So, the long sordid saga.
To recap. I hired a guy to install an above ground pool. The first day was supposed to be him assembling all the parts and the second day was supposed to be leveling the land with a bobcat (a small tractor) and putting up the pool.
The first day he came with a helper and brought all the boxes around to the backyard and inventoried them. We found that one box was missing. It was a fairly important part so he wasn’t going to be able to do the assembly he had planned to do.
Now, at this point, I suggested that maybe he should wait until after the part came to do the whole job. That would have been in my best interest because I ended up having to buy a large tarp to cover the leveled area. It was going to rain all week and I have two dogs who I didn’t want getting into the mud and sand.
But, he mumbled that he had already paid for the bobcat.
While using the bobcat, he completely tore up my front yard and cracked my concrete patio. I did not see thse things until he left.
At the end of the day, I went to put the tarp on the area and he said that he likes the sand to be wet. I told him that we had a hose and water for that.
I told him that I didn’t want my dogs getting into the mess. He said that I should keep them on a leash.
I told him that wouldn’t be possible. He, in turn, told me that I should be willing to “sacrifice for my pool.”
I wanted to fire him at that point but wasn’t sure how or what to do. My husband thought we should just go with it. I figured that I would give him one more chance to get it done.
So, the missing parts arrived on Thursday and he came on Friday to do the assembly and put up the pool. He told me that it would “be a long day” and that he would be there early.
He showed up at 9:30 am with a helper. They managed to assemble the uprights and then his helper came down with some sort of illness and everything stopped.
He said that someone was coming to pick up his helper and take him to the hospital and that other guys were going to come and help him continue.
No one else showed up.
Around 4 pm, he was getting ready to leave and he knocked on the door to give me the warranty papers from one of the pool boxes.
He was talking about how things were taking longer than he thought with the part being missing at first and now his helper being sick and he said: “Your pool is cursed!”
I said “No it’s not.” And I went into the house.
He had also said to me that he would be here today (Saturday) at 8 am because it was going to be a “long day.”
He showed up at 10:30 am with a new helper. By 11:20, they were gone again. He came back at 1:20 and was in and out of the backyard for about an hour or so.
They had not made any real progress since the day before. By 2:30 pm, he was asking about a hose for filling the pool which was ridiculous because he was very far from being ready for that.
By 3 pm, I decided enough was enough. I went to the ATM and took out some cash and wrote up a receipt.
I went out into the backyard and asked to talk with him. As soon as he realized that I was firing him he started using the F word and lambasting me—that I didn’t understand, that it wasn’t his fault the parts were not there last week. And he said “I told you you shouldn’t buy a (****) pool from that (****) guy on the internet. Those parts missing messed everything up.
I told him that would pay him X amount for what he had done and that we were through. He tried for more than that and I said no. He tried again, I said “You’ll take $X and we’re done. I’m not doing more than that.”
He continued to find reasons that it was my fault that it wasn’t getting done and I told him “You cracked my patio.” He said “I did not.” I said, “you did” and he actually admitted that he “may have.”
I pointed out that he had done a lot of damage to my front yard as well and that I was done.
Then, he said “When you hire some crackpot to finish the job and they do it badly and you call me to come back and fix it, I’m going to charge you double.”
I simply said “I’m not going to call you. I’m going to get you a pen.” So he could sign the receipt of the cash.
So, he is gone! Hiring him at all was a tremendous mistake on my part. Not having a written contract was a second huge mistake.
But, overall, I feel great because I finally stood up for myself and took care of the problem.
A new installer is going to cost me a lot so that the overall job will end up costing me 50% more but that’s life. At least the job will get done and done right.
The thing that really kept eating away at me was that I just didn’t trust the guy anymore.
At one point yesterday (Friday) I was staking the setback line to make sure the pool was not too close to the property line and he said “Audrey, you’re just making more work for me. You have to trust me.”
No. No, I don’t.
You live. You learn.
Also, thank you to everyone who said almost a week ago to fire him immediately. My husband was not supportive of my decision to get rid of him and I told him “Look, just after what he did last weekend, everyone on ehell said to can him. And while its easier said than done, they are right!”