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Curtis Total Service


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Stay Away From Curtis Total Service Allentown PA
Posted by Mjg289 on 09/15/2009
ALLENTOWN, PENNSYLVANIA -- I contacted Curtis Total Service in November 2008 because I wanted to add new plumbing into a new bathroom I had framed out on the second floor of my home. The house was in remodel stage and it was mainly gutted. We agreed on $3200 to pull permits and inspections, add new lines to the second floor and set all the fixtures. The price was reasonable I felt. While the worker Jacob was on site giving me a quote, we looked in the basement at a fairly brand new water heater. He proceeded to tell me that since it had been shut off for a year, I should have them install a new one for $500. I declined and stated I would wait until the water was turned on before I would make a decision (it turned out to be perfectly fine). At the time I thought nothing of it, but it was definitely a hard sell tactic for no reason. The workers added new lines within approximately 2 days. Our agreement was 50% down, 50% upon completion. Going into the agreement, they knew it was going to take awhile before construction was complete. So in January they called me to complain that they hadn't received my final payment, and I stated that they had not even completed the work. When I was ready for them to come back to finish the job in February, that's when it got ugly. They came out within a day or so of me calling to inform them I was ready for them to finish. They proceeded to install a stall shower, a toilet, and a 48" vanity. Well the stall shower wasn't installed level (eventually leading to water ponding on one side). The 48" vanity was going into a space that was about 54" wide, and it wasn't centered it was pushed all the way to one side. I again, didn't make a huge deal as I was trying to move into my home as soon as possible. Then I had the water company come and turn on the water. There was a leak where they had sodered new lines in the basement. I called to the office to inform them that they needed to come out immediately as there was a leak and I could not use the water. The person in the office proceeded to tell me "we can get to it in a few days." I told him that it was unacceptable and that you better have someone out by the end of the day which I felt was reasonable, especially for a small repair that wouldn't take a plumber more than 5 minutes. The whole problem should have been avoided from the get-go as they should have pressure tested the lines. They eventually came out and repaired it the same day after 4 phone calls and a lot of grumbling. After the leak was repaired, they said there was one final inspection. I received a phone call from Jacob who informed me that the inspector told him the pressure coming into the house was too high and I needed a pressure regulator. I asked how much. He said normally we charge $1100, but I can do it for $900. This sounded crazy to me. I declined and told him I would take care of it from there. He asked me if final payment could be billed on my card, I agreed. Payment was never processed. When I investigated the pressure regulator, I was able to buy one from a plumbing supply house for $75. I had it installed by a friend who had it finished in 15 minutes and he charged me a case of beer. I saved $800. About a month later, someone from their office called me and asked if they could run my card for the remainder due. I said I authorized you to do that over a month ago. The gentleman says "oh, ok. How did everything turn out?" I proceeded to tell him it was the worst job I've ever seen, it was nothing but a hassle, and I wouldn't recommend them to my enemy. He says, "Ok. Is the card number (yadda yadda yadda)" I laughed, said yep and hung up the phone.

I had a friend get 3 estimates from 3 contractors on foundation work. $5000, $5500, and $12000 from Curtis after they told him he needed all sorts of useless garbage. He went with the $5500 and the problem he was having was solved.

Bottom line - Over-priced, take advantage if you don't know any better, terrible customer service, subpar quality.

Mark
Whitheall, PA

     
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Posted by *Brenda* on 2009-09-15:
Hey Mark, thanks for the heads up. I live in Whitehall also.
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Curtis Total Service Ala Cart Pricing- Uses Gross McGinley as there collection agency for repair not made.
Posted by Rosenfea on 06/15/2009
ALLENTOWN, PENNSYLVANIA -- 12/22/08 I called Curtis Total Service because my furnace was not running. The contractor added water to system and began to up sell me on service agreements. They billed me for Service Call $77, for Diagnostic $158, and $277 for balancing the system. Adding water and bleeding pipeline.

An hour after he left furnace stop running. Having spent the night with no heat I called another company who repair the problem, which was a faulty primary control. System ran like a gem the rest of winter.

Having tried to reach Curtis Total Service to complain, with no result, I stop payment on check.

After 18 days Curtis Total Service Operational Manager finally contacted me. I told him of problem and told him I would pay him $77 for service charge. He stated that wasn't satisfactory. I sent him check for $77.

This resulted in Curtis Total Service turning the collect over to Gross McGinley law firm. The lawyer for this firm had no desired to settle this issue even though she was contacted by the Pa, Attorney General Office. She was more concern with esculating the case to a Jury Trial while requesting $1000 judgment for her legal fee.

Alan Rosenfeld
Bethlehem Pa
     
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Posted by Soaring Consumer on 2009-06-15:
At this point you will need to hire a lawyer and countersue for your legal fees and additional damages for fraud (I consider that billing and attempting to sue someone for work never done would be fraud).

Get written statements from the office of the attorney general and from the person that actually fixed the problem as they would prove your defense and countersuit. It would also help if the person that actually fixed the heater would be your witness.

You will need to fight and fight hard. Good luck.
Posted by PA homeowner on 2009-07-08:
Did he cash your $77.00 check? Did you sign a contract? If he did cash your check and you did not sign a contract then you should be OK especially if you have a good invoice from the company you had out that actually fixed the problem.
I too have the experience of dealing with Curtis Total Service and their lawyers. I recommend you try to work this out throught the PA Attorney General's office first. If you file a claim in court then the consumer protection office will no longer be able to help you. My feeling is why have a PA Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law if contractors can hide behind lawyers and charges ammounts that consumers did not agree to pay. I hope it works out for you and I am sure we are not the only ones who they have dealt unfairly with.
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