Project: Contractor Project Abandonment

Contractor Project Abandonment
Evaluation and Audit
Dublin, CA 

History: This homeowner hired a contractor to build a large 1,500sf addition to their existing one story home. The contract was approximately $150,000, and the contractor was paid $120,000, before abandoning the project. The contractor claimed money was still owed, and refused to release the permit and plans to the owner.

Scope: The homeowner contacted All About Homes to evaluate the contractor’s work, and the percentage of work completed in order to help facilitate a resolution. AAH provided the following services:

  • Met with the building department and worked with staff to get plans and permits transferred to owner.
  • Drafted a list of deficiencies in the work performed by the contractor, and established a basic scope to complete the project.
  • Obtained bids to complete project from new contractors.
  • Provided quality control inspections as the work was being completed.
Once the homeowner had control of the plans and permits, they were able to negotiate and contract with a general contracting firm to correct deficiencies and complete the project. Completing the job cost the owner 30% more than the contract with the original contractor. The owner filed suit against the contractor for the damages incurred in finishing the job.

Lesson Learned: Not everyone can understand the intricacies of home construction, the importance of having a defined scope of work, or the need for a well drafted contract when planning an addition or the remodeling of a house.  Contractors do not necessarily consider a home owners’ specific concerns or provide the detailed descriptions of work or contractual  provisions necessary for a job to be successful.  Home owners are well advised to consider working with the appropriate construction professionals and seeking the advice of an attorney when attempting a major investment in their homes.

These individuals can assist in creating a clear and defined scope of work and contractual terms to describe the expectations of the home owner and contractor.  In addition, it is wise to have someone perform periodic inspections of the work, particularly before a progress payment is made, to ensure the work reflects the terms of the contract and acceptable standards of workmanship.  Working with a  construction professional to assist in the planning and oversight of a job will minimize hidden issues as well as alleviate many future headaches.

Unfinished Waterproofing

Exposed Stucco

Unfinished Framing