ELYRIA, OH – November 14, 2013 – (RealEstateRama) — Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine today announced lawsuits against two Northeast Ohio home improvement contractors. The lawsuits accuse Mark Walker of Avon, and his business, All American Restoration, and Wayne Given of Silver Lake, doing business as Basement Waterproofing Solutions, of failure to deliver and performing shoddy work.
“When consumers pay thousands of dollars for home improvement services they never receive as promised, there’s a problem,” Attorney General DeWine said. “We are committed to enforcing Ohio’s consumer protection laws and holding violators accountable.”
Mark Walker operated All American Restoration LLC at 33501 Lake Road in Avon Lake, Ohio. The business offered major home improvement services, including room additions and roofing projects, but consumers complained that the business failed to deliver. In 28 complaints, reported losses totaled $135,000.
Wayne Given operated Basement Waterproofing Solutions from his home in Silver Lake, Ohio, offering basement waterproofing services. Consumers complained that the business failed to deliver or did shoddy work. Reported losses totaled approximately $12,900 for three consumer complaints.
The lawsuits charge the businesses with violating Ohio’s Consumer Sales Practices Act. Counts include failure to deliver and performing substandard work. In both lawsuits, Attorney General DeWine is seeking restitution for consumers, injunctions to stop the businesses from further violations, civil penalties, and other costs.
Consumers should take the following steps to protect themselves in a home improvement transaction:
Get at least three written estimates from different contractors before selecting a contractor.
Ask the contractor to provide references of past customers, and check the references.
Make sure the contractor has the proper permits to perform the work.
Ask the contractor to show proof of licenses, insurance, and bonding. State law does not require home improvement contractors to be licensed, but many Ohio cities do.
Check with the Ohio Attorney General’s Office and the Better Business Bureau to determine if complaints are on file against the company.
Get everything in writing, including any verbal promises.
Do not provide full payment up front. Pay when work is finished or for portions of work as they are completed, for example, one-third in the beginning, one-third in the middle, and the final third upon satisfactory completion.
Consumers who believe they have been treated unfairly should contact the Ohio Attorney General’s Office at www.OhioAttorneyGeneral.gov or 800-282-0515.
Dan Tierney: 614-466-3840
Kate Hanson: 614-466-3840