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Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: Mr Doof] #2934184
03/26/19 08:18 PM
03/26/19 08:18 PM
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It has gotta suck being a somewhat honest contractor having to compete pricewise with all these fly by night scammers out there.

Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: everysurfr] #2934281
03/26/19 10:57 PM
03/26/19 10:57 PM
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Originally Posted By: everysurfr
That's why I hate the CSLB. All your aggravation, and all they do is write him a letter, that says next time he better be good, or maybe they will get mad at him.


Yeah.....

We're going to contact CSLB to get more details so we can better determine if legal action has a chance of getting some of our money back.

Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: Mr Doof] #2934325
03/27/19 01:09 AM
03/27/19 01:09 AM
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wow doof! hopefully you can get some piece of mind out of this experience and get the project completed soon. there are really good contractors out there believe it or not, and Im really surprised this contractor actually has come back to complete what he has. obviously the cslb thinks he's done an ok enough job with their reply, what a shame.

once established, its not hard competing for work against unlicensed guys, if you do good work and show you're a professional, you are bound to get consistent referral work, which is what I do.

If you have any paint or painting questions hit me up

Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: JBerry] #2934351
03/27/19 02:26 AM
03/27/19 02:26 AM
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Originally Posted By: JBerry
wow doof! hopefully you can get some piece of mind out of this experience and get the project completed soon. there are really good contractors out there believe it or not, and Im really surprised this contractor actually has come back to complete what he has. obviously the cslb thinks he's done an ok enough job with their reply, what a shame.

once established, its not hard competing for work against unlicensed guys, if you do good work and show you're a professional, you are bound to get consistent referral work, which is what I do.

If you have any paint or painting questions hit me up


+1 I started my own plumbing company about 3 years ago and was terrified I would be struggling to find work. Each successful project lead to a call or two from their contacts looking for someone they could trust. I've never had to advertise and now I'm constantly turning work down. Easy to stand out if you are reasonably priced and take pride in your craftsmanship.

Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: Mr Doof] #2934584
03/27/19 05:58 PM
03/27/19 05:58 PM
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This morning.....

As I was eating breakfast with the wan overcast gloom sneaking in under the tree ferns and into the kitchen nook, heard some noise on the scaffolding.

"Oh crap," I think, " not again," and I make way way to the bat, grab it, and look out the front window.

The main worker is here, so I put on some shoes and go to greet him (never had a problem with the workers, just the management).

"Hey, whats new?"

"You get the email about the stucco work today?"

"No, but thats ok, I'll look into that. Stucco work to commence today?"

"Yes, I'm here to cover up the stairs and clean up the garage."

"Ok, great. I'll go tell Sweetie-pie."

Go in and tell my sleeping wife the stucco work is starting to day.

With groggy stare, she tells me that we need to iron out more things and "I thought they said the concrete needs to cure for 21 or 28 days...it hasn't been that long."

"I'll check into that as well."

So, things are moving towards a finish line but I don't think that finish line is 100% agreed to yet.

Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: tedshred] #2934590
03/27/19 06:10 PM
03/27/19 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted By: tedshred
Originally Posted By: JBerry
wow doof! hopefully you can get some piece of mind out of this experience and get the project completed soon. there are really good contractors out there believe it or not, and Im really surprised this contractor actually has come back to complete what he has. obviously the cslb thinks he's done an ok enough job with their reply, what a shame.

once established, its not hard competing for work against unlicensed guys, if you do good work and show you're a professional, you are bound to get consistent referral work, which is what I do.

If you have any paint or painting questions hit me up


+1 I started my own plumbing company about 3 years ago and was terrified I would be struggling to find work. Each successful project lead to a call or two from their contacts looking for someone they could trust. I've never had to advertise and now I'm constantly turning work down. Easy to stand out if you are reasonably priced and take pride in your craftsmanship.



Appreciate the points of view you two bring to this thread. Without a doubt there are good people in the field, I see evidence of that in the replies I've already received.

Before the work started, like for the previous 3 years, we asked friends and friends of friends for referrals. I'd say 60% of my inquiries were never returned. And most the ones that did reply didn't show up on time for the initial meeting or submitted bids that were so vague/open to interpretation/open-ended that turned us right off or asked to be paid a % prior to bid submission.

When we finally got three bids, the one we went with was the best, most comprehensive bid there was, and not the cheapest...in the end, even not "cheaping out" saved us time/hassle.

Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: Mr Doof] #2934618
03/27/19 06:49 PM
03/27/19 06:49 PM
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It kind of counter intuitive, but being a good builder doesn't always translate into being good at paperwork.


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Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: Mr Doof] #2934625
03/27/19 06:59 PM
03/27/19 06:59 PM
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Originally Posted By: Mr Doof
This morning.....

As I was eating breakfast with the wan overcast gloom sneaking in under the tree ferns and into the kitchen nook, heard some noise on the scaffolding.

"Oh crap," I think, " not again," and I make way way to the bat, grab it, and look out the front window.

The main worker is here, so I put on some shoes and go to greet him (never had a problem with the workers, just the management).

"Hey, whats new?"

"You get the email about the stucco work today?"

"No, but thats ok, I'll look into that. Stucco work to commence today?"

"Yes, I'm here to cover up the stairs and clean up the garage."

"Ok, great. I'll go tell Sweetie-pie."

Go in and tell my sleeping wife the stucco work is starting to day.

With groggy stare, she tells me that we need to iron out more things and "I thought they said the concrete needs to cure for 21 or 28 days...it hasn't been that long."

"I'll check into that as well."

So, things are moving towards a finish line but I don't think that finish line is 100% agreed to yet.

day after a pour, concrete can be walked on with rubber soled shoes. Up to about three days it will chip pretty easy if you drop something on it. After a week, you can drive a car on it. It will be at 70% strength by then. 28 days is for full cure. Keeping it constantly moist for those first 7 days can double the final strength.

https://www.engr.psu.edu/ce/courses/ce584/concrete/library/construction/curing/curing.html


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Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: everysurfr] #2934865
03/28/19 02:26 AM
03/28/19 02:26 AM
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Originally Posted By: everysurfr
It kind of counter intuitive, but being a good builder doesn't always translate into being good at paperwork.



Yes, seems like a lot of times the companies with a lot of branding, office staff, etc lose focus on the actual product they are delivering. I work with a lot of different General Contractors and would personally choose the smaller guy with 4-5 employees over the larger ones. One guy on site that is knowledgeable about schedule, coordination with subs, client's preferences is so valuable. Larger companies often have carpenters and laborers on site with a PM that might stop by once a day to check in. Lots of room for error with that management style.

Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: tedshred] #2936622
04/01/19 10:40 PM
04/01/19 10:40 PM
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I had a landscaping company servicing my yard and they were great. The company then got voted best in the state and they expanded.

The owner of the company wasnt coming to the site anymore and he had crews doing the work and the owner was running the larger jobs.

The quality of work absolutely tanked. Completely shit the bed when he stopped coming to the job site with the crew.

Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: Mr Doof] #2941394
04/12/19 05:57 PM
04/12/19 05:57 PM
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Quick update:

Talked to a new general contractor about getting a repair bid for the unauthorized exploratory "holes" the old contractor did on my house. He says that is a one day job to fix, maybe two with just him and his partner...says he will email me bid in the next few days. Old contractor gave me "three men for 3-4 or 5 days".

Final stucco coat going on today. Am totally happy with this sub-contractor. Will likely hire them to re-stucco the repair work on the holes.

Maybe next week get the rest of the house painted. I keep asking for a schedule and keep getting nothing. Suspect they are still upset and CSLB decision to fine them in the wrong.

Last edited by Mr Doof; 04/12/19 05:58 PM.
Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: Mr Doof] #2941662
04/13/19 04:27 AM
04/13/19 04:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Mr Doof


Before the work started, like for the previous 3 years, we asked friends and friends of friends for referrals. I'd say 60% of my inquiries were never returned. And most the ones that did reply didn't show up on time for the initial meeting or submitted bids that were so vague/open to interpretation/open-ended that turned us right off or asked to be paid a % prior to bid submission.

When we finally got three bids, the one we went with was the best, most comprehensive bid there was, and not the cheapest...in the end, even not "cheaping out" saved us time/hassle.


As it turns out, when a good chunk of the Bay Area floods, then burns down, then floods again, contractors get really busy.


all i ever wanted in life was a consistent 6-10 foot righthand barrel
Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: Mr Doof] #2943250
04/17/19 05:33 PM
04/17/19 05:33 PM
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Another day in construction purgatory...

So, now getting work done on repairing the arch over the front doorway after a fair bit of back and forth.

Got a payment schedule as part of this Change Order.

Does anyone know if the same contract law for home repair payment requirements applies to Change Orders?

In other words, in California, if I have a repair contract for greater than $500 (I think that is the threshold) , I have to pay 10% down or $1000, whichever is less, and that further payments are tied to milestones, not dates.

Then I get a change order for $12,000. For the first payment of the Change Order, do I pay 10% or $1000, whichever is less, or do I pay what they ask for, say $4000?

Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: Mr Doof] #2943599
04/18/19 03:06 PM
04/18/19 03:06 PM
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I don't know what your law is there about down payments on work and I don't know the law here in NY either but I can address the spirit of the law from my commercial experience in private and public work. I don't think change order rules would be different than regular rules where payment is concerned.

The 10% down seems reasonable, it covers the contractors organizational work to get things started. First of all a schedule of values (milestones) should be made which is consistent with the way the work will have to be done. The schedule takes some thought and should be keyed to things like inspections which are natural inflection points in the work, especially inspections as this drives the contractor to get the work approved. As work progresses these are some things which contracts generally recognize should be paid as they occur:

Mobilization (job boxes and equipment placed on job site)
Delivery of materials to job site (value of the materials only - beware of "Front Loading" where early things are valued by the contractor higher than their worth.
Rough-in electrical inspection
Installation of fixtures

You get the idea. Also the idea is to always be behind where the contractor is moneywise until work is 100% correctly completed and accepted. If a milestone is not 100% complete and accepted do not pay for any of the milestone (but be sure to show that you are anxious to pay for anything that is accepted - this builds trust). This way you are always holding the contractors money until each piece is 100%. Control the money and you control the work. Think of it this way (a bit exaggerated but to make a point) if you pay a contractor for work which is not 100% complete there is no reason for them to come back - they already have what they wanted - the money. You must always be in a position where they have something to gain by coming back.

In an AIA (Architects Institute of America) standard contract (the gold standard of fair to both parties) there are these concepts also:
Retainage - 10% of every milestone is held back by the owner until the warrantee period has elapsed - generally a year after beneficial use. this is retained to cover anything unseen that crops up.
If you sign a contract for say windows and a driveway and then cancel the driveway the contractor is entitled to his profit on the driveway. I think this is to address his loss of opportunity - say he passed up other work.
Extra work is priced at direct cost + 10% overhead + 10% profit (21% total). This is in many contracts. the original work is bid by multiple bidders at above 21% markup because no one can exactly estimate labor for a complicated job (Material, yes - that cost is known) but markups have to be higher to address risk and unknowns. Some jobs make 30% some lose money. But extra work, being as how the actual hours worked can be recorded may be in the contract as contractor shows receipts then gets 10 and 10 - but only for small extras to the original work, usually capped at 15% - the idea being that its just for small adjustments - not an extra wing on the building - the contractor agrees to take a haircut and not make anything on that work. The cost to negotiate small extras actually makes them often not worth doing.


Last edited by PJ; 04/18/19 03:08 PM.

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kZg_ALxEz0
Re: Anyone ever report a contractor to CSLB [Re: Mr Doof] #2943604
04/18/19 03:11 PM
04/18/19 03:11 PM
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When I do contracts of that sort, I usually work out a payment schedule. If the job is a good amount of days, say 3,4 or more weeks worth, outside of the original down payment, I usually ask for a weekly or bi-weekly payment of the total, until finished, and the final payment due upon final completion walkthru.

When Change orders are placed, I usually just add it to the grand total, and when payments are due, I expect a percentage of that change order along with the original estimate due, within that agreed upon payment schedule.

When I have extras added, it always adds more time to the job, so I try to keep that in mind with the original payment schedule. As long as the homeowners are acting on good faith and giving me something I am pretty flexible.

If it looks like they have done a decent amount of work then give them $4k or so, some contractors have alot of overhead and need to pay their guys, insurance, materials, etc. Keep them happy as the work is progressing and they will hopefully return the favor and get the job done on time with quality.

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