I have been a home owner for 22 years and hired many tradesmen during this time including those doing a second story addition. I am happy to say that this has been my only negative experience. I learned a lot of lessons from this experience and it is my hope to pass on my lessons to others, plus A Marco Plumbing encourages customers to write reviews!
As Mark’s quote seemed reasonable I hired him. He subcontracted to two others to repair a hole in my dining room ceiling and to paint. These jobs were done perfectly and cost $850 plus tax. The problem started with the bathroom. I needed a Jacuzzi bathtub removed and a normal bathtub installed. The removal of the Jacuzzi was fine and the hook up of the tub fine also. The problem was with the tiling.
Lesson #1. Be aware when reading reviews. A Marco Plumbing has mostly positive reviews. Were any of those reviews for him as a tile setter?
I purchased a large tile and mosaic to make two strips. I have had tiles installed before but not tiles of two different thicknesses. In addition I have never had tiles installed in a shower. After the first row was installed I didn’t complain. I didn’t see a problem. I believe that is due to my lack of experience. I should have noticed then that he used large spacers. I should have also noticed that he was using glue not cement. I should have noticed that he did not use the cement board that is normally used in bathrooms and is more expensive. I should also have observed him installing the tiles meaning he did not put any glue on the back of the tile; the tile went on the dry wall board only. I was told by the tile setter I hired later that this meant the large tiles on the ceiling could have fallen into the tub at some point in the future.
Lesson #2. Be completely informed about tile installation. Know the size of the spacers you want, know whether the tiles you have chosen are suitable for a bathroom, know how you want them installed (i.e.: are you okay with glue and do you want glue on the tile and the board or just on the board?), do you want cement board used or just water resistant dry wall/ ) and do not expect the a plumber to discuss any of this with you.
Once all the tiles were installed I complained that they were crooked and not level and not straight and not laying flat against the wall. Mark said he was committed to my satisfaction and would come back and fix them. I questioned why he used glue and how he was addressing the issue of the varying thicknesses of the tiles. Mark assured me that he has been endorsed by a TV personality and knows what he is doing and seemed to imply I was out of line for doing any research on the internet.
Lesson #3. If a person leaves your home after doing a bad looking job, don’t let them have a second chance.
Mark returned and did try his best fix the tiles in places but the mosaic was still not right. When I again complained, Mark agreed to have his “tile setter” come to fix the mosaic. Mark was not willing to have the entire tiling job redone.
Lesson # 4. Even when a company states they are committed to your satisfaction, there is a limit.
When the tile setter came and removed the mosaic I realized that even with the mosaic straighter I could not live with the larger spacers. I was also not happy with the use of glue as strangely after a couple of weeks the glue was still not dry in places. I told Mark that I would be hiring someone else and he agreed to give me a credit of $1100.00 towards the balance owing. I obtained a quote of $1200.00 to re-do the tile installation but ended up paying $1500.00 plus purchasing all new tile because all of the tiles and board that Mark had installed went to landfill. Lesson # 5. It is best to hire someone proficient in his trade.
Re: PAYMENTS. When the work began I gave my credit card information and agreed to a deposit. After the ceiling repair was done I again agreed to an installment be charged on my credit card. When contacted about the $1200.00 balance owing I mentioned that I was out $1500.00 plus the cost of new tiles as well as the fact that all the previously installed tiles and dry wall when to landfill. The response of Sharon in the office was to say it was my decision to hire someone else and to charge the $1200.00 owing to my credit card without giving me notice she was doing so. It looks to be like I paid A Marco Plumbing over $2500.00 to hook up a bathtub and for a new bathtub.
The story ends with Sharon advising me that any further correspondence will be forwarded to their lawyer.