A Sachse woman says she lost thousands of dollars trying to remodel her master bathroom. She says the contractor ran into a snag halfway through the job and didn't come back.
"We’ve lived here for 27 years and our bathroom was in a 27 year old state of distress and we saved up a long time for it," said Mary Saathoff.
$8,000 is how much they had saved for a new bathroom.
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She found Mike Mireles Construction to do the job and asked for references.
"I asked him over and over again, I said could I have the numbers to some of your people and it just never happened he kept being very positive. Oh yeah I’ll get those to ya but, he just never did," said Saathoff.
Still she hired Mireles and went forward with a full gut of that old bathroom.
"New tile, tile on the floor shower, you know the walls, a border, new vanity, new mirror, new lights just everything was gonna be new," said Saathoff.
The work began and progressed until they got to the shower.
"They were just saying that because of the way that the pipes were originally put in, it was just very difficult to put in the other pipes to go to the second shower head," said Saathoff.
Saathoff says her contractor needed more money to get a plumber to come up and deal with the tough job.
She paid it, but the shower never got completed and Saathoff says her calls stopped being returned.
Saathoff paid $5190 of the total $6300 bill for the job.
Her contract says the job would take just twelve days to finish and she’s entitled to a 10 percent discount for every day the contract isn’t completed. If honored, that deal would make her job free, if only she could get ahold of Mireles.
Mireles’ company’s website has since gone dark. We found a handful of reviews for the company online.
Three people reported similar issues as Saathoff. NBC 5 Responds called and emailed Mireles and his son Adam who was supposed to be a project manager, leaving messages for several weeks without a call back.
We never reached either of them.
"This was my dream. My dream was to have a nice master bathroom and you know what lady doesn’t dream of that," said Saathoff.
Saathoff's major mistake was that while she asked for references, she never actually got them.
She let the work move forward without actually making the phone calls to talk to people who did business with Mireles, make sure they’re real customers, and see the quality of work they received.
NBC 5 Responds suggest, don’t just take someone’s word or look at a bunch of photos of work they said they completed. Talk to previous customers, ask to see the work, make sure they’re not friends and family. Check out everything before you hand over several thousand dollars.