I recently contacted 3 different fencing contractors for quotes to install a vinyl fence to replace our old wood fence on the property line of my property and my neighbors. One contractor in particular came to my home on (6/8/10), and gave me a quote for both sides of my yard. I asked him about availability (as I do for all contractors), and he immediately called his scheduling desk to find the availability. He told me that June 19, 2010 was his first available, and he said let me pencil that in for you and if if doesn't work just call me, and then he said I'm going to sign my name right here on this proposal and I need for you to sign too. When I looked at the paperwork it clearly stated on the top of page "Contract". So, I told him I'm not signing this because it's a contract, and then he said "you are not ready to commit?". I told him of course not. I'm not paying for this job 100% my neighbors and I have to talk about it and agree. At this point I had made up my mind that we would not be using his company. The next day(6/9), I called him (cell phone records to prove), and told him to take me off his calendar and that we were not going to use him. On June 19, 2010 my husband and I left our home early that morning headed to LAX to catch a flight to Maui. On June 19, 2010, his work crew showed up at my house took down my old fence and installed the vinyl fence. Now his company wants me to pay for a fence that I did not authorize. The cost of the fence $2664 total for one side. He said I gave him a verbal, I told him that he is a liar and a deceitful person operating in trickery to get sales. Besides, his quote was the third quote that I received and his prices were higher than the other two contractors, there is no way that I would have agreed to hire him. This is a short but factual version of the problem at hand. He is threatening to place a Mechanics Lien on my property. My husband called him to negoiate a price of $1,000 total. However, I feel we shouldn't pay anything, since I did not hire him, and I called him the next day to be taken off his calendar, which he denies. What are my rights? We live in California.
HiI understand your concern over this unfortunate situation.It sounds like you clearly did not have a written contract or a verbal contract. Accordingly, you are not responsible for payment to this contractor. The contractor has a right to place a lien for any rightful work on the home where compensation was not provided. However, if the contractor places a lien without any legal basis - such as a contract, you can have the lien removed by filing a motion with the court. In such case, the contractor could be held responsible for your attorney fees removing the unjust lien. You will need a local real estate attorney to assist with removal of an unlawfully filed lien.It might be wise to simply settle with the contractor to avoid the trouble and expense. That is more of a personal than a legal decision. The law is on your side.If you need a local attorney referral, please see this resource. http://www.abanet.org/legalservices/lris/directory/I hope my answer helps. Thanks for using Just Answer!
Attorney & Counselor at Law with significant consumer protection law experience.
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