ROWLETT (CBSDFW.COM) – “I started praying, I always thought my last prayer alive would be please forgive my sins, instead I was saying, please don’t let me die,” said Daniela Circu.
Circu rode out the December 2015 tornado that ravaged Rowlett and Garland in her bathroom.
Her roof is still missing and holes dot the walls despite Circu hiring a contractor to do repairs in early January.
“They ordered a dumpster that sat in my yard for a month. When I saw the dumpster was here, I got excited because I thought they were going to start working,” said Circu.
But by February, Circu said she still didn’t see any progress.
“When I called them to see what the hold up was they said they didn’t receive the money,” said Circu.
But according to Circu’s mortage company, Way Construction was sent a $40,000 insurance check, which the company cashed immediately.
“They said February 2 is when the contractor cashed the check, I called on February 10 to see what the holdup was,” said Circu.
Circu said that’s when she told the company she wanted out of the contract.
A few weeks later, Way Construction sent the $40,000 payment back to the mortgage company.
Then, Circu received a bill from the construction company for $4,000.
The invoice showed the company charged Circu for the dumpster, temporary electric power and other items Circu doesn’t believe she should be on the hook for.
“They ordered temporary electric power that they set up… that never got used. They are charging me $1200 for the estimate they gave me and $600 for reinforcement of the tarp,” said Circu.
The invoice also showed the company has charged her 10 percent overhead and 10 percent profit.
“Now, they are threating to put a lien on my property,” said Circu.
Way Construction told CBS11’s Consumer Justice unit they did some work on Circu’s property including pulling permits and putting temporary electricity in the home.
A manager said they were waiting to start the work for several reasons, including a difference in the estimate.
Way Construction said their estimate to complete the job was $50,000 more than what the insurance adjustor originally said the job would cost.
The company is now working with Circu to come to an amount that both believe is fair for her to pay.
CBS11 reached out to several experts to ask how consumers could avoid a similar situation.
“The full scope of the project should be agreed up by all parties, the homeowner, the contractor and the insurance company before a large sum of money is handed over,” said A.J. Huckaby, past president of the NTRCA.
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