Paying for a job that is unfinished

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Posted by: from Barrie
2/7/2017 at 10:10:00 AM

We hired a contractor to complete a small bathroom and he only completed the job. He then had to be at another job so he packed up and left. The bathroom is still not completed and he is asking for payment but he's not prepared to finish the work. We have had to hire another guy to complete it but he's not available until the end of the month.

Should I be paying for the work that was completed so far?

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Date/Time2/7/2017 at 11:06:32 AM

Depends what was agreed on in the contract if the payment was to be paid after 100% of the work was completed. I wouldn't pay anything unless it's to your expectations and completely finished. That's coming from a contractor.

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Date/Time2/7/2017 at 11:07:23 AM

Short answer is no. Pay for the work done only. If he complains, gather the facts and tell him to take it to court if he chooses, he will not win. Sorry to hear about this ... again and again.

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Date/Time2/7/2017 at 11:11:45 AM

Hello Erika,

I'm sorry to hear about your circumstance.

Perhaps the most important step in initiating a project with a contractor is the contract that both parties agree to and sign. The more detailed the contract, the better. Go over it carefully as it will answer questions regarding what to expect and when.

For instance, our contracts detail the scope of work involved and their associated costs. We also include a payment schedule as well as a cancellation policy among other things.

Contracts are meant to get everyone on the same page. I think you'll find that most TrustedPros contractors make great use of contracts.

If no contract has been signed then unfortunately anything can happen. The best thing you can do is approach this contractor and try to settle the dispute as best as possible.

Good luck.

Henry Kirsch

Kirsch Electric Contracting Inc.

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Erika in Barrie
Date/Time2/7/2017 at 11:17:42 AM

Thanks for the feedback. There was no contract or even talk of one, we just agreed on an hourly rate. It was estimated the job would only take 2 to 4 days.

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Date/Time2/7/2017 at 11:30:46 AM

Hi Erica,

This is Jeff Shea All-In Renovations Calgary Alberta. I would suggest you have the other company finish your bathroom complete. Then you know how much it's going to cost and you can deduct that from the original contract of the first company who never did complete it. However it would be nice to pay the first contractor some of his wages just make sure you don't overpay him until you are completed.

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Date/Time2/7/2017 at 11:45:31 AM


For the love of God....... DON'T ever pay for what has not been done. For putting you in a situation like that, you should ask for your money back and FIRE his butt.....

It's because of those CRAPPY Contractors that makes the good ones look bad.

Hope this helps.


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Date/Time2/7/2017 at 1:56:18 PM

I always suggest paying him for what he has completed as long as it was completed properly and the new contractor does not have to fix anything and as long as there is no additional cost over from the new contractor.

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Date/Time2/7/2017 at 3:45:51 PM

Unfortunately if you agreed to pay him hourly (unless he is operating as an incorporated company) then you must pay him whatever rate was agreed for the hours he worked weather the job was finished or not. He could even go after you for EI & CPP. You are essentially his employer and should be holding back all deductions and paying them to the government.

Sadly, if he is not an incorporated company you have taken on a HUGE responsibility legally.

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Date/Time2/8/2017 at 7:57:16 AM

Pay for only what has been completed. If you have a written Estimate from him to complete the job, detailing everything that is involved to complete it, than your in your right to hold back X amount until the job is

complete. If your paying someone else to complete the job. Take pictures NOW as the state it is in so the first guy can see that he screwed up.

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Date/Time2/8/2017 at 11:29:14 PM

Pay only for the work done and do not pay if he did not complete the job and doesn't intend to finish the job.

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Date/Time2/10/2017 at 11:45:55 AM

Hold everything until the job is completed . Then and only then everyone step back and make a fair decision concerning who gets what.

Yours truly and respectively,


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