ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Julia Sipples says she and her boyfriend asked GP Masonry to finish the master bathroom of their Seneca Parkway home in the summer of 2019.
“It was a disaster. It was a mess,” says Sipples. “(GP) had started pulling drywall off that was already up, there was trash in our tub, there were these beams he had cut through.”
Sipples says it seems like the workers just didn’t know what they were doing, leaving halfway through the contracted job. Nearly 2 years later, a staple gun and other tools were still in the bathroom.
Today, it remains unfinished, with their home now for sale. For a year, they tried to get their money back. 23 pages of provided text messages show a long back and forth between GP and Sipples’ boyfriend, who is asking for a refund of $5,000.
The couple says GP cut apart weight-bearing beams and ran electric wrong into the room, which all said and done, would actually cost more than $5,000 to fix. GP promised to pay in the texts, but Sipples said they never did.
Sipples says they are fed up. They finally took him to small claims court, winning a lawsuit.
“He never came to court. So we just got a judgment. He’s impossible to get money from,” Sipples said.
We tracked down GP Masonry’s Giovanni Pannoni for his side of the story. He declined an on-camera interview.
Panonni did say over the phone that he said Sipples was a friend, and his team had to start work late at 6 pm, and that the job too demanding. He said they were fired from the job, and are unaware of any lawsuits.
“I never got anything in the mail about that. I’ve not gotten any paperwork as far as that goes,” said Pannoni.
But according to Sipples and “Docket Alarm,” Pannoni has been taken to small claims court for five other cases like this.
Additionally, there have been four complaints against GP Masonry filed with the Better Business Bureau. Melanie McGovern with the Bureau says whenever you hire someone for a big job like this, do your research.
“You want three bids. Have them come out to assess the project. Get the contract, and never pay up-front,” says McGovern. She adds it’s best to do something like pay one-third upfront, one-third as work completes, and the final one-third once the job is totally finished.
“Definately go and check them out. It might not be a legitimate contractor,” says McGovern.
Sipples has since reached out to the State Attorney General’s Office. She’s hoping by drawing more attention to this, she’ll get her refund.
“Unfortunately, it’s kind of a shot in the dark,” she says.