I guess I should share this here, but I don't feel like writing about it except in blurbs.
April 21 my contractor texted me and asked me to renew the building permit. I did.
May 12 or so was the last time Jordan texted me.
Friday evening I decided to call to nag over the holiday weekend, as he was allegedly just getting inspections performed. His number was disconnected. I emailed. Then in a coincidence, I was cleaning up my email when I ran into the daily popville where I saw an article, the type you see all the time "LeDroit Park Red Hot Real Estate – Sold in 2 days. No parking. For more than 10% above the list price"
It was Jordan's home.
I rechecked on redfin, https://www.redfin.com/DC/Washington/400-U-St-NW-20001/home/10045967
Bought in 2009 for 440k, sold 1.425 mil on May 23.
That home is also his business address. He hasn't responded to email.
I looked downstairs, and he removed his welder - the last tool he had here. He split town entirely - took the money and ran.
I have a friend who paid him a deposit, big one, and he hasn't been paid back either.
I called the lawyer previously consulted with as this is a change. Possibly this is a good change, as we already checked the property for liens and he had none current but the mortgage (he had previous liens from the water company, since paid). It was after 5 on a holiday weekend, so I left an embarrassingly too long voice mail and noted I would not be expecting a holiday weekend email (though on 2nd thought, lawyers probably work Memorial day). So the guy has demonstrably abandoned the job, and LLC company, so it might be easier to pursue him legally and he's got money to pursue. I might be able to get a freeze put on his accounts. This might make settlement easy, particularly if he has money and wants to avoid legal battles - if not, I face a mountain of legal bills if I pursue the issue with no guarantee of prevailing.
I anticipate talking to the lawyer Mon or Tues.
But I wrote about some of those details in fb. I got my hugs - and frankly advice from friends including possible contractor leads.
I have a mountain of work to do - my not-stress life, where I was just annoyed at waiting for the contractor to do his thing and how much clean-up there would be, whether I'd have to pay him more...now I have to choose what I can do, what i pay for, bid contractors, research them, and learn what a construction contract should be.
(unless I use the less professional guy who my direct neighbor swears by, a valid option but I won't be paying up front you see)
Now I'm left with feelings. How many times did I cook my own beans and rice to save money? He drove a new mini-4-door. His house was gorgeous, though he renovated it himself. I went to college, I worked the same job, I sunk money away and didn't eat out, I drive my old car - the one with the damage on the side that was salvage-valued on the title...all just to lose tens of thousands of dollars.
And it makes no sense. Weeks ago he was working. The top is nearly done, with 800 minor things that need doing and only "major" issues like final inspection, drywalling closets, a laundry closet door...
the wrecked fence and backyard that is a debris-strewn mess of clay and rocks and weeds
MOST of the work was done. The demolition was done, the digout done, plumbing inspected (when it was the whole house), most inspections and work done on the basement...just ...
I got an estimate from a reputable contractor, ROUGH and noncommittal, 50k to finish the basement.
Another 50k to finish the top.
This does not include the fact asshat left railings missing from the top and bottom porch.
I paid for so many materials, never mind work. The basement kitchen cabinets are paid for. But he did tile the floor and bathroom (if the framing will pass inspection - could it all be wasted?)
I have the money...if I pull it from my retirement.
I have to re-bid the work. The permits are in his name and the name of strangers, electricians and plumbers who lend their name out to have others do the work.
This person cleared a fucking million dollars and left me with this. I did nothing wrong. I have been robbed - if he had held a gun in an alley he could go to jail, but like American Greed porn he can likely just walk.
I don't feel like playing my rabidly addicted video games. I can't sleep, but I'm too tired to do anything. I rest and my mind returns to all the things that were supposed to happen, how much I've lost, all I have left to do, the godonlyknows mysteries that inspections will bring, questions like will I need a sprinkler system if they restart code etc.
and that's why I'm writing. I can say it over and over, I could organize it into something coherent but instead it's just spaghetti of nonproductive thoughts keeping me up. My gf wants to do something fun today, I want to stare at the dirt yard. Now my head is full of all the things I paid for, MATERIALS that aren't here, and this guy running around being irresponsible with my money - skipping town.
There are a ton of things he ruined and left half-broken or done that I'm stuck with. He was going to build a deck, so he removed the metal railing from the existing one - and the stairs from the top, so I have unsafe decks. He dug and placed wood posts for the fence he broke but didn't rebuild, and the deck that isn't there - that I paid him a grand for fake-wood upgrades on materials. The front door is hanging there as he removed all the trim to measure for a replacement. I tucked insulation around it as you could see and feel the air where the trim was pulled. I walk on boards to cross the yard of dirt that used to be a lawn and plants but he buried in dirt he never removed.
Then snippets of what a fool I am. I got my law-thing, but didn't have a good contract. I paid too much so he had no incentive and I lost more than the pending work. I could have paid for the lottery or IRS scam for this kind of idiocy. I paid someone else to help me bid the work, and as a control for quality, and here I am anyway. This was all avoidable. I did try to get an architect to bid on the work but the one recommended firm declined to bid on my work, and I thought i could just to go the contractor thinking I knew what i wanted. All the mistakes I made in an area I had no expertise.
I can't stop thinking about it. I could shove it aside and just deal on Monday or Tuesday when I hear from the lawyer. I did sell stocks and have a bunch of cash ready to go on this reboot, and who knows I may be able to have him criminally prosecuted, settle the civil suit...and I can't doa fucking thing now. I have to wait for the lawyer.
(well I did file a complaint, online, at DCRA)
but I can't stop thinking. I feel sick, spinning in circles of thought, unable to sleep.
I don't think writing this out helped.