Project gone bad

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Posted by: from Mount Albert
9/21/2011 at 7:55:35 PM

Started a reno project, owner did not want to sign a contract even though one was provided, changes to work and an under estimation of time for certain items by myself have resulted in the project going sour.

The home owner has paid $18000 and by my calculations we have done + - $ 10000 worth of labour/materials. She is demanding $15000 back for us to walk from the project.

What are my options bearing in mind that the relationship has soured and I do not wish to return to the site?

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Date/Time10/7/2011 at 2:04:25 PM

Hi Steve,

First off, a verbal agreement is a binding agreement. If you have a record of the hours you worked and receipts for the materials, then add them together and give her whatever the amount is that might be owing to her.

You should also do as the previous post states and send an e-mail to her offering to complete the job for full payment. Ask for an e-mail reply so you have a record of this.

Not kowing the situation, I am not sure why you are at this point.

Is it her fault or yours?

Why has she paid $18,000 if you have only completed $10,000 worth of work?

I have been through renos that have turned sour, and I always tell any of my potential clients that I have to have a signed contract before I begin.

I am sure after this headache, you'll feel the same way.

Bill Clawsie

Clawsie Contracting


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Mr in Vancouver
Date/Time3/27/2012 at 3:19:10 PM

Hi There,

I had a similar problem and am fighting this in court-

My contractor was Cook Cousins Renovations and Restorations- Chris Cook from Langley/ Vancouver

Plain and simple. These guys are crooks!

We interviewed a bunch of contractors for our renovation. We went with Cook Cousins because they gave the best deal. We wanted to dormer out upstairs and add a bathroom. The range they gave us was 30-50K. 50K tops. They finished the renovation 6 months late and charged us $77,000.

Over and above the really poor service and charging us double the estimate, they also didn't pay their subcontractors and they put a Lien on our house from the insulation company that he used because he didn't pay them. Note that we paid Chris Cook the full amount we agreed to on time.

We had to deal with lawyers to remove the Lien. Major pain! DO NOT hire Cook Cousins Renovations/ Chris Cook for anything. They are crooks.

Our Lawyers have proven that the "hand shake" agreement was a binding contract.

Hope this helps.

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Brandon in Vancouver
Date/Time11/10/2014 at 8:29:29 PM

I feel a little responsible for the last comment as I provided the reference but I can tell you Chris has done 3 jobs for me larger than the one Jamie is describing and has always been honest and reliable and in fact has saved me cost on each project due to good advice and contacts in the industry.

I know there was scope creep in this project and if you increase the size of the project the cost will inevitably grow as well.

This review of Cook Cousins and Chris in general is simply inaccurate and I would provide another reference for him anytime.

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Frank in Vancouver
Date/Time12/2/2015 at 3:12:31 PM

To the guy who said don't hire cook cousins, they are crooks?

They had all kinds of obstacles and you had a baby on the way and they did a major third floor reno for you within a very short time hand you neglected to mention all the upgrades you made!!

they are not crooks, they do many homes a year and have many happy customers.

Then you sold the house just so you could make a buck. I did the drawings for this reno and you gave them a real hard time but i know they are fair.

They lost $20 or $30000 from dealing with you.

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