OK. Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me. A "friend" GC has, on several occasions, not paid me my final payment because he "hasn't gotten paid yet". After a year or so, and "writing off" the money he owed me, I decide to do a job for him again, with the understanding that I get paid BY HIM when I finish. Needless to say, he noe tells me that when he "settles up" with the customer, I'll get my final payment. All lectures aside ...
I have about 4 hours worth of work left, which includes extras which the homeowner has been promptly paying me for. Along with their final "options" bill, I am considering giving them a final bill for the basic wiring and telling them to deduct it from their final payment to the GC.
I use to work for a lot of different GC's and you had to watch out for them. One of my GC's was starting to "turn bad" by always being ahead of me in the money payments. I got wise to him on the last job I was going to do for him, and I upped all my prices for the job and made him pay in advance. This way when he "stiffed" me for the last payment, I didn't care. I already got my money from him and then some. Another GC we had to go to court with ( Small claims here in NJ) The bill for extras was about $7,000 But I had to drop the bill to $5,000 to go to small claims at the time. By the time the GC and my lawyer settled out of court the final payment was $4400. I didn't mind that but the lawyer took a $1,400 cut from the bill and then to add salt to the wound, he gave me back that $1400 and told me it was a "down payment" on a job I was going to do for him. SO, I had to work for that $1400 TWICE! Ya Gotta Luv It!!!
I had this happen about six years ago. I just played nice guy and asked the homeowner when he was closing on his nice new house. He replied wednesday of next week. So I replied "well I havent been paid for my final draw, so they'll be a lien waiting for you at the lawyers office instead if closing papers". The customers jaw hit the floor and within a hour the elusive GC was tracking me down to settle up.
[This message has been edited by arseegee (edited 03-02-2006).]
Here in NJ you use to have to put a lien on a house before you started the work. It was suppose to change but I got out of the business. Did it ever change? and can you still put a lien on the house after you started the job?