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BBB official: Always get it in writing, protecting both contractor, customer

Published: Dec. 29, 2021 at 7:14 PM CST
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - One woman just wanted a pool in her backyard. But it never happened and now she’s out of several hundred dollars.

”We just would like our money back.”

Heather Smith wanted to put an above ground pool in her backyard for her daughter to enjoy this past summer.

“I reached out on Facebook and found someone.”

After meeting with the contractor, she agreed to give him money for a down payment.

“$600. He came and looked at the yard and what he needed to do and he said he would be back the next day to bring some sand to get the ground level.”

But Heather says the contractor never did any work. So she ended up borrowing a pool from her father.

As for the $600?

”I just asked for my money back...it’s been three months and they refused to return it. Then I filed a report with Venmo, that’s how I paid them and then I filed a report with the small claims court.”

6 News spoke with the contractor who says he did accept money from Heather but didn’t do any work because she was supposed to clear the yard and get permits.

He also says there was no written contract.

”I always impress upon people to get everything in writing ahead of time so that way it’s not just here’s a sum and here’s what you are paying...you need to know what your into before you get into it,” said Josh Planos.

Josh Planos with the Better Business Bureau says getting terms in writing protects both the contractor and customer.

“It doesn’t matter how much money it is. You should always have everything itemized and listed in full detail so that you know what the terms and conditions that you’re signing up for is.”

After a call from 6 On Your Side, the contractor says he plans to refund Heather’s $600.

Heather Smith admits she didn’t do her research ahead of time before selecting a contractor.

Josh Planos with the Better Business Bureau always advises checking with the BBB website to help reduce the chance of problems developing.

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