Our Patio Debacle

We decided that this was the year to hire someone to put in a new patio.We interviewed 4 contractors and chose one from Pittsfield (about 20 miles away).  We chose him because he was referred by a general contractor and he had a three ring binder with photographs of all the walls,fireplaces and patios he had one-really beautiful work.  He said he had thirty years of experience and we paid more than we had expected because we had seen his work and we wanted a nice job since we would not change it again in our lifetime. Well the short story is he did a rotten job-the material between the flagstones never hardened -causing the ashy residue to lay on top of the flagstones and when trying to swep it this material would sweep right out.  The slates would tip,the slope was wrong causing the water to run towards and settle at the base of the clapboards and the moisture wicked up the boards-I’ll not go on. We are now having all this dug out and a new masonry work will be done in several weeks. We felt we had been taken!! We had a contract with a license number, signatures of both the general contractor and “his masonry man” and a satisfaction guarantee.  OK sounds as if we practiced due diligence-I guess not.  Since the last day he told my husband he needed the money-we were assured the material between the flagstone would harden-he was paid the remainder of the contract price.  Now the “mason”will no longer answer our calls or letter.

We have a date in small claims court now. I don’t know how much good it will do other than give me some satisfaction. I keep thinking of my mother’s words”Sue a beggar ,catch a louse.” Beware of contractors in these economic times.I wish my hair was not gray because I keep hearing about contractors fleecing the elderly!!!UGGHHH We are so embarassed to be in this situation.

Patio slates

The next step-

Patio Repair