1. Take photos, videos, and keep the documentation. Make a list of all the issues you have encountered with the contractor and document them with photos and videos. Keep all your communication with the contractor in writing, including emails, texts, and letters. Photos can go a long way in capturing what work was actually performed versus what wasn’t, so if there is a dispute later, you will have the photos as a great point of reference. This will make it a lot easier in communicating with a lawyer for a bad contractor.
2. Communicate with the contractor: Try to work out the issues with the contractor by communicating with them directly. Clearly explain the issues you are having and what you would like them to do to fix them. Be calm and polite, but firm in your expectations. But, if you are here on this site, you have probably already been down that road. We can help you determine if it is strategically better to stop communicating and having an attorney step in.
3. Check your contract: Review your contract to see if the contractor is in breach of their agreement. If so, you may be able to terminate the contract and seek compensation. The issue is that often the language in a contract will be either non-existent or not favorable to you. However, there are other theories that you may be able to recover. For example, if the contractor’s work has been subpar, you may have a claim for negligence.
4. Get a second opinion: If you are unsure about the quality of the work, consider getting a second opinion from a qualified professional. They can assess the work and provide you with an expert opinion on whether it meets industry standards. We work with a lot of construction professionals who have experience assessing whether work is below the standard of what you should have gotten.
5. Seek legal advice: If the issues cannot be resolved and you believe the contractor has breached the contract, you may need to seek legal advice. We have a lot of experience in advising people on construction defect cases, both from the perspective of a homeowner or a builder. We can advise you on your options and help you take legal action if necessary. This is a specialized field so you should seek out an experienced and reputable lawyer for a bad contractor. I have been doing this for a while and know a number of the lawyers and experts who practice in this area.
6. Should I leave a bad review? As good as it may feel to leave a scathing review, I typically don’t recommend that. You could leave yourself exposed to potential claims involving defamation. If there is a potential lawsuit, it is far better to have a judge, jury, or arbitrator weighing your credibility on the stand. An angry review will not reflect the best version of yourself and may be used as evidence against you.