Seth Dubinsky had heard the horror stories about people hiring contractors who don't finish a job and leave people out thousands of dollars. He wanted to avoid this problem when planning to remodel his kitchen. So, he decided to contract with the popular home improvement store, Lowe's, for his kitchen remodel.
But his experience has not been as "hassle-free" as their website describes their home installation and remodeling services.
"I wanted to go to Lowe's because they are a big box store," Dubinsky said. "I felt that if I had given them my money, it would be safer."
Eight months after the renovation started, it's still not even close to being completed.
"It's just really a huge disappointment," Dubinsky said.
Dubinsky paid for the project in full in advance. He paid Lowe's $41,577 in November.
The company told him the renovation would be done within 180 days by an independent third-party contractor. Dubinsky told us that right after the project got started, it came to a standstill.
"In January when they did the demo, they removed a load bearing wall," Dubinsky said. "When they did that it caused the ceiling to start to collapse."
Dubinsky said he reached out to Lowe's to tell them about the problem and they made the decision to bring in a different contractor to finish the job. But soon after the second contractor started, the project hit another roadblock.
Dubinsky says the new contractor told him additional plumbing work needed to be done and that required more money from him and additional permits.
After Dubinsky paid an additional $1,895, the permit still wasn't approved to start the plumbing work and his kitchen had still not been complete.
"After going back and forth, back and forth, for months, I finally reached out to you all to see if you could do something to help me try to reach out to them," Dubinsky said.
We sat down with Dubinsky in early July and the project had already taken longer than the estimated 180 days. The contractor was also still waiting for their permit approval.
"I don't have a stove, I don't have a refrigerator, there are no whole bottles of water, I have to leave the house every time I have a snack," Dubinsky told us.
When we reached out to Lowe's a representative sent us the following statement, "Thank you again for reaching out. We continue to work directly with Mr. Dubinsky to resolve his concerns as quickly as possible. We're currently awaiting approval of one permit and continue to work with the appropriate officials to expedite that approval. Once we have that approval, completing Mr. Dubinsky's project is our priority."
"What's a week or two weeks to them to try and submit a permit and see what happens," Dubinsky said. "But for me a day is like two or three weeks."
Within weeks of us reaching out, Lowe's offered to give Dubinsky his money back plus additional compensation.
"I feel duped because I felt like giving them all the money upfront was going to be okay because I was going to have their backings," Dubinsky said.
In another statement a Lowe's Representative said, "We regret Mr. Dubinsky's experience and apologize for the delay as we worked to reconcile the situation. We're pleased to resolve Mr. Dubinsky's concerns to his satisfaction."