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Educating the client is huge, managing expectations...if they can't take your advice, or have a good reason to do it an alternative way that you're not comfortable with, then it's over... Unfortunately every once in awhile we all need to get re-schooled...sounds like it's best to walk...

I have a buddy I was working with. He hired me to take care of the tech stuff for his client while they were doing some other electrical items on his occupied town house.
The owner did not, could not understand any reasoning when it came to routing of the tech cables. And every hour was changing the final locations....
After a day of this and it was a non working weekend, we were to return on Monday.

My buddy calls me asks me if I have anything at Mr B.s. I replied just a few snakes, misc cable and hardware. He replied, Good, we're not going back, I'll pay you for your time and materials, but He couldn't take the guy anymore...he told him to find someone else.

He woke up in the middle of the night with panic attacks thinking about going back.

Worst client he had in thirty years...he had been doing things for him for a couple of years. Electrical for bathroom s and kitchens. But this on put him over the edge.... We still laugh about it today.. especially when we get this guy's post card mailer for new roofs.
 
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I’ve dealt with some grumpy cheapskates before but texting me at 5am to say they didn’t like my work, wouldn’t pay any more and my tools are on the front step was a new one for me.

I understand somewhat why they’re angry (and I should never have agreed to the last change of plan) but I explained to them in great detail via email and with in person demonstrations the downsides of trying to save the doors that were installed incorrectly by the last contractor and I thought they got it. Really I think I did pretty well getting the doors functioning but there’s only so much I can do when the mortise depths are all over the map, the Lowe’s particle jambs are dissolving as I work with them and the customer expects the gaps around the door to have less than 1/32 variation throughout.

Fortunately I was a little wary of this customer from the beginning, only agreed to four doors to start (and not re trimming and painting the entire house), got a proper contract signed and initialed and a full 50 percent up front so I’m eating less than $400 which is a pretty gentle lesson as far as the contractor school of hard knocks goes but still..
Damn, you got some weird customer. But the good thing is you don't have to deal with them any longer, for more problems 🤔
 

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You owe me a nickel. It has changed, much for the worse. You're only arrested in California if you steal more than $950.00 worth of stuff.
And if I was in SF I would pay the TRIAD protection money and that would not be an issue any more. IF the Police and government will not protect the public and business, the MOB will. Too many SF businesses dying because this STUPID idea. It is going to have to be like Chicago 100 years ago in order to work.
In Los Gatos before that law change (about 2.5 years ago) I had the company van broken into. I had over 1000 in brand new tools (one day old) stolen. The police took a report and didn't even fingerprint the van. I told the LG police that if I caught anyone breaking into the Van I won't bother calling them. I would call the coroner instead. They damn near wanted to lock me up right then.
I told them that the property taxes on three or four houses pays their wage, and they need to do their job making arrests and protecting property. Average property value is about 3 million or more there..taxes are 13 mil rate. that would be 100Kish taxes in 3 homes. Police are worthless in CA.
 

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Discussion Starter · #55 ·
I appreciate the advice and encouragement everyone, it carries a little more weight coming from this crowd.

I was angry about them putting my tools out like that but also very relieved I didn’t have to go back to that job and I did know it was a higher risk job when I took it. It really helps me appreciate the customer on the other job I just finished, thrilled with how everything looked and how easy I was to work with, if I asked for a draw he had it the next morning etc.

It looks like it could be tricky to lien even if I wanted to take the time, my contracts may be missing a few Minnesota specific clauses and I haven’t found a good attorney yet, (I really need to get going on that). After the contract lapses I might still call a couple more times, maybe even show up at her office since it’s a couple blocks from my house, but I’m not really expecting to get paid.

I will have to think more about leaving tools, especially now that I’m doing more trim work again, a few brushes and roller poles and hand tools were never a huge risk but the saws and nail guns are a whole different thing. I’ve been moving more stuff into systainers to speed up loading and unloading but it’s still usually a good half hour on each end of the day and I don’t have a helper or anything.
 

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I've told the story if HS kids stealing beer at a gas station, having the surveillance tape, license plate, witnesses, and no response.
This is my thread. It happened past year. My car is from camera 20 yards and camera look directly into it. We called police and police promise to check video. Guess what, two weeks later I talked with landlord and police never call security company to check video. 5 cars have cat off..
 
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