Is there a specific demand letter for a homeowner to use against a sub-contractor regrading a refund of monies paid for improper work?

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Is there a specific demand letter for a homeowner to use against a sub-contractor regrading a refund of monies paid for improper work?

My husband and I built a house and hired an out-of-state sub-contractor to do our siding. Well we have found out through another professional that the siding was done 100% incorrectly. We would like to get our money for labor and material back. We want to send a demand letter first, before going to court. Please advise.

Asked on August 30, 2010 under General Practice, Massachusetts

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

There is no specific form for such a demand letter, though you should be able to find some examples easily enough on the Internet. The important things to do are:

1) Check the agreement you had with the sub-contractor; what exactly did he promise or commit to? What warranties, if any, are spelled out in the agreement?

2) You should probably get a 3rd opinion before  you proceed--right now, you just have one contractor's opinion vs. anothers. How do you know the 2nd professional is correct?

3) What evidence do you have and can you marshall--spec sheets; receipts; descriptions of materials or packing slips; physical evidence of damage to your home; etc. Related to the above, if all you have, "Well, Bob said you did it wrong," it's highly unlikely the first contractor will agree to repay you. You want to show that in a demonstrable way, you didn't get what you paid for; or the wrong materials were used for this project or conditions; or damage was done to your home; etc.

4) Decide on your bottom line: if the sub-contractor will give you something back, but not all, what's the lowest you can accept and still feel good about yourself? 


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