Merchant gave me wrong information and created additional problems.
I had a problem with birds in two of my vents. I have five on the side of my house, one is a dryer vent and the rest are exhaust. Birds were in my bathroom and I knew where the vent was outside, let's call it #5. The other I knew the room but not which vent on the exterior of the house. I got in contact with Paul and he came to give an estimate. Before he came I was interested in getting my dryer vent cleaned out as well as the exhaust vents. He told me the cost for the dryer vent and I knew I could get a better price. He also sent me pricing for a/c vent cleaning. I told him I ONLY needed the exhaust vents looked at. He came out to do the estimate while I wasn't home, my mother was here with my sick kids because I had to be in court for child support and visitation modification. During the estimate he broke off the dryer vent cover which additionally, had mesh to keep birds out and I didn't need him looking in anyhow. The original estimate was for 4 vents, when I only needed two cleaned. I just wasn't sure which two, among other things I didn't want done. On the day of cleaning the worker shows up and we are waiting on Paul. He finally shows up late and with the wrong parts. He tells me birds can't get in my bathroom vent, #5, so I am now doubting what I know about the location of the birds and nests so I have him clean the other three exhaust vents, not thinking about the fact that he should know what its going on and where the nests are. He tells me since I have someone coming to clean the dryer vent later he wont install the vent cover over the dryer vent and I should have the dryer guy install it. Keep in mind he broke it off. Paul has me sign a paper that is not accurate of the work we agreed upon and says he just needs it to get started on the work. I said you cant just change those numbers real quick? He pressured me to sign. All of this made me doubt his character, but i figured he wasn't the one doing the work and this isn't a friendship. He then had to leave to get the proper parts and once again the worker and I were waiting on him. By this point I have to leave. So I gave the credit card to my neighbor and told her the amount to sign for and expressed my concerns to her. He later texts me with a picture and tells me I have to get up there and take off the neon colored tape after 24 hours. If I could get up there, I wouldn't have contacted them in the first place. I have a large ladder on the side of my house that was used by them during the estimate and work. This ladder is not mine and he helped himself to it without my knowledge which was unprofessional at best. The evening the work was done by TLC my next door neighbor called me and said she saw birds flying in and out of one of my vents, #5, the one he said birds couldn't get in! I'm not debating that work was done, it was...I assume. Just not what I called him for. And in the process created a problem I didn't have before and made no attempt to fix it. When the dryer guy came he cleaned from the inside and because Paul broke off my dryer vent cover on the exterior the birds continued to build. I had to have it cleaned out again when the last two vent covers were installed as well as have vent #5 cleaned.
So in short, what I called TLC for and needed done was not completed and another problem was created. I did make contact in hopes it could be resolved and he wanted me to pay him again. I think that is the goal of this struggling company to create more work and trap the consumer.
I would like a refund. The company did not do the work I needed and wanted and would pay to have done, yet charged me for work I didn't need done. In addition, created a situation I needed to have handled and pay for again because of their carelessness.
I'd like to start by saying I didn't give the customer "wrong information". I gave her a "quote" to fix her problem. I think she did have birds getting in. I believed her when she said she could hear them inside. However, there was no evidence of nesting. We clean a lot of dryer vents do to lint build-up and bird nests. There was no "visible evidence" of bird activity. That means usually you can see grass on the opening (from the nest they build) on the side of the house or feathers that catch on the brick as they go in and out or bird droppings on the side of the house. She had none of that.
But, before I go much further into my side of the story, I want to make clear that the first thing she did was get the charge on her credit card reversed. The bank did a "charge-back" and then did the same thing the BBB did and asked me for my side of the story. I sent them our email conversations and estimate sheets, and copies of the signed invoices that I sent to the customer, and needless to say, they returned the funds back to us. I guess she was unhappy with having to pay for the work so that prompted her to contact the BBB. I will forward my response to the bank along with this response.
So to continue, she accused me of creating additional problems. That is not true. She also said I broke the cover off the side of the house. That is also not true. She said I was unprofessional for using her ladder. Also not true. Let's take them one at a time: 1) Because there was no "visible evidence" of bird activity the smartest way to handle her issue would've been to remove all the covers, clean the vents and recover the openings w/better, longer lasting covers. She did not want to spend the money that it would've taken to do the job correctly. You will see that once you see the original estimate that I sent over and the revised one after she tweaked it. 2) The cover that she said I broke was the original cover that was on the house when it was built. It was old, sun faded and very brittle from the Texas heat. I had to remove it so I could look inside the dryer vent for bird activity. There were 2-screws holding it on. 1-wasn't even attached to the house and the other one (the only one that was holding the cover on) broke off because the tab that the screw went through was very brittle and broke. I did inform her mother that I tried to put it back as best I could but that it probably wouldn't stay. However, that was really a non issue because the dryer vent was supposed to get cleaned and that cover should've been replaced anyway. 3) Long before I came out there I asked her if there was a ladder on site that I could use if I needed one. I always ask my customers if they have a ladder that I can borrow. It didn't make sense for me to load a ladder onto my truck, tie it down, and haul it all the way from Lewisville to Ft Worth if there is one already there. She said there was and she did give me permission to use it. It was laying down on the side of the house right under the vents we are discussing. By the way there are many jobs that we do where I will haul a ladder.
Part of the problem we had was that she couldn't be there while the work was being done. The day I came out to do the estimate, she wasn't there and I dealt with her mom in her absence. Then the day we came out to do the work, she had to leave before we were done, and I had to go next door to get paid. And I didn't show up late. Our arrival times are always 2-hour windows. Hers was between 11 am and 1 pm. My tech showed up around 11 and a little before I did but I was still well within our arrival time. And I did have the wrong size covers, but that was because I didn't know they made different sizes, so I bought the ones they had. I didn't want to do a lousy job and put the wrong ones on, so I had to go to the nearest Home Depot for new ones. Those things happen sometimes.
I originally quoted her 150.00 to clean out the dryer vent but she wanted to use a Groupon instead and get some other company to do it for $50.00. But he didn't clean it the way we would have. I clean them from both inside and outside. Then cover the opening if the customer wants to pay for a new cover. She was upset with me for not covering the dryer vent but she wasn't paying me to do anything with the dryer vent. She said she hired another company to take care of the dryer vent. She only wanted us to clean the 4-exhaust vents. And when all was said and done, after we arrived, she changed her mind again and only wanted us to concentrate on 3-of the exhaust vents. If you ask her, and she's honest with you she will tell you that she isn't having ANY issues with the 3-vents that I cleaned and covered. The vent she's having issues with is the dryer vent (that I didn't do anything with). Further, I assumed that the other company would do a more thorough job and that's why I told her I could leave the cover for him to put on because it didn't make sense to cover it if he was going to clean it a day or two later. What if he had to clean it from the outside, and couldn't get to it because now it was covered. That was my thinking behind that. Then she wanted me to drive all the way back to Ft Worth to put a cover on that she didn't want to pay for in the first place and should have been done by the other company while they were there. Again, I stress that I had nothing to do with the dryer vent. So, I simply told her I wasn't going to do that for her for free. I already offered to leave her a cover that they could have installed. But again, most companies don't do things the way we do. When all you want to pay is $50.00, you get a $50.00 job. And I told her that.
I didn't pressure her to sign my paperwork. She needed to leave and we needed to start. She changed what she wanted done "again" after we arrived. I gave her a verbal, revised price for the 3-vents and told her I'd revise the invoice and charge her what we agreed on. She really had no reason not to "trust" me or TLC because the reason I was there in the first place was because her neighbor across the street (D'Wayne) works for our company and referred me to her. So there was no reason for me to be dishonest in any way, shape or form.
Lastly, she mentioned that I left tape on the side of her house. That is part of the job. The tape she's talking about is used to hold the bird cover in place while the caulk is curing. Without the tape, gravity would pull it down and out of place. I never drive back to a job to remove it. I have a couple of times for elderly folks that aren't capable, but only if they are in our area. Please remember 3-things. 1-she's an hour away, 2-she was plenty capable and 3-her friend/neighbor, who works for us lives across the street and would have been more than happy to do it for her if she needed him to. Thank you for taking the time to read this.
(The consumer indicated he/she DID NOT accept the response from the business.)
I have already plead my case, I have nothing to add except that most of his information is not accurate, but that was to be expected.