Friday, July 01, 2005

Why I learned to use my own power tools II

Continuing the woeful tale of a friend, a house, and state-government-approved building repair contractors

When she first signed the loan papers to start her home-repair projects, Hedda asked if she might see some of the finished work by a few of the contractors on the "approved" list, contractors who had worked for WIRC in the past. One of those finished projects was the home of Cricket, a friend of hers (not too surprising -- this is a fairly small town), so she got permission to inspect the handiwork and hear what Cricket had to say about the experience.

Hedda was not impressed.

She asked around, and heard great praise for one contractor, in particular. James Crosby,* referred by several local familes, had done a brilliant, conscientious job removing my parents' old kitchen flooring and laying in new laminate, and he had -- in my estimation -- undercharged them for his skills. Of course, a man like that is always busy, so Hedda had to settle for another. She returned to the list given her by the WIRC office. It seemed rather odd to her that none of the local contractors were available. One person explained that the Monmouth and Galesburg contractors were too busy on new building projects, and, besides, few of them were certified for lead paint removal.

This should have been a warning to her.

* I have no qualms about publishing his real name. He is an excellent example of what a contractor or any other professional should be.

First installment

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