shoddy work and mechanic's liens - Posted by eric

Posted by Ed Copp (OH) on April 19, 2000 at 07:42:42:

The builder is right in this case. If the prospective purchaser cannot close then he should not have spent money on the (builders) house…ED

shoddy work and mechanic’s liens - Posted by eric

Posted by eric on April 18, 2000 at 19:16:28:

I just had some work done on a house I am getting ready to resell. Long story short, the contractor actually broke what he was working on (reglazing a fridge), and I had to replace it entirely. I tried to call them to see if they had a warranty or something, no response. I called the bank and stopped payment on the check, then called them back and told them I did that, and could they please call so we could try to work something out. I still get no call, and then today I get this quasi-legal looking thing, along with a letter, saying that if I don’t pay him all his money, plus a $25 check fee, he is going to call the sheriff, and put a lien on the house. I’m not too worried about the sheriff - I assume that unless he has a judgement, they’ll tell him to call a lawyer. However, the mechanic’s lien has me slightly concerned, only because I am getting ready to resell. My question is, can he put a lien on my house without taking me to court first? Are there special rules regarding mechanic’s liens in these types of cases? Has anyone had any similar type experiences? Of course I’m going to be consulting an attorney regardless, but I’m just wondering if anyone has any input or experience with this.

lien waivers - Posted by Anne-ND

Posted by Anne-ND on April 20, 2000 at 09:47:54:

I get my contractors (or anyone who does work on my houses) to sign a lien waiver when I pay them. That way no surprises later.


Re: shoddy work and mechanic’s liens - Posted by Lee

Posted by Lee on April 18, 2000 at 21:54:20:

Hi Eric

The work that was done… “reglazing a fridge” … as in a refrigerator?

Offer the guy the frig, at least you won’t have to pay to haul it off, worse yet, haul it off yourself.

If it’s not a refrigerator we are talking about here, we need to talk further.

As far as his taking you to court… ask him when the court date is, you’ll be be sure to see him there. But DOCUMENT EVERYTHING!

Good luck


Re: shoddy work and mechanic’s liens - Posted by eric

Posted by eric on April 18, 2000 at 22:02:09:

yes, I do mean a refrigerator. and I was pretty much going to just give it away (FREE FRIDGE! NEEDS MINOR REPAIR; YOU PICK UP!) And of course, I will see him in court, if it goes that far - because if I pay him, then I’m out the repair, plus the replacement, so it’s basically double the cost. But my question still is this: can he actually put a mechanic’s lien on my house without taking me to court - or is this just a bluff?

Re: shoddy work and mechanic’s liens - Posted by Tony Cribbs

Posted by Tony Cribbs on April 19, 2000 at 22:42:14:

I’m a roofing contractor and yes he can put a lien on your property but what u can do is go down to the title office and put what they call a lien bond on it basically the same cost of the lien amount then that will clear the deed then when it goes to court and you prove that it was shoddy work,make sure u have pictures of work and u might even want to get another reglazer out there so u have a expert witness backing up ur view of the situation. Hope that helps


Re: shoddy work and mechanic’s liens - Posted by JoeKaiser

Posted by JoeKaiser on April 19, 2000 at 02:33:30:


The question is not “can he file a lien.” Of course he can. Heck, I can file a lien against your house. Whether or not the lien is legally enforceable is the real question.

You need to advise him, with a letter from your attorney, that his work was unacceptable and that the filing of any sort of lien will be considered “slander of title” and that he will pay the costs associated with the removal of the lien, as well as any damages the court may award.

Again, your attorney will know how to handle this.


Re: shoddy work and mechanic’s liens - Posted by JD

Posted by JD on April 18, 2000 at 23:21:41:

Hmmm, I believe in most States a refrigerator would not be considered a fixture, and thus any work on it would not be cause for a mech. lien filing. Even if it is cause for a mech. lien in your State I would not worry about. You can probably have the amount of the lien held in Escrow by the Title company while you fight it out in Court.

What about this situation Joe? - Posted by Mark-NC

Posted by Mark-NC on April 19, 2000 at 02:53:16:

Hey Joe,
On a simular subject I have a question for you.
A guy calls me yesterday and tells me he is trying to buy a home from a builder. When he originally went into the deal he was approved by a lender while it was being built. But now there is a chance that the financing will fall through and the place is ready to close.
The Problem is the buyer wanted upgrades to the home and phisically paid the builder and other trades men to do these. To the tune of about $7,000.
The builder says to the buyer, if you cant get the financing thats to bad I am not paying you back for the improvments or upgrades. The builder is saying this is like a deposit that is non refundable.
Does this buyer have any recourse or can he place a lien on the property to recover some of his money if the builder sells? He even told the builder he would take half of it as a settelment but the builder refused.