(WSVN) – She hired someone to redo a bathroom not only did they do that, but their sloppy work caused a neighbor’s ceiling to collapse. Does the company have to pay for the damage they caused? They said no. Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser said hold on.
Karin likes to write, sometimes it’s for a newspaper.
Karin Stahl: “I’ve written stories mostly about Miami history.”
And sometimes her stories are for her favorite; a magazine.
Karin Stahl: “Because a magazine article tells you a lot more depth.”
Today, Karin could write another story about a dream turning into a disaster.
Karin Stahl: “And I also wanted him to do brand new tiles all through the bathroom, the new bathtub, the new sink, the new toilets and two new bathroom cabinets.”
Karin hired a fellow who specializes in tile. He charged her $10,500 dollars and also did the plumbing work.
The floor looks good, but the day he finished the job, Karin started hearing sounds.
Karin Stahl: “And a funny, weird sound started in the bathtub, and under the floors of my bathroom were very sticky.”
Karin tried to get the tile guy to come back and find out what was going on. He wouldn’t but she soon knew what that weird sound was.
Karin Stahl: “Then I heard ‘bang, bang, bang, bang, bang’ on the door, and Ricky, the maintenance man, came in and said the bathroom downstairs, the ceiling has collapsed.”
The ceiling in the apartment below had fallen after water came pouring down from Karin’s tub and sink.
When her tile guy wouldn’t come to fix the problems, she hired a licensed plumber who quickly saw what the tile guy did wrong.
Karin Stahl: “The bathtub drain was not inserted properly and they said just these words to me, ‘They have butchered your bathroom.’”
It took the plumbing company six hours to fix what the tile guy messed up and Karin got their bill.
Karin Stahl: “The shoddy work has cost me now an extra $2,200 for the plumbing company to come back and correct the mistakes”
Karin asked the man who originally installed the tile and plumbing to pay the $2,200 bill. He wouldn’t even talk to her.
Karin Stahl: “I was pretty upset.”
She paid a tile guy to work on her bathroom and then $2,200 to repair what he broke.
Karin Stahl: “At what point does a contractor’s responsibility end? Does it end as soon as they finish the job and they can say just because work completed, they can just say, ‘I’m all done.”
Your turn, Howard.
Howard Finkelstein, 7News legal expert: “If they are negligent in the work, they do, and if it causes damage, they have to pay for the repairs. How long does the guarantee of the work last? It’s complicated because the law uses the word reasonable amount of time. Another problem with these types of repairmen, they don’t have the money to pay for the damage, so it’s hard for you to get your money from them.”
The man who botched the remodeling job would not talk to us.
We finally went to his apartment and left a card.
His wife then called, we went back and forth. They didn’t want to pay for the repairs.
But I didn’t give up, they thought the plumber’s bill was too high but would pay $1,200 to Karin.
Karin accepted the $1,200, reluctantly.
Karin Stahl: “If he was being a really good contractor and really owning up to his mistake, he would have paid me the entire $2,200.
Karin wishes she could have written the perfect ending to her story, But she told me if she hadn’t penned a note to Help Me Howard, she wouldn’t have gotten anything.
Karin Stahl: “Yes, I’m very glad I called you. Thank you very much.”
One note, before you hire someone, make sure they are licensed and insured. That way, you can try to collect through their insurance if they mess up. And if they don’t have insurance, you have to decide whether to move forward with them or walk away.
A problem draining you? Don’t want a watered-down solution? Leak it to us, before things come crashing down on you.
With this Help Me Howard, I’m Patrick Fraser, 7News.
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