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JD, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 1335
Experience:  Over 11 years litigation experience including eminent domain and real estate disputes
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I have been threatened by a contractor that he would put a

Resolved Question:

I have been threatened by a contractor that he would put a lien
on the house I live in.
I do not own it.
What does that mean
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  JD replied 7 years ago.

Did the contractor perform work on the house in question (the rental house) or was it something else?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Yes, they were working here for about 3-4 weeks, pulling up the Pergo floors, replacing all the lower kitchen cabinets, then having to replace the floors partly into the living room, pantry, up the hallway to the bedrooms.
It was one man who did the whole job called Robert.
Very dirty and sloppy workman. Just anything goes to get the money was the impressions I got and my friend in the Park who was watching the house and everything that was going on, while I was away.
I am allergic to mould and got pneumonia and spend the Christmas and New Year's holiday in bed - very ill.
Please let me know if you need any other information
Expert:  JD replied 7 years ago.

Who contracted with the man to do the work?


Was the work completed and was payment made?


Is there work yet to be done that has delayed payment or has the man breached the contract to perform the work in some way?


Did the landlord (property owner) authorize the work?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
1) I contracted him to do the job
2) He says they have completed the work but I am not at all happy with the results. Sloppy workmanship, Bits and pieces
look unfinished, etc.
So far I have paid them close to $10,000.00 but he wants
another $1300.00 + which I feel the job he did is not worth
that extra money.
They have gone way over the original estimate.
My ex husband is the owner of the house and he told me to take care of the problem.
Expert:  JD replied 7 years ago.

Very well.


A contractor may place a lien on the property they work to improve if the contract payment is not made in a timely manner. A lien is a security interest, not unlike a mortgage or deed of trust, that puts the world on notice that an unsatisfied debt is attached to the home. If you and your ex husband had a written lease and he had placed a notice in the land records that the home was a rental property then it is possible a lien could not be placed by the contractor. Since I doubt such notice has been provided in the land records the contractor may be free to place the lien.


The contractor can then sue you to enforce the contract. You also have the right to sue the contractor to remove the lien and for breach of contract if the work performed does not satisfy the terms of your contract with him. If the contractor prevails in the lawsuit then he could execute on your assets, garnish your wages, and potentially force the sale of the home to satisfy the judgment.


At this point you should consult a local attorney about this matter. You will need to explore your options for suing this contractor and preventing any lien from being placed on the home.


Please reply if I can help further.



Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Can you advise me on how I can find a reputable attorney,
It seems I made a mess of hiring the contractor.
However, I am a retired, handicapped, 75 year old, who has a very small pension. I do not have any assets of any kind.
Do not own anything or have any investments.

Is there any advice you can give me.
Expert:  JD replied 7 years ago.

When I am looking for a respectable attorney in another jurisdiction, I find the easiest way is using This service has been used by lawyers for decades to find other attorneys in other jurisdictions. It is actually the new online version of a series of book volume listings that used to be found in every law library. The best thing about this listing service is that you can search by practice area, geographical location, and it has peer review ratings to help you pick a lawyer with a good reputation.


Please reply if I can help further.



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