Avon Lake Contractor Took Deposits But Didn’t Do Work

tree 150x150 Avon Lake Contractor Took Deposits But Didn’t Do WorkConsumer complaints piling up at Better Business Bureau Serving Greater Cleveland paint a similar picture about an Avon Lake contractor.  According to complainants, All American Restoration canvassed neighborhoods in Avon Lake and surrounding communities following storms last year.  The business offered to handle repairs which were to be paid for by insurance claims.

Several homeowners have told BBB that, after turning over insurance checks in amounts varying from $3,000 to $10,000, the company did not return to begin repairs.  An Elyria man who paid a $6,500 deposit last October told BBB, “No work has been done. I have made repeated calls to their offices and the owner’s cell phone..with no returned calls. I tried to stop by their office and it is no longer there.”

An Avon woman contacted BBB in April, 2013, to report she had given All American $10,000 last October and never saw the company again. She decided to take the matter to court.

Another Avon couple gave All American a check for $9,700 in October, 2012 and months later had nothing to show for it except a tarp on their roof.

All American Restoration first came to BBB’s attention in 2011 and is owned by Mark Walker. The business has an “F” rating with BBB due to unresolved, unanswered and serious complaints.

Mr. Walker recently told BBB that he was in a “…cash flow crisis..” due to not receiving payment for a large commercial job and other work totalling $40,000.  Walker further stated,  “I will get these roofs on no matter what it takes! Even if it means looking into other markets to generate revenue.”

BBB is referring consumers to Ohio Attorney General and local law enforcement for further assistance.

BBB advises homeowners to carefully research contractors who canvas neighborhoods following a storm.

Your BBB offers the following tips for storm victims:

  • Immediately contact your insurance carrier if you believe your property has been damaged.

  • Do not allow a contractor to inspect your property when you are not home.

  • Do not give a contractor Power of Attorney or permit them to negotiate or settle your insurance claim.

  • Do not pay in full or sign a completion certificate until the work is finished.

  • Many municipalities require a solicitation permit if sales people go door-to-door.  Verify that they need to have a permit by contacting your local Township or Municipality. BBB suggests consumers be pro-active in selecting a contractor and not re-active to sales calls on the phone or door-to-door pitches.

  • While most roofing contractors abide by the law, be careful allowing someone you do not know inspect your roof. An unethical contractor may actually create damage to get work.

  • Try to get at least 3-4 quotes from contractors, and insist that payments be made to the company, not an individual.

  • Do not pay for the job in advance. Be wary of any contractor who demands full or half payment upfront.

  • Resist high-pressure sales tactics such as the “good deal” you’ll get only if you hire the contractor on the spot.

  • Get a written contract that specifies the price, the work to be done, the amount of liability insurance coverage maintained by the contractor, and a time frame for completion. Require a copy of their current certificate of insurance.

  • Pay by credit card, if possible; you may have additional protection if there’s a problem.

  • Check that the contractor’s vehicle has signs or markings on it with the business name, phone number and license plates for your state.

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About Sue McConnell

Sue is the senior vice president of BBB Serving Greater Cleveland. She began her BBB career in 1980 and has served on various national BBB committees. Sue has conducted peer trainings locally, regionally, and nationally and represents BBB in local print and broadcast media.