a bit, and he agreed to do some work for her.

Kathy wanted to build a screened in porch for her family to enjoy. The contractor came to her home, and they discussed the project. He drew up some plans, and they negotiated what Kathy thought was a fair price. Sure enough, he showed up again and began the work. But after he built the initial framing, the contractor stopped showing up.

Kathy gave him the benefit of the doubt and tried to contact him. That’s when the excuses started. At first, the contractor claimed that he had been in a car accident. He said he had hit someone on a bicycle and couldn’t talk, and abruptly ended the call. A few days later, she called again. This time the contractor said that he had been in the hospital have a heart stent put in. Both of these stories tugged at her heartstrings if they were true, but something seemed fishy.

When the contractor informed Kathy that he had been in the hospital, he agreed to come back in just a few days to finish the work he had started. But he never showed up. He also stopped returning her calls. Kathy was left feeling stupid and like she should never have trusted this man.

To make matters worse, he didn’t just leave her with an unfinished porch. He had already taken $8,000 for the work!

With that kind of money on the line, Kathy was intent on getting her money’s worth or at least getting it back. She filed both a civil and a criminal complaint. And that’s also when she contacted TrustDALE.

TrustDALE tried to contact the contractor on Kathy’s behalf. But he wouldn’t return our calls.

It looked like we were hitting the same dead end that Kathy had been reaching. So we set up a sting. A TrustDALE employee called the contractor pretending to have some business. In fact, we asked for the very same service, a screened-in porch. Now the contractor was happy to meet. That was a sharp contrast to the cold shoulder he was giving Kathy and our team.

When our TrustDALE sting team went out to meet the contractor, he seemed interested in the new business. But when Dale showed up the with the cameras and microphone, he quickly got into his car and left the scene. All he would say is that he had declared bankruptcy, and then sped off. Of course, that seemed like a pretty fishy story, considering he was about to accept some new work.

However, having come face to face with the TrustDALE team, the contractor didn’t want to take any chances. He texted Kathy’s son and offered to pay her back the $8,000 he had charged. 

But there’s a big difference between a promise and a payment.

This is where the TrustDALE team comes in. We made a deal with the contractor to pay back the $8,000 he took from Kathy in 16 monthly payments of $500. As long as he held up his end of the deal, TrustDALE wouldn’t release his identity.

At TrustDALE, we don’t just want to hear your problems. We want to make it right.

Luckily, this contractor was willing to do the right thing in the end, so as long as he stays on top of his obligation, we’ll keep his identity confidential.

If you need a contractor, you can find TrustDALE certified contractors here. Don’t leave it up to chance. When you have a job, trust Dale to get it done right!