Why You Should Be Wary of Nonunion Work

Too many homeowners find themselves the victims of poor workmanship. “Worst-case scenarios” become their realities, and there’s nothing they can do but drain their hard-earned money on recovering damages that not only put them back at square one but should not have occurred in the first place.

We at Labor United think nothing is more important than giving fair, quality wages to workers and fair, quality workmanship to the jobs done. Years of experience in the industry have made us wary of the disservice and missteps nonunion workers inflict on homeowners that we take pride in actively preventing.

Your Home Takes Longer Than Needed To Build

From the time you and your contractor agree to a certain construction period, it is expected for the job to be finished within that timeframe. If your contractor is dodging questions, refusing to communicate or outright prolonging processes, it’s probably an attempt to charge you more money than they should.

Refusal To Fix Problems

Picture this: You tour a model home and are immediately sold on its upgraded features, including an ideal vent hood in the kitchen. You’re told you could have the upgrades, but you have to pay a little bit more for them. It’s a huge selling point for you, and you decide it’s worth it for your dream home. You agree and close on the house.

During the design phase, you inquire about the upgraded items and how they’re going to be incorporated into your new home. Your contractor then proceeds to tell you one by one you cannot have the upgraded items you had specifically inquired about and agreed on. His reasoning is that the design of the home can’t accommodate the hood. You logically begin to question about the vent hood model and why you weren’t informed about this before you closed. Countless different and vague excuses later, you’re ultimately told that the hood in the model was not functioning and never would function. This leaves you with months of going back & forth until you end up with an ugly, ill-fitting hood at a huge price. On top of that, when it was installed, the sides of your cabinets were destroyed and your contractor still has not followed through on the promise to repair them.

There are so many things wrong with this scenario, but namely that the contractor/building company places unjustified liability on you, the customer. Refusal to communicate and fix problems is a telltale sign that you don’t have the right people in your corner.

Shady Construction Managers

In the above scenario, it’s obvious the contractor did not have the client’s best interests at heart. Any contractor that is dishonest or attempts to use you for a quick buck is unethical. We’ve heard it all: making judgment calls without consulting the customer; quitting halfway through the job; using foul language; changing appointment schedules without advance notice; and allowing shoddy work from their employees. Refusal to rectify mistakes and/or accept responsibility is grounds for complaint and even firing.

Unnecessary Charging And Harassment

Contractors and managers that pressure you into uncomfortable financial decisions are cause for concern. Many charge and harass clientele for changes in pricing that were not previously agreed upon. They reel in people with promises of a fair payment plan only to find they charge you extra for things that are well within your contract and wouldn’t cost them any more money.

Bait and switch contract tactics also apply here. Bait and switch translates to false advertising: if the client and building company contract to build a home for $200,000, it should cost at or around that amount depending on contingencies. If the customer receives word from the building company’s sales representatives after closing saying there was an error in price and the total cost was actually $20,000 above the agreed-upon price, it is the company’s responsibility to accept liability for its own mistake. Accidents happen, but it is up to the company to compromise instead of placing the financial burden on the customer by either requiring them to pay the difference or forfeit a deposit by going to a different builder. Make sure you are clear about finances with your builder and that they accept your lender.

Hiring Improperly Trained Workers And Using Bad Materials

Taking the cheap way out is never a good idea. This applies to both labor and materials. Cutting costs by cutting qualifications off worker requirements indicates that poor work will be acceptable just as long as the job gets done. In addition, cutting corners by building with inferior, faulty materials will cause future setbacks for the homeowners. Pressed board trim, for example, is a kind of particle adhesive applied to the trim of doorways. It is not a solid product, but we continually see builders using it against homeowners’ wishes because it’s cheaper and easier. The easy way is not always the best way, which is something our craftsmen have ingrained in their ideology.