CHARLOTTE, NC – Action 9 first reported to general contractor Oak Meadow in November after four families said the company left projects unfinished despite paying thousands of dollars.
Today, more families in the Charlotte area say they paid the company for major home renovations, but it only did a small fraction of the job.
Paul Johnson says he hired Oak Meadow to redo his master bathroom and build a room on it.
“They ripped out the bathroom… did most of the demolition and some of the framing,” he said.
Johnson showed Jason Stoogenke of Action 9 the contract which said work was to start no later than July 18 and take 4 to 5 weeks. According to Johnson, he has paid Oak Meadow over $ 14,000 so far.
“It was just one excuse after another,” Johnson said.
Johnson says he tried to complete the project on his own, doing some of the work himself and hiring other contractors to do the rest, with all the extra expenses.
“I’m kind of the general contractor for my own project, so I took a plumber, I have a plasterboard guy, et cetera… Between having a family and a job, it was a lot of work. . It’s very frustrating, ”Johnson said. “It was hard on the family. It has been stressful.
According to Johnson, he and his wife can’t use the master bathroom and have most of their toiletries in bags instead of drawers or cupboards.
At the time of this report, nine families have complained to Action 9 with similar stories about Oak Meadow.
State records indicate that Jennifer Carlson is the president of Oak Meadow. According to several customers, Carlson told them that Oak Meadow had gone out of business.
The state business council said it was investigating complaints against Carlson, but his license was still active on Thursday.
Years ago, Action 9 investigated similar complaints against a builder called CarBON Custom Homes. The owners of this business eventually filed for bankruptcy.
State records show that one of the owners of CARBON was John Henry Carlson. According to Cabarrus County property records, John Henry Carlson and Jennifer Carlson live at an address in Concord, which is the same address listed for Oak Meadow. Customers say Jennifer and John are married.
While state records list Jennifer as president of Oak Meadow, they also list John as vice president of the company.
Since October, Action 9 has tried to contact the Carlsons on several occasions, but they have not responded in time for this report.
Stoogenke offers this advice when hiring a contractor:
– When considering a business, don’t just research its name. Also search for the owner’s name. You might get a better idea of their background.
– The general State enterprise has a Landlord recovery fund, which could cover all your losses. See below for more information.
NORTH CAROLINA OWNERSHIP RECOVERY FUND:
• The project must relate to your house and not a commercial building.
• It can be your primary residence or a secondary residence, as long as you do not rent this house.
• The project must be attached to your house, so a swimming pool or a detached garage would not be covered.
• You have to exhaust all other legal remedies first, which means you have to sue the contractor and get a judgment, and the contractor still doesn’t pay.
• Then you can claim the money. The board says about 50% of clients who apply win.
• If the entrepreneur goes bankrupt, you cannot get the money back from the fund. You become another online creditor in the bankruptcy process.
• Where does the fund get its money? $ 10 of every license obtained in the state goes into the fund. The board says this works out to about $ 750,000 to $ 1 million each year.
• The maximum you can get is 10% of the total. But the board must keep $ 250,000 in the pot at all times.
• The Commission holds hearings twice a year. He says about 90% of owners who make it to the hearing stage win.
(WATCH: 4 families say entrepreneur left projects unfinished, raked in thousands of dollars)
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