My contractor did a terrible tile job, and it needs to be re-done. We are going to have to do new cement board and hire a new tile professional. It's an 120 year old home, and he confirmed that he was comfortable doing the work even though it's more difficult. Since he wasted $1500 of materials, is it acceptable to ask for a credit for materials and to not pay for the day of tiling? I want to be fair and not rip him off, but also don't want to be ripped off.
Thanks in advance.
One thing I've learned in hiring 'trades' is that pretty much everyone is extremely defensive about their work, nobody will admit or take any responsibility even if they have made a blatant mistake so I usually look for any way to blame myself: it was my mistake to hire him, didn't check out his past work, references, unclear instructions, supervision, etc.
A very similar thing recently happened to me however my loss of materials wasn't near as bad; I caught him before he got past the half way mark. We amicably agreed and parted ways (I paid him $50); of course the value of the work was WAY less than zero with an enormous waste of time and materials to redo the job (myself).
You haven't said whose idea it was to have this narrow, long profile tile running vertically; whoever's idea it was mistake #1.
I suggest you consider doing a very precise CAD drawing taking into account all the inaccuracies in the walls to see how everything comes together when preparing for the rebuild just so history doesn't repeat.
Probably a much larger format tile run horizontally (perhaps a brick pattern) would be best. Obviously this old house isn't going to have a straight line to work with.
Shane, That is a tough situation. By law, you are obligated to pay the contractor, but I would suggest a compromise. Tell him you'll pay a fair amount (perhaps half) with the assurance that you won't contact the Better Business Bureau or mention him/her to anybody else (negative or positive). This gives him and you an "out". If you go more aggressive, you may be talking law suits that don't end well for either party. Good luck.
Just thought I'd show you photos of my nightmare so you can see the comparison. Tiles were randomly alternated into the corner resulting in a misalignment of vertical grout-lines on all 3 walls resulting in approximately 2/3 of the tiles being incorrect. This could be a deal-breaker when it comes time to sell the house so it had to be corrected even though it was only aesthetic.
In preparing to redo the work myself I found a very educational tile installation video on YouTube; first thing mentioned is to start on the back wall running all the tiles into the corner for best appearance, keeping the corner grout line on the 2 flanking walls.
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