Timber! Or Not.

I feel like I always have to learn things the hard way. I have to tell you, it's getting kind of old. Recently, I've learned the value of being patient and taking the time needed to find reviews on the service people that I hire to do work for me. I hope that doesn't sound snotty. It's not. Here's what has happened.

On June 7th, we had a freak storm with hail that lasted 5-10 mins. No big deal, right? Well, for me, that storm knocked two huge branches out of my enormous trees in the backyard. The debris fell in my yard and in my neighbors yard as well as across the fence between us. As far as damage, I was lucky. Very lucky. But I had a real problem on my hands. I have 30 plus foot trees in my yard and they needed trimmed or cut down and it needed to happen quick. They were calling for heavy storms by the end of the week.

Right away I start looking online for companies. I came across a local business and left a voicemail message. I called a little after 9pm so when I got a return call a few minutes later, I was impressed. The owner agreed to meet me before work the next morning.

And he did. He showed up. We looked over both my back and front yards. We talked estimates and the next thing I know, I'm signing an estimate. I felt very worried about the upcoming storm and this guy was here and offering to get started.

I signed the paper June 8th. He showed up a few days later (which was expected). I was under the impression this would be done between Friday and Saturday that week.

They showed up and had one mechanical problem after another. Finally, they drove off for the day. One tree mostly down. Debris all over my yard. Oh, and he had a verbal run in with my neighbor that had parts of my tree now laying across his backyard. (I had to smooth that over)

They showed up another day the next week. The first tree is down and a good start on tree number two. But they had to pack it in again....this time because a machine was "leaking hydraulic oil all over my yard". Ok, fine.

By this time, I'm now on vacation and I expect to be notified that it's all completed while I'm away. Guess what? More excuses. My favorite is the one where he tells me he's left me a few voicemails. Yeah, ok. (I hate being lied to).

At this point, I've paid for half the job. It seemed like a fair practice so I paid at the time, expecting this to wrap up within a few more days. Fast forward another week (yes, it has been over 3 weeks since this started and it still is not done) and I get the story that a tire was falling off another machine. (Seriously? What is wrong with this guy's equipment? This is how he makes a living, right?)

This has been my view for 3 weeks. One tree is down and gone. The other...is just hanging around.

On June 30th, I have texted him twice and called a few times (guess who's voicemail is full?) and now I'm very angry because I've had no response and I still have half a 30 ft tree in the back yard and he hasn't even STARTED the front yard.

So, I sent him another text that day stating our contract only outlined the cutting down and hauling away the two trees in the back yard. I told him in "all caps", DO NOT cut anything from the front yard. I explained I have been extremely patient, that I understand things come up and I even let him lie to me about him leaving me voicemails (I totally call BS on this one.) but now he needs to call me so we can talk about when he is going to finish the job (minus the front yard).

Surprise....I got a call. Full of excuses "I left three voicemails" and "didn't you get my text?" I hate to tell you buddy, I text all day long AND people leave me voicemail and I get each one, from everyone but you....whatever. (Did I mention I hate being lied to?). I want to give him a piece of my mind. I want to tell him to get his supplies (yes he has left some stuff in my yard for over three weeks!). But instead, I know I have paid him for half the job and he has done less than half the work. So I put on my "patient, I understand voice" and accept that he will be by in the morning. To finish the job in its entirety. (I call BS on this too)

July 1st and he calls and reiterates he and his crew are coming over to get to work. But what he really wanted to tell me is that they are calling for rain and "you know I can't control the weather...blah, blah, blah".

July 2nd he called again...more excuses, not coming until Wednesday or Thursday next week... I told him to come next week and finish the work I paid for but I made it very clear I have been extremely patient and I'm now over this process. I told him without question he is not to touch the front yard. He is to finish what was contracted for which he began but has not completed, clean up and get out. He agreed. I want this all behind me and now I have to have someone else take care of the front yard.

We will see how long this nightmare goes on. But I have definitely learned a few things from my new "buddy".

The two big ones are:
*get a time frame for the project to be completed.
*read reviews on the business.

I was feeling so overwhelmed by the trees falling, damage to the neighbor's yard, how am I going to pay for this and so many other thoughts that were racing through my brain, that I signed the paper without getting other estimates or checking reviews on this business. I find it so stressful to have to make these big homeowner decisions on my own. This will not happen again. I just want this all over with and behind me. I have paid for a service that was started over three weeks ago. I have been more than patient and I'm so over it. I don't think it is too much to ask for business owner to provide the service that was paid for in a timely manner. I am choosing to chalk this up to another hard lesson learned. If you need someone to cut down/remove any trees, contact me first, I'll tell who NOT to hire.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

1 comment :

  1. I am so sorry for this stressful situation, my friend :/ I hope that this week brings better happenings.


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