Archive for the 'Legal Stuff' Category

Why competitive bidding doesn’t work

Perhaps you’ve heard this quip when a spacecraft is launched: “There goes the lowest bid.” In my mind, trying to get the lowest bid for a remodeling project is just as foolish. And a lot of contractors agree with me. Gayler Construction explains very clearly how buying remodeling services is not even remotely like buying a [...]

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Report: ‘Green’ product claims are often misleading — USA Today

More than 95% of consumer products marketed as “green,” including all toys surveyed, make misleading or inaccurate claims, says a report today. The number of products claiming to be green increased 73% since 2009, according to a survey by TerraChoice,an Ottawa-based marketing firm owned mostly by Underwriters Laboratory of Canada. The UL network does independent [...]

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Protect your family from lead-dust poisoning during remodeling

If you live in a house older than 1978, there’s a chance it contains paint with lead in it. Now don’t freak out. Even though lead when ingested or inhaled can cause brain damage, the paint itself is not dangerous unless it’s chipping off or is turned into dust by sanding and cutting. In a [...]

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Owners of pre-1978 homes may soon have a better pool of contractors to choose from

Own an older home? Beginning April 22, only contractors who have been trained in safe handling of lead-contaminated paint dust can legally work on your home. And that’s a good thing for you. If you’ve been keeping up with contractor-type news, you know that contractors are not happy at all with a soon-to-be enforced EPA [...]

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Contractors lagging behind in new lead training law

Planning to remodel? Unless your home is fairly new, only renovators certified to handle lead will soon be legally allowed to do the work.  The problem: Many are not yet ready. The EPA is slated to enact a rule April 22 that will require remodelers who work on homes built before 1978, when lead paint [...]

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Coach Sean Payton wants to know: Does your house contain tainted drywall?

By Kathy Price-Robinson for DIY Life: Lately, when Louisiana residents like myself see New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton on TV, it’s usually not in reference to the Saints’ first-ever trip to the Super Bowl February 7. Rather, in numerous ad spots, Payton can be seen discussing tainted drywall from China that was used in [...]

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New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton is lead plaintiff in Chinese drywall suit

Saints coach Sean Payton is the lead plaintiff in a 591-page class action lawsuit against Knauf Plasterboard Tainjin Co. Ltd., a Chinese company that manufactured drywall that is believed to be corroding homes and making people sick. The suit, filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in New Orleans on behalf of people with this particular [...]

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Unlicensed contractor faces jail time, restitution

An unlicensed Napa (Calif.) contractor has been ordered to pay full restitution to three customers he defrauded or he faces a six-year prison term, the Contractors State Licensing Board said this week. Ronald Russell Clawson, 27, pleaded no contest in Napa County Superior Court last week to elder abuse, identity theft, grand theft and fraudulent [...]

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Rent-a-Husband allegedly divorces investors

Home repair contractor Kaile Warren had a rags-to-riches story that was enviable. The former homeless home improver credits "divine intervention" with giving him the idea for a home improvement company and brand name that would ultimately place him on a national stage that included appearances on Oprah, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, and the [...]

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4 steps to avoid a ‘remodel gone wrong’

A recent article on Bankrate.com, nicely written by Margarette Burnette, lists four steps to make sure you don't end up with a nightmare remodeling story to share at dinner parties. Sure, a nightmare remodel makes for some lively minutes of banter. But really, in the end, you want a successful remodel. If you need something [...]

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Police seek contractor accused of bilking woman, 73, out of $35,000

From the Orange County Register: HUNTINGTON BEACH — Police are seeking the public's help in finding Masoud Tabeshnekoo, who is charged with stealing $35,000 from a 73-year-old woman. The 48-year-old Tabeshnekoo, who is also known as Matthew Nekoo, has been charged with five felony counts of theft, theft from an elder, and diversion of construction [...]

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The temptation of the professional Viking gas grill

Sen. Ted Sevens of Alaska, the longest-serving Republican in the U.S. Senate, was indicted yesterday on allegations that he failed to report $250,000 in improvements that were done to his home. He has denied the charges. Among the items he allegedly got for free and didn’t report, according a story in the L.A. Times, were: [...]

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California’s most-wanted unlicensed contractors

News from the California Contractors State License Board: Worst of the Worst — Avoid These Contractors In our ongoing effort to protect California consumers, the CSLB has identified the worst unlicensed violators who are known to prey on vulnerable and unsuspecting homeowners that are involved in new home or home improvement projects. Complaints against the [...]

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Guest Blogger: Why you should hire a licensed contractor

Our guest blogger today is Pamela Mares, an information officer with the California Contractors State License Board. Pamela is responding to a recent post titled: When a job goes bad, is the contractor the only one at fault?). Here’s what she had to say about it: You are so right in your analogy about how [...]

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Weed problem in Ohio town, but not the smoking kind

A proposed amendment by the Canton City Council in Ohio could put homeowners who let their weeds and grass grow too high in jail. As the law stands now, according to The Repository in Canton, more than 8 inches constitutes high grass or weeds and first-time violators face a minor misdemeanor, which carries up to [...]

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Q&A: If a neighbor’s dead tree falls on my roof, who pays?

<p><a href=”http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/.shared/image.html?/photos/uncategorized/2008/05/20/deadtree.jpg” onclick=”window.open(this.href, &#39;_blank&#39;, &#39;width=620,height=826,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0&#39;); return false”><img alt=”Whose problem is a dead tree?” border=”0″ height=”333″ src=”http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/pardonourdust/images/2008/05/20/deadtree.jpg” style=”FLOAT: right; MARGIN: 5px” title=”Whose problem is a dead tree?” width=”250″ /></a>From Barry Stone&#39;s &quot;Ask the Inspector&quot; column in the <a href=”http://www.latimes.com/classified/realestate/”>Real Estate</a> section:</p> <p><strong>Question</strong>: The neighbors who live behind us have three large, dead trees that border our [...]

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Q&A: If a neighbor’s dead tree falls on my roof, who pays?

From Barry Stone's "Ask the Inspector" column in the Real Estate section: Question: The neighbors who live behind us have three large, dead trees that border our fence. A few years ago, our insurance company informed us that they would no longer insure our roof because it has wood shingles. If our neighbors' trees should [...]

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New limits on McMansions bring cheers, jeers from readers

Tuesday’s vote by the L.A. City Council to limit home sizes to 3,000 square feet on 5,000-square-foot flatland lots (a little larger on larger lots) was unanimous at 12 to 0. But the responses by readers were more, shall we say, well rounded. Are these restrictions a communist plot? Or necessary to preserve neighborhoods? Some [...]

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Honey, who put the 90-foot power pole in front of our house?

So imagine this: One day you look out your front window and see a gleaming 90-foot power pole in front of your house that was not there before. You’re shocked because you had no notice or warning from the power company, Edison. And that’s because Edison has the right of way and is not required [...]

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Fun facts about building permits

If you live in the city of Los Angeles and are planning some home improvements, the city’s Department of Building and Safety offers some fascinating FAQs: Do I need a permit to build a fence around my property? A permit is not required for any type of fence under 3’6″ in height. A permit is [...]

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