Better Business Bureau

Pool Contractor Gets Majority of Payment Up Front, Doesn't Complete Job

NBC 5 Responds recommends paying for as much of a job as possible after all work is finished

Kirk Hardwick is remodeling his home and wanted to redo the backyard.

Last year he hired Ryan Gaston of DeckScapes to replace the concrete around his pool for $12,400.

Most of the job was done, but Hardwick said the crew drained his pool to get the work done and used it as a trash can to collect the old material they dug up.

They left chunks of concrete and other material in the pool.

There are little drops of concrete on the pool floor making it uneven. They are all things Hardwick said Ryan promised he would make right on the final walk through.

"We were going to meet, go through a couple checklist, punch list items and I haven't heard from him," Hardwick said.

Hardwick paid for the whole job, minus a final $500. But he said the repair work that needs to be done is much more than that amount.

"I've texted him, emailed him, I've got his business email," Hardwick said.

He called NBC 5 Responds and we found he wasn't alone.

Gaston owned two other companies, Gaston Concrete and Classy Crete.

Classy Crete has a D- from the Better Business Bureau and both businesses have reviews that sounded familiar.

One woman wrote, "There were large splashes of concrete on the brick."

She also said, "We have numerous cracks in the patio," and "the owner has refused to answer my calls, texts and emails."

We called Gaston about Mr. Hardwick's yard and he apologized saying he was working offshore on oil rigs and would make it right.

He came back, promised to finish the job and set a date to do it.

But the date came and went and further calls from us and Mr. Hardwick have been ignored for weeks.

Summer has come around again and Hardwick has no usable pool.

"I don't want any retribution or anything above and beyond, I just want it finished," Hardwick said.

We often hear complaints involving contractors where most of the money is paid before the job is completed and the contractor doesn't show up for the last little bit.

When signing contracts, pay close attention to the pay structure and try to pay for as much of the job as possible after all the work is completed.

Hardwick got recommendations from a friend about Gaston's company. He didn't take the time to research himself. A simple Google search would have turned up reviews, which may have given him second thoughts.

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