We purchased a building kit from Universal steel. There are multiple issues that we have had with this company on various levels but there are several issues we have had with the building itself. The building they sent us shows multiple issues with severe rust on the steel beams. They shorted us screws for the building which we had to purchase separately, they have refused to reimburse us for these even after sending a receipt. They also required us to pay for a redraw of plan drawings and additional materials to install after the initial contract because the building appeared to be larger than what was ordered. We paid the redraw fees and for the additional materials they said we needed. After we had our contractor start installing the structure it was found that the redraw and additional materials were unnecessary. Their constant delays in response and their attitude once they had received payment are unacceptable. We paid them for all the building materials prior to our building being put up and once they received payment they left us holding the bag. Their delays caused us to lose additional business as we didn't have the space available for customers. They basically have sold us a bill of goods and refuse to honor commitments that were made.
Product_Or_Service: STEEL BUILDING
We want a refund for the screws that we were shorted, the redraw fees,the additional material fees that we were charged and loss of revenue for warehouse business due to their delays. We also want compensation for the additional cost we will incur having the steel beams painted with a rust resistant paint by a paint crew to deal with the extreme rust that is on the beams.
First we would like to extend our apologies to Ms. **** for any misunderstanding. That being said, the steel building delivered November, 2014 and it is our understanding they did not begin erection until February, 2015. The steel beams with rust are a direct result of being left stacked on top of one another and being left in the outdoor winter elements. Customers have 30 days from the date of delivery to report any shortages. There was never any report of missing screws until we received an email with a receipt attached in March, 2015; which is well after the 30 days allotted to report any missing parts or shortages. ********* their concrete contractor was the one that said some backside wall columns would interfere with an existing building. Universal Steel was contacted because Wendell was convinced there was going to be interference with the existing building. Then we received an email from **** ****; he sent a drawing where the column interference would be. We were asked by ****** **** to have an engineering analysis done for a solution; at which time our engineers came up with the modification and necessary components based on their concerns and requests. A change order was signed to reflect this. Also, the customer changed contractor at the last minute. Universal Steel only sells steel buildings and components and therefore is not responsible for conversations and transactions between contractors and customers. Any delay regarding the claim of loss of business falls solely on the customer; as previously stated, the customer took approximately 2 - 3 months from delivery to starting erection of the building. We felt like we were at a disadvantage due to the length of time this building sat on the ground until the beginning of erection. We never heard anything from the customer until erection was complete.
(The consumer indicated he/she DID NOT accept the response from the business.)
Lies! The reason that we had a delay in construction was due to the contractor that they had sent out to do the building. If anyone ever recommends **** ***** for construction they should run away! I was told by***** ******** with Universal Steel that once erection began if we found there were shortages to let him know and they would take care of it. As soon as we were aware of the shortage I emailed him and he told me to mail a receipt for the cost of the replacement items. I did sign the change order because their engineering department told me that this was necessary for the erection of the building. I am not an engineer so I relied on their expertise in order to tell me what was needed. Once erection began it was found that the redraw and new materials were not needed which I paid an additional 4000.00 for prior to learning this. The change in contractor was because the contractor they had sent out to do the job decided he wanted to change the quoted price he had given us through Universal Steel to install the structure. He also told us he was going to further delay construction until he could get a crew together and that it would take longer than they had originally told us. He knew that we were already behind schedule and in desperate need of the warehouse space for our customers and I believe found us an easy target for up charging us on the price due to our desperation. The beams were not stored in the elements as described. They sold us a second rate building and they don't want to own up to it after they have been paid every dime and then some. Obviously this company takes care of nothing as they describe. I paid for every item as they requested and then get treated like this? Shame on all of you!
Final Business Response
Universal Steel has always provided the best quality pre-engineered buildings in the U.S. The contractor we referred for this project originally quoted a roof only structure in the Summer of 2014 when he visited their site; once client decided to enclose structure, contractor would always adjust his quote accordingly. There was a period of time before client and contractor got back together, but that period is between client and contractor. Contractor was contacted multiple times by their previous selected concrete contractor (Wendell) to assist him with his part of the project. Again, Universal Steel only sells steel buildings and components. We do on occasion refer reputable contractors which we have previously done business with but they are not nor have they ever been employed by Universal Steel. It is up to the customer to choose the contractor they prefer; therefore this issue has no bearing whatsoever on the contract and sale of the building between Ms. **** and Universal Steel. As far as Ms. **** claiming she was told to email a receipt for the cost of any shortages/replacement items; this is false. That practice is not how we operate. As we have previously stated, customers have 30 days from the date of the delivery to report any shortages or damages. The building delivered in November, 2014 and we were not notified of anything missing until March `2015. Ms. **** took it upon herself to go and buy items they claimed were short well after the allotted 30 day period to report such items and email a receipt instead of following the proper procedure we have in place for situations such as this. We would have tried to help to some degree, but well after the fact or the building has been erected is not normal or accepted. Universal Steel was given drawings and information from the ****s and their concrete contractor Wendell which resulted in the additional cost of the redraw and new materials. We relied solely on their information received from the customer and their contractors. Our engineering department only acted upon requests for modifications by Ms. ****, her husband ****, and Wendell regarding the interference with their existing structure, that is all we had to go on.
We were also specifically told the building was stored outdoors in the snow by Ms. ****'s father. He actually explained that the snow had to be cleaned off to get to it. Again, the project delivered November 18, 2014. The beams have a primer coat and are not meant to sit in any outside atmospheric conditions. Had these beams been properly stored this issue would have been avoided. They were offered a primer so they could sand and paint over the rust spots on the beams that were a direct and proximate result of their negligence of not storing the components properly, in which they declined. They chose to make changes to building, contractor and design throughout this process; we truly did our best to help them even after building was delivered. We even spoke to contractor to reduce his price as a good faith gesture, and then they chose to go with another contractor at the last minute, even after they agreed to a price with previous contractor. Unfortunately, they seem to be comfortable operating by these business practices.
Final Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she DID NOT accept the response from the business.)
Accept their resolution? There is no resolution being offered here just lies about what really happened. They got their money so they don't care about anything else. It is clear to me that Universal Steel is going to continually lie about the circumstances of our situation to absolve themselves of responsibility. Once they were paid for the building kit they have left us high and dry. Multiple statements above are plain lies and Mr. ******** and Mr. ***** know it. Statements regarding the contractor, the missing screws, the redraw, the rust on the building and offer of paint are all fabricated and just plain didn't happen as they claim. If they continue to treat customers this way they won't have any for long. It is just plain shameful. Anyone that deals with this company needs to beware. I will make sure that anyone looking for steel building knows this.