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Builder left the job unfinished.

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I live in California and am in the process of having my house remodeled. Our original contract with the contractor stated he would build the addition and do the remodeling as per plans for X number of dollars. About four months into the project we did a spread sheet on our costs up to that point and found we were getting close to the total amount we had agreeded to pay the contractor. We had a conversation with the contractor, and he assured us that he could finish the remodel close to the contract amount. Two more weeks of work went by and it appeared that the remodel was along way from being done and we had already gone over the contracted amount. We again spoke with the contractor about the cost overrun. He stated that he would need more money to finish the job. We balked at this. He said that he was going to sue us for exposing him to asbestos because he had worked under our house and the old heating ducts had some asbestos tape on some of the joints. He came back the next day with a "new" contract, voiding the original contract, stating he would finish all the rest of the work in 5 weeks for an additional $5000.00. After speaking with an attorney, we decided that this was probably the easiest way to get the job finished. The 5 weeks came and went and only about 35% of the work was done. I confronted the contractor about the work not being completed. He stated that he would come back to work every day if I would agree to pay him on a weekly basis until the job was completed. I told him I wanted him to finish the job with no additional pay, to which he said that he would come back when he could fit it into his schedule. I told him I needed a schedule of when he would come back, but he said he could not give me one. He has not returned to the job and I have had an attorney write him a letter stating that he abandoned the job and we were going to finish the job our selves. We have hired other workman to finish the job. This is a mess. What are my rights? Can I sue the contractor for the expenses of finishing the job? Where do I go from here?


Senior Member
What did your attorney say to do? You have rights to take him to court and ask for reimbursement of the cost you paid to complete the project per the original plans and 2nd contract.

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