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FREEBURG, IL (KTVI) – A Freeburg Illinois couple interviews four contractors for their mobile home renovation.  Unfortunately the one they picked took off before the job was done.

It doesn`t look like much now but the Cardona family saw lots of potential in a small  mobile home.   Cheryl Cardona says it was perfect.  ‘We wanted a mobile home for our daughter who`s pregnant and due in July.   So we bought this one cause it needed work and it was reasonable.’

In mid-May, the family hired a contractor from Marissa who agreed to renovate.  Cheryl says it was a big job.  ‘We needed to replace drywall, fix the two bathrooms, replace a shower stall, new flooring, hang new cabinets that we bought.    And so it was a total transformation, and new windows, six new windows for the house.’

The Cardonas agreed to pay Perfection Floors and More what the family considered a reasonable price according to Cheryl.  ‘The first deposit was $3,200. Then we gave $1,5000, then we gave him $5,528.    A total of $10,228.’

It was all paid in a little over a week.  And they paid with cash because Cheryl says that’s what the contractor said he wanted.  ‘I figured he was a small company, and didn`t have the money to use, He told us that he was using fifteen hundred dollars on the company credit card.  And he needed us to pay that back. ‘

In a voice mail message the contractor’s response was the Cardonas breached the contract because they had his trailer and tools removed putting him a week behind on another job. Still the Cardonas had none of the money or unused supplies returned to them. Cheryl says  ‘We`re not a wealthy family.  We`re just trying to take care of our own children and provide a decent place for them to live.   And we`ve been taken.’

The Cardona family hired another guy to finish the work.  They`ve spent another $8,000 on top of what they lost with the first guy.   Be sure you`ve done your homework before hiring a contractor.  That includes checking Circuit Court websites for past claims against the individual.  Check with the Better Business Bureau and the Attorney General`s Office for complaints.  It`s your money, don`t get caught in contractor fraud.

If you have consumer issues call us at Contact 2.  The toll-free number is 800-782-2222. Volunteers take calls Monday through Thursday between 11:00 am and 1:00 pm.

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