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DVS Hardscaper
10-30-2009, 07:55 PM
Ok, well, I'll try anything once.

From time to time I hear people say "we won't do a job where there is another contractor doing work in our area, either we do it all or we aren't interested".

Yesterday I learned a lesson. Never again will I agree to do a job where another contractor will also be involved.


So we're doing this masonry porch expansion at a very high end residence. We dug the footings, poured concrete, formed the porch with masonry block, veneered the block with brick that matches the home, and will be covering the porch with flagstone. This porch is on the front of the home.

The front lawn hs had some water drainage issues. Water from the downspouts and a/c condensation lines was not drainging off the lawn. So the owner wanted to have the down spouts piped away from the dwelling and off to a wooded area at the side of the property. The piping is to go right through our work zone.

I give them a price of $1300 do perform this work. They have a lawn guy that mows the lawn, picks weeds, trims shrubs, etc for them. he works solo, so naturally his prices will be lower. He was $800.00 less. So they gave the work to him.

2 days ago they have him come in and install a pipe where the walk is to go. He had to install the pipe prior to us installing the walk.

Well, their property is irrigated. In the area of our porch expansion were 2 sprinkler heads. The whole time we diligently worked around them. We were last at the site on Tuesday. The heads were untouched and were in place just as they were before we began the project.

So I go there yesterday to check on the mason. The Mrs is outside and I ask here is everything looks ok. She says "yes" and rips into me about the lines leading to the sprinkler heads. She tells me that the lawn guy said when he installed his pipe that he discovered the lines were severed, and that "someone has to pay for it".

Well, I know for a fact the we DID NOT touch the lines. No doubt in my mind. SO I try to tell her that we had nothing to do with the cuts in the line. She starts calling me a liar, she even called me an A-- Whole. SHe tells me that the lawn guy is very honest and would never lie, and so on and so on.

So today I go there to pay the mason. He has things cleaned up and I have a better view of the ground, etc. I see that the lawn guy's pipe is installed right inline with were the sprinkler heads were! Infact the brick mason even stated that it is clear the lawn guy cut the sprinkler lines!

It's an easy, ten dollar fix, no big deal. My issue is that we did not have anything to do with the lines getting cut. We even have a clause in the contract stating we're not responsible for disturbances created underground. I tried to tell the lady that they remained untouched when we were last there. She started calling me a liar, yelling at me, and treating me like a dog! The lines are easy to fix, all she had to do was say "hey, can you do us a favor and fix the lines".

Never again will I agree to do a job where someone else, not affiliated with my company (a sub-contractor, employee) is working. Something goes bad and next thing you know the one that created the disturbance is denying any involvement. I even told the lady before we started not to let him do any work until I said it was ok for him to do so.

And I tell you, this lawn guy is so friendly and personal. yeah, that lying SOB couldn't admit to his mistake and simply fix it. He knew we had an excavator there digging the footings. But........we we hand dug where the irrigation lines were....and we stopped about 14-inches away from them!!!!!!!




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Hanau
10-30-2009, 07:59 PM
It sucks, but at least it was only a $10 fix.

We've all been there at one point or another. At times I've thought about taking time stamped photos of the job before I leave.

stuvecorp
10-30-2009, 08:09 PM
I feel your pain, it sucks when you get stuck holding the bag. The project I'm at now, we spent two days digging out and compacting the mess the excavator left us. I was told, 'they forgot the compactor' and they mixed black dirt in with the sand. Now I'm the bad guy for informing the builder how unhappy I was.

DVS Hardscaper
10-30-2009, 08:31 PM
I forgot to mention that the Mrs. did apologize to me and she even stated that I'm "stiil on" her "christmas list", yet I have reason to believe that she still thinks we did it.


Years ago we had a custom builder whom we did work for. Great, small builder. Paid his bills within 7 days. Had pleanty of work for us.

Well he was doing a community with house on lots about 1/4 acre. His excavator guy had one machine. A CAT 963. The machine was way too big for the lots. therefore he could not do a quality grading job. So I complained to the builder. We worked out an arrangement that if the grading was within so many inches - we fix it at our cost. If it was out of the tolerence set forth - we bill the builder for our time. Fair enough. Well, because he excavator had a monster of a machine - naturally we were constantly billing for correcting his grading. The builder got mad and of course it was our fault. He canned us and brought in another landscaper.




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Isobel
10-30-2009, 09:04 PM
I usually don't like working with a bunch of other contractors on site either.

There was one job i did where the client had a sprinkler system installed prior to us going in and laying in a new lawn, and some walkways. Sure enough we hit an irrigation line while putting in one of the walkways. It was a $3 fix, I did it, and informed the irrigator. He was fine with it, and there's never been a problem since.

There was another job where I was doing a patio and landscape install, and the client had someone else come in and put in a fence. The fence guy was saying how they'd have to take out part of the patio. The client said, "no problem, we'll have our landscaper fix it for free." Now mind you I was in ear-shot of this conversation. I walked over and said, "No I won't. Any changes to this patio due to a fence being installed, will cost you extra."
I finished that job, took my pictures, and walked away.

tthomass
10-31-2009, 07:36 PM
Cut his downspout line :)

kootoomootoo
10-31-2009, 08:46 PM
spread hydraulic fluid all over the lawn.......must have been from the mowing guy.

DVS Hardscaper
10-31-2009, 09:21 PM
spread hydraulic fluid all over the lawn.......must have been from the mowing guy.


don't give me any ideas!



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tthomass
11-01-2009, 01:52 PM
Unrelated but similar story I guess.......in college a buddy of mine had $600 stolen from him. Found out who did it and every time an approach was attempted the guy fled. My friend decided he'd make him spend it later on and 3 sets of tires later haha. Wrong but sweet.

nylandscapepro
11-01-2009, 07:27 PM
It's probably not sloped correctly either and when it backs up that will be your fault to, hire a lawn guy to install drainage that sounds like a great idea!?WTF!