Fort Myers couple warns of pool contractor hassle
FORT MYERS, FL – There was supposed to be a pool behind the Halls house in Fort Myers, but the family says what started as a way to break the boredom of quarantine soon turned into a pandemic.
“We were looking for a way to give the kids this escape, and they love swimming,” said Luke Hall. “We researched a few pool entrepreneurs and then the one we landed on was actually a referral from a trusted source.”
The halls say they did their homework at the company they were referred to.
“I checked the company name, license, insurance and everything was up to date,” he said.
And they said they trusted the man who claimed to represent the company was just as high as the company’s ratings, but they soon saw red flags.
“He had us write the check to a DBA, a different company than the main company in the contract,” Hall said.
Shortly thereafter, the halls say the contractor’s attitude has changed. He was rude and unresponsive and pushed the construction dates back further.
Then the halls decided to go deeper into the man himself and they said they found some shocking things including:
“There was no legal relationship with him and the company he represented,” he said.
It’s a scenario that is rare, but possible, according to the Charlotte County Community Development Director.
“There are a lot of people out there who want to take advantage of people,” said Ben Bailey.
Bailey adds that your county construction department doesn’t have access to employee files for every registered contractor or company. However, here are some things you can do to protect yourself:
“Ask the contractor who will be doing the work on his house to get some names and ask if it is an actual employee or a subcontractor,” he said.
Once you have the information, you can do your own background checks from there.
“One thing we forget to check is, ‘Hey, is this person I actually met with legally affiliated with this company?’ and if not, you might want to hit the brakes, “said Luke Hall.
The halls were able to get their money back despite first saying the contractor tried to keep half.