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Old 12-06-2012, 10:33 PM  
synthesis2 synthesis2 is offline
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I know I am probably screwed but need advice

Make the situation quick, wanted my deck redecked and found a guy on craigslist that does it. His companies name is "brown can do" and he had been around for a long time and had done work for a family member several years ago. Anyway everything seemed legit.

With that said he came out to the house, he was a little rough dress wise but seemed to have his stuff together and at least talked the talk to make you feel better about it.

Said he would order the composite boards but needed a deposit for the materials ($2500)

I gave him the money and let me know a few days later than those boards were on backorder so I gave some other ideas and he has since not got back to me.

Here is the question ( I know I was a dumb ass for even giving him a deposit I get it) but I intentially didn't sign the check as my safety net and if he would have asked me about it I was going to tell him that as soon as I see an order I will sign it.

Needless to say he signed my check and cashed it and I have not hear from him since and its been a month.

Here is the question should I

1) Go to small claims court? he may not have a penny to piss in and would loose in a landslide

2) Go to my bank and tell them I didn't sign the check and see what happens from there?

Just curious which was would be better to go.
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:07 PM   #16
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:14 PM   #17
La literatura La literatura is offline
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Whoops. State law gives construction guys mechanics liens in case they don't get paid, so never give them an advance.

Okay, but lesson learned. Good luck. I would think you would get a default judgment in the county, then spend some time with the cops looking for forger. Then file your judgment in his county and attach his property. I would expect it to take time and probably not get full return, but you never know.
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:21 PM   #18
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1. Don't do business on craigslist.
2. If you do business on craigslist, don't advance any money.
3. If you're on a site with one of the best deck builders in the metro, call him first.
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:34 PM   #19
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:39 PM   #20
Willie Lanier Willie Lanier is offline
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Go buy a framing hammer with your last 20 dollars and smack yourself in the head with it.

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Really? How do you trust anyone in that particular sector of business? No disrespect to anyone in that industry, but if I'm doing anything on the house, I don't write a check before work is done...

Unless it's family...
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:41 PM   #21
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Yeah. This is a matter for the police now.

Next time a guy wants you to pay for materials up front, have the materials delivered to your site in your name and pay the supplier yourself upon delivery. Then it won't matter if the contract labor flakes out on you.

This guy either wanted to rip you off from the get-go, or he wanted you to become the banker for his business. Either situation is bullshit.
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:48 PM   #22
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Really? How do you trust anyone in that particular sector of business? No disrespect to anyone in that industry, but if I'm doing anything on the house, I don't write a check before work is done...

Unless it's family...
You wouldn't do business me then. We make and agree upon a sensible payment schedule before work commences. That way if you get hit by a bus or are trying to take advantage of me, I don't lose my house. If I get hit by a bus or am trying to take advantage of you, you're not hurt too badly either. I can't buy $5k worth of material and then float you a loan while paying for the labor to have it all installed. There's a reasonable compromise and if you do business with reputable people who have real businesses your risk is minimal. If you do business with people from craigslist or want ads, you're going to be screwed more often than not. I've been hurt a whole lot worse by deadbeat clients than this guy was screwed by a scam artist.
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:55 PM   #23
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You wouldn't do business me then. We make and agree upon a sensible payment schedule before work commences. That way if you get hit by a bus or are trying to take advantage of me, I don't lose my house. If I get hit by a bus or am trying to take advantage of you, you're not hurt too badly either. I can't buy $5k worth of material and then float you a loan while paying for the labor to have it all installed. There's a reasonable compromise and if you do business with reputable people who have real businesses your risk is minimal. If you do business with people from craigslist or want ads, you're going to be screwed more often than not. I've been hurt a whole lot worse by deadbeat clients than this guy was screwed by a scam artist.
The way I see it, you want your client to lend you money to pay for your employees. If your client is paying your expenses throughout the job, what exactly do they need you for?
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:58 PM   #24
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The way I see it, you want your client to lend you money to pay for your employees. If your client is paying your expenses throughout the job, what exactly do they need you for?
No. Not at all. I want paid for materials as they're delivered. I want paid for a half-done job when it's half done. I can't do a $50k job and wait a month to get paid on it. Some guys can and do.

I lost $15k to a lady when I first moved to KC. That will never happen again. Ever.

They need me for my expertise, resources and labor. I don't need a grocery store. I can create everything they sell there. I just don't have time, tools, nor expertise.
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Old 12-07-2012, 12:02 AM   #25
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Old 12-07-2012, 12:04 AM   #26
La literatura La literatura is offline
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No. Not at all. I want paid for materials as they're delivered. I want paid for a half-done job when it's half done. I can't do a $50k job and wait a month to get paid on it. Some guys can and do.

I lost $15k to a lady when I first moved to KC. That will never happen again. Ever.
here's where the theory hits the street, I suppose. My understanding is that the mechanics lien attaches whatever you built or improved upon. But there's no protection for all the lost hours spent, huh.

Last edited by La literatura; 12-07-2012 at 12:19 AM..
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Old 12-07-2012, 12:09 AM   #27
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here's where the theory hits the books, I suppose. My understanding is that the mechanics lien attaches whatever you built or improved upon. But there's no protection for all the lost hours spent, huh.
Mechanics liens are awesome for new construction. Because the title can't be transferred without the lien being paid. They're worthless for an existing home because you're out the materials and labor you put in plus the filing costs of renewing the lien. My mistake was working on a rental for a lady that won't transfer title until she dies. There's no way I'm throwing $50 a year at that for 40 years until she's dead. I'm already out $15k. Live and learn. I learned.
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Old 12-07-2012, 12:09 AM   #28
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No. Not at all. I want paid for materials as they're delivered. I want paid for a half-done job when it's half done. I can't do a $50k job and wait a month to get paid on it. Some guys can and do.

I lost $15k to a lady when I first moved to KC. That will never happen again. Ever.

They need me for my expertise, resources and labor. I don't need a grocery store. I can create everything they sell there. I just don't have time, tools, nor expertise.
I've never had a grocery store just disappear with my money, and except for Costco, they've never asked me to pay in advance.

I understand your position, and we might be able to come to an agreement only if I knew and trusted your reputation.
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Old 12-07-2012, 12:14 AM   #29
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I've never had a grocery store just disappear with my money, and except for Costco, they've never asked me to pay in advance.

I understand your position, and we might be able to come to an agreement only if I knew and trusted your reputation.
We're on the same page. Reputation is 60% of closing for me.
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Old 12-07-2012, 12:17 AM   #30
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We're on the same page. Reputation is 60% of closing for me.
It's a joy to find people who have that kind of reputation. It's a relatively rare and valuable asset.
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