By Debbie Vallone-Homeier
Paragon C&D Builders/Vallone Real Estate
Do you call Cousin Vinny for the job? I am not talking about the Italian for one of “Those Jobs,” but Vinny the cousin who is a carpenter, and just so happens to be Italian. So now that I have your attention, let’s talk about hiring family to do a construction job for you. It might be a good thing but it can turn out to be a bad thing.
Hiring family might be a bad thing. Why? Let’s continue to use Vinny as our main contractor in this article. Vinny is your cousin, and his work is fabulous. You decide to hire Vinny to build your outdoor bbq/fire pit patio because you know the work will be done to your standards. Vinny gives you the “family” discount which is even better. Everything is starting to fall into place. You have Vinny to do the job, a great price, and he can start on your job next week. Prior to Vinny starting the job, he gets a call to make more money if he starts the job the week he is to start yours. Now your job will be delayed two weeks.
You shake your head and agree. Two weeks later, Vinny shows up ready to start your job. Things are looking up. Vinny gets the concrete in for that new patio and starts the stone work on the fire pit and bar-b-que pit. In the middle of the stone work, Vinny comes to you with those sad cousin eyes and tells you he needs to pull off your job to handle another job that will bring in three times the amount you are paying and he will need to be gone two months.
So you bite your tongue and once again agree to allow the delay. Two months pass, and you get a call with another delay. At this point, you finally tell Vinny you need the work complete. Vinny says he can send one of his guys to do some work on your patio until he is free. You agree. Quality is nothing like Vinny’s. Five months later, you have a completed patio but the quality is not as good and it took four times the amount of time and some additional money. You have to see Vinny at Christmas and all other holidays. You know he did you wrong. Vinny is tense with the situation too. So to make my point, you thought you were getting a good deal and helping family out, but it really cost you more and now there is tension with this family member.
Does this always happen? No. Cousin Vinny could be the type that keeps his word and it does not matter if you are family or not. He will stay on the job from the start to the completion and actually completes it when he tells you he will and at the same cost. And the best thing, he will not charge you an astronomical amount to do that patio project. The best thing, you still have fun at those family gatherings.
We have seen jobs where a family member knew the family had money and took advantage of the situation. Bad thing, we’ve had to come behind them and fix the job at a fraction of the cost. Sad situation. Sometimes it’s best to keep family and friends out of the business picture. Just know that it can go either way.
For ALL Your Real Estate and Building needs or questions, call Debbie at (713)818-6658 or (830) 833-4249 / email@example.com