I hired Mike from Acorn Landscaping to remove an old interlocking front entranceway landing and install a new one along with installing interlocking accents cut into my driveway. Mike's quote was fair and Mike seemed genuine.
I paid a deposit and the Acorn crew started work in the spring of 2011. The work on the driveway was nicely done, but when I arrived home from work one evening I noticed that the front landing they installed was not squared to the door of the house, nor was it square at all. In fact, my neighbours started to comment on it. I called Mike immediately and at first he told me that it was not straight because the walls of my house were not straight. I told him that made no sense, and that the old interlocking landing was square and aligned with the front door, as it should be, so why couldn't the new landing. I proceeded to put a chalk line on the front landing to show how it should be squared to the door. It was out of square by almost 2 inches.
After a few phone calls, Mike agreed to send out a different crew to correct the work of the first crew later in the season. So, I waited a couple months.
This second crew finally arrived and did square up the landing properly, but two steps leading to the front doorway were not redone. These were also not squared to the front door, in fact, the joint on one side of the step was tight to the ajoining bricks, but the other side had a one inch gap filled with sand. It did not look professionally done at all.
I called Mike again, and he seemed reluntant to correct the problem and he again contended that the house was not straight. I again told him that the old steps were fine, so why can't the new steps by lined up as well. He finally indicated he would fix the problem. On his word that "he warranties his work and would not be in business this long if he didn't", I agreed to pay the balance on the job before the crew arrived to fix up those steps.
At first, I received no word on when the crew would arrive. After a couple followup phone calls by me, he indicated he would be there "next week". Next week came and went and he didn't show up. By now we were into the fall of 2011, and I called him again and asked him to correct the problem, and he said he would send a crew out shortly, but again no one showed up. Since the winter was now upon us I decided to wait until the spring of 2012 to contact him again. This time my wife called him, and he started to get perturbed with her and said " I said we would come out and fix it", and he then ended the call abruptly. It is now the fall of 2012, and Acorn Landscaping never did come out to fix the steps nor did they ever call us again.
I am not a satisfied customer, and considering I paid nearly $8,000 I think I should be. The warranty that Acorn offered was not delivered as I expected. It is too bad, because most of the job was fine and it would not have taken much to fix up those final steps, but that never happened.
My word of advice to anyone reading this is never, ever pay the entire balance until you are entirely satisfied. Contractors will say anything to get paid, but sometimes they will not followup on their word as they have moved onto the next job.