Taking a Break

NOTE: As of September 23, 2009, this post has been edited in
accordance with a court-mediated settlement. The names of the
contractor and his excavation subcontractor have been replaced with

Our contractor informed us that it would be cheaper for him to stop working for a few months and wait for our basement to dry out before continuing the work. Today he came by and removed all of his tools, and took down his sign. The porta-potty got moved to the curb and will be hauled away tomorrow.

Suprisingly there were no sparks today when our contractor (Contractor A, whose negligence got us into this mess) met with a representative (Thomas) from another foundation contracting firm (Counterforce in Oakland CA). In our negotiations about price to complete the job, Contractor A (who was given to making stupid challenges while under the false assumption that we would not rise to them) had challenged us to find another contractor who would be able to do it for less money. We took him up on that challenge and asked Counterforce to produce some bids for us. Those bids will be very useful in negotiating the final price with Contractor A (who was already making sounds about prices for finishing the work that indicated he had no intention of keeping his end of the contract he signed). And, if negotiations with Contractor A (who had already told me he was drinking a lot and had reacted violently to a discussion we tried to have with him about budget and costs) go poorly, we've got ready-to-go bids from another contractor who can finish the job.

We talked with a lawyer last week about our situation and are now taking several steps based on that advice. We hope it doesn't need to progress any further with legal proceedings, but we want to cover our bases in case it comes to that. More later.

posted by noel on 04/26/05