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Old 01-23-2006, 04:44 AM   #1
vicki188
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Maybe someone out there can give me some advice? My problem is that as a single mom, I've been ripped off by people who are friends of friends who I have hired to do work for me around my house. One guy is actually my friends father whom she recommended to me....well, guess what? He took my money, did a terrible job on my bathroom tiles and left the state. Of course I would never judge my friend for this, I just wonder, how can I keep this from happening?

Another case where I needed a fuel tank hooked up to my furnace...my sons and I put it inside the basement ourselves, all this plumber/heater guy was supposed to do is hook it up...well he quoted me between $200-$250 for the job. Guess what, when I got the bill it was $500! I was devastated because there went my Christmas bonus which was going to go on fuel! Not to mention that I had to get HEAP just to stay warm and keep the pipes in the house from freezing. I HATE getting help from anyone especially the state, so now, not only am I in even deeper debt, but I am also humiliated and broke. This guy also told me that I need a new furnace and this will be $2800.00. Does this sound legit? I'm so afraid of getting ripped off again. This guy knows he is the only one that I can ask for help because nobody else will let me make payments, but he does. Some input would be very very very appreciated. Thanks in advanace!
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Old 01-23-2006, 07:11 AM   #2
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Jeez...sounds like you need to start asking this guy for his quotes in writing.

$2800 isn't outrageous for a boiler, but that doesn't mean you need one. What did he say was wrong with the old boiler?
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Old 01-23-2006, 12:09 PM   #3
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i would definitely suggest getting at least 2 more opinions before you move on this. it's not that outrageously priced. however, you need to make sure you actually NEED a new one. i would also ask why he quoted you at one price and then charged you double.
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Old 01-23-2006, 12:20 PM   #4
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See my sig line...it also applies to service quotes.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:46 PM   #5
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What he said was there are actually cracks inside and outside of the furnace itself. Right now the carbon monoxide detector is at zero, but who knows how long we'll be lucky. He actually showed me the cracks, Big Bobby. Thanks Caitlin's mommy, I am going to get a few more quotes before I go with this guy again. The catch is he said he'll let me make payments. Yes, Jaydsdad, I will definitely ask for written estimates from now on. Thing is, when I asked him why it was more, he said that it took longer then he thought, so that was his reason. As far as getting a written estimate for the furnace, he quoted $2800.00 and said that includes installation so I don't need one. Weird,huh?
Thanks for your responses guys, very much appreciated!
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Old 01-24-2006, 06:20 AM   #6
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hmm, seems you should ask paul/phoenix. He does heating and air, that does sound high depending on what type of furnace.
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Old 01-24-2006, 08:22 AM   #7
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Heh, well to give you some perspective, I've never had an oil guy see my boilers and *not* tell me that they need replacing. Yet here it is 5 years later, and they still seem to be doing the job of keeping my house warm. One of them is almost 100 years old too, having previously been a coal burner before it was converted to oil.

Honestly? I'd go to the Home Depot and get a tub of furnace cement for $5. It's a goo that you smear on the cracks on the boiler, and it gets hard as it gets heated up. Put that on the visible cracks, keep an eye on your CO meter (good idea BTW), and then forget about your oil guy. No written estimate for a $2800 job? That's absolutely ridiculous...

Do you have enough equity in your home to open a line of credit? People will warn you about the dangers of using the equity in your house, but if you keep it for emergencies then it will enable you to deal with *any* contractor; not just the ones that accept payments.

Anyway...hope that helped...

Which part of NY are you in BTW?

Later,
Bobby

PS to Paul(s) - They need heat in Phoenix?
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Old 01-24-2006, 11:01 PM   #8
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Thanks for your input Big Bobby. It's appreciated. I think you're right, it doesn't sound too legit when they can't give a written estimate. Thanks a lot for your advice...I think I will try that stuff from Home Depot...certainly can't hurt! BTW...I'm in the Catskill area in NY...the cold mountain area...yuk!
Thanks again and be well.
Vicki
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Old 01-25-2006, 04:08 AM   #9
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Heh...you're putting it nicely...it's BS when they can't provide a written estimate Really...is he trying to save paper or something? Nuts...especially when he has a history of quoting you one price and then charging you double...

Catskills...when I was married we used to visit my ex's family in the Accord/Ellenville area several times a year...we'd only go in the Summer, but I understand it is a cold place...

Anyway...I hope it works out for you...good luck...
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