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Kitchen Remodel Horror Story: Brother-in-Law Botched the Kitchen

Oct 27, 2017 | by Erin Greer

Gwen R. of Weymouth, MA has a scary story to share about a kitchen renovation turned frightening family feud:

Unrealiable Kitchen Contractor

I wanted to remodel my kitchen last year and called you for a free in-home estimate. Afterwards, my brother-in-law Danny said, "I can do it for a fraction of that." It seemed like a good idea.

Danny tore up the kitchen before he went to buy the cabinets and countertop, and I was without a kitchen for weeks. He bought the cheapest products he could find and installed them badly. The doors on the wall cabinets don't line up with the doors on the bottom cabinets. The doors are all crooked, and don't exactly match. The countertop doesn't quite touch the wall on one side, and hangs over the edge of the cabinet about an inch at the other end.

Danny refuses to admit there's anything wrong. And as a bonus, he thought the price we agreed upon was too low when he was finished, and demanded more money. It led to a very ugly family argument with some of my relatives taking his side and some taking mine.

I did my kitchen because I was dreaming of having a big family dinner during the holidays. Now the prospect of a big family dinner is a nightmare, and I'm not looking forward to having to sit at a table with Danny pretending everything is all right.

Sorry to hear that this happened to you, Gwen. When things go down-hill with family on a remodel, it can certainly be tough to reconcile those differences. We highly suggest selecting a design-builder based on their credentials, and not based on family-ties.

If you do consider a relative to hep you with a remodel, compare their answers to these questions against some other local contractors. Hire the contractor that demonstrates their expertise through credentials, references, and customer reviews—regardless of their relationship to you. In the end, it will be easier to explain to your relative that you chose a different contractor, than to resolve a family-wide feud.

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