The Joys and Dangers of Picking Up the Pieces After a Bad Contractor Leaves

Posted by Marilynn F. on 20th Jul 2023

Bad Contractor Remodel

When a homeowner has called you in after encountering an unscrupulous contractor, it presents you with both an opportunity and a challenge. When you come in and do the job right, you will seem like a hero in comparison to the previous company. On the other hand, getting the job in the first place will likely be more difficult. These are just the first examples of the joys and dangers of following an unscrupulous contractor. Here are some more:

The Joys

Most of the joys of taking on secondhand jobs come in when the other company did some of the work at least decently well, but then disappeared or otherwise refused to finish the job. Then, you don’t have as much groundwork to do because at least some of it was already done for you. If you’re comfortable with doing so, you can pick up where they left off to get your customer’s praise – and her check.

If the other contractor did a bad job, you have more work ahead of you because you have to tear out their shoddy work before you can start. The positive side of this is that you can then charge for some demolition on top of your usual price.

The Dangers

The first problem in these cases is getting hired in the first place. Burned customers may have become hostile to your entire profession to the point that you’ll be glad when the job is over.

Next is the danger associated with leaving any of the other contractor’s work in place. If you do, you may become responsible for anything that goes wrong with it. This makes it so that you have to be extra-sure that the existing workmanship is fine if you plan to simply complete a build instead of redoing the entire job.

When the prior workmanship was bad, you have no choice but to rip it all out. The danger here is that part of the original structure may be damaged in the process or that you’ll be blamed for damaging it. This makes it so you have to be extra-careful when making good on bad work.

The Surprises

Some people will call you and claim that their other contractor ditched out or didn’t know what they were doing, but upon starting the job, you realize that this wasn’t really the case. Unfinished work may well be the result of unfinished payments or other big problems on the customer’s end. A “prior contractor” may also be blamed for what is actually a homeowner’s botched DIY project. Because of these possibilities, it’s sometimes a good idea to do a bit of checking around instead of just taking the customer at his or her word.

These are just some of the joys and dangers of being the one who picks up where an absconded or fired contractor left off. In many cases, it’s worth taking on these projects. Just remember that there are some exceptions, and you and your company should be successful with this type of work.

About The Author

Marilynn F. has been writing professionally since 2009 and writing for her own sites since 2000. She has written a lot of articles for builders and contractors. Most of these articles provide an overview of the services provided by clients in the industry or promote the idea of hiring them to do a certain project. Several articles offer tips for finding a builder in a certain area. Other than writing, Marilynn enjoys gardening, figuring out how to fix things, upgrading her computer on her own, green products, and many other things.

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