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Update: Unfortunately, disagreements between contractors and homeowners are not uncommon. Unforeseen problems can arise during a remodeling project that mean more time and money is required, and though this might not be the fault of the contractor, it can still cause misunderstandings. Whether it’s a simple miscommunication or something more serious such as unsafe workmanship, there are a number of steps you can take to try to resolve the problem.

It is not uncommon for homeowners and contractors to have a disagreement during a remodeling project. The disagreement can be simply a misunderstanding or can be a real difference of opinion. The disagreement could be over matters related to unsatisfactory workmanship, the agreed extent of remodel, quantity and quality of material used, insurance, completion date, responsibility for cleaning up after the remodel, payment and payment schedule, and responsibility for damage.

If you have a disagreement with your contractor try to approach the matter of dispute in a diplomatic way and carefully consider both your and your contractor’s point of view. In order to be able to support your claim in a dispute it is important to have the terms and conditions in writing. A little honest discussion is usually sufficient to iron out a disagreement between you and your contractor.

There may also be occasions when a discussion may not suffice for reasons such as the contractor going out of business or the quality of work being too poor to merit full payment. In such cases, the disagreement may have to be resolved by involving a third party such as an home inspector who can later suggest a solution in a formal setting.


Homeowners may be required to file a formal complaint with the Registrar of Contractors if efforts to resolve the disagreement informally are not successful. The complaint form can be acquired through a telephone request or in person from the Registrar’s office. Information to be filled in the contract form includes the name and address details of the home owner and the contractor, date of commencement of work, period of remodel, nature of the problem, etc.

A claim made in a civil lawsuit may ultimately be the only way for you to remedy the losses you have incurred during the remodeling project. In this case a real estate attorney or other attorney who is familiar with construction and construction law can be a valuable aid to your efforts.