A Matter of Taste?


Our friend Amy just bought her first condo – a real fixer upper, to be sure, but with great potential!  She went out of town for the week while her contractor Joe was installing her new faux wood floor.  They had discussed what the pattern would look like before she left, and Amy couldn’t wait to get back to see the finished product.  But when she returned, something didn’t seem quite right.  The contractor  had laid the floor in one pattern in the bedroom, and a completely different one in the living room and dining room!  Amy was so disappointed and shocked that Joe changed the plan without asking her.  When she confronted him, Joe said he was running out of flooring, and that his solution saved her a couple of hundred dollar in additional materials.  He went on to say that the two different looks didn’t bother him, and it was just a matter of taste….

New to the whole home ownership thing, Amy didn’t know what to think. Was she being petty?  But her gut was telling her that Joe should have never changed the design without getting her approval, and that the problem was HIS to fix.  Joe said he would be happy to redo it — IF Amy helped him pay for the extra labor and material costs.

Amy thinks it is ridiculous that the contractor didn’t check with her first about taking artistic license with her new home, and certainly doesn’t think she should pay for the redo.  Joe the contractor thinks Amy is being overly picky and should help pay for the work since he was trying to save her money in the first place. What do you think? Should Amy shoulder any of the financial burden?  Or is her contractor completely in the wrong?

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3 Responses to “A Matter of Taste?”

  1. Condo Blues says:

    Amy is the customer and she is paying to have the job done to her specs, not Joe’s own personal taste. It doesn’t matter if Amy’s being unreasonable (she isn’t) or not, she told the contractor to do the job a certain way. He didn’t do it and he needs to fix it and shoulder the financial responsibility of not checking with his client before he changed her design.

    It looks like Joe is doing the (bad) contractor’s trick of changing the specs to fit his needs and hoping the client will live with it because the job is finished even if it isn’t the way they orginally wanted. Don’t fall for it Amy!

  2. Condo Blues says:

    Also if there is an Angie’s List or some other agency that rates contractors she should definitely report this. There are a lot of good contractors out there that would call first in this situation. This guy isn’t one of them.

  3. Lorin says:

    The contractor is wrong, but he is not the first to pull this kind of stunt. One phone call to Amy would have avoided this problem. EVERYTHING in writing and a drawing, especially when you are not there. This guy is a bad contractor.

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