It would honestly be difficult to imagine our experience with Israel Villarreal/Cinco Contracting going any worse than it did. My partner and I trusted him with our money and our business and he completely ripped us off and left us without the ability to operate our business for a month now. We have a massage business located in a small shopping center and our landlord advised us back in the fall of 2013 that when our 5 year lease expired, they wanted to allow the anchor tenant next door to expand their operation and take over our space. They indicated a desire to keep us as a tenant however and worked with us to build out a new spa at another (vacant) suite in the same shopping center. So, we found Cinco Contracting listed on Angie’s List and contacted him about doing the job. He seemed eager to work with us and seemed willing to go the extra mile to make sure we were taken care of. Boy, were we ever deceived. We signed the construction contract on Jan 7, 2014 which stated that he was to begin construction promptly by Jan 15th and it allowed the contractor 6-8 weeks to complete the project. The contractor said he could finish the job in 4-6 weeks however. The plan was to begin our new lease on March 1, 2014 and to move directly from one location to another without missing a beat. It has now been over 4 months and we have been left with nothing more than a partially completed suite (walls and partial plumbing and partial electric only) and our business has been shut down for a month now. The contractor walked off the job at a point when he could pocket the most money possible. He was paid $5,000 up front to begin the project and was given more money through a draw schedule totaling another $12,000. At one point he said the work would have to stop until he received some more money even though he couldn’t account for the money he had already been given. We made a big mistake and gave him an additional $2,000 at that time. According to his own figures, which do not account for us having to correct over $1,000 worth of bad work, he can only account for $9,000 of the $17,000 given. And that includes paying some contractors that he has yet to pay. A general contractor’s primary job is to line up and coordinate all the work being done by the contractors, pay them and ensure that quality work is being done according to the plans provided. This contractor was a complete failure in every aspect of the job. The project didn’t even get started until April 2, almost 3 months after the contract was signed due primarily to his complete failure to line up his plumbing and electric contractors. Both of those contractors are required to be listed on the building permit before the city with allow construction to begin. By the time he got started, we were at the end of our existing lease. We were able to buy some additional time (3 weeks into April) before we eventually had to vacate our old suite. We continuously advised Israel of our deadline to vacate the old suite but he NEVER showed any sense of urgency. After the initial rough/drain plumbing was done, he failed to ever get a plumber back on the job site! We have no water lines run and obviously no running water. To make matters worse, he used a plumber other than the one listed on the permit which resulted in the city shutting down the project with a “Stop Work Order”. He also claimed (but never supported with ANY documentation) that he lost his plumber for the job and that a replacement plumber was going to cost $4,000 more and that we needed to provide the difference despite the fact that a contract was in place. In the end, this contractor failed to complete ANY aspect of the job and left us with thousands of dollars of work to be done including the correction of some very poor sheetrock/drywall work. Corrections also need to be made to the plumbing (drain) work as well as the electrical work. Nothing was completed, nothing was done well and he ran off with our money leaving us without a place to operate our business. He failed to pay the electrical contractor at all, only paid other contractors a fraction of what they were owed despite the fact that we had provided him money to complete the work. According to reviews we subsequently found on the web, Mr Villarrael has walked off at least one job before and has been accused of being a crook and providing very poor quality work which fails to meet city inspections and puts lives in danger. From our experience, he is a snake, a liar and a thief and has no business operating any kind of construction business. His “crews” are a joke! He apparently picks up day laborers of very questionable skill levels to do the work at hand and provides minimal supervision. WE rarely saw him on the construction site resulting in work being done poorly and different from the plan and design. One day in early April, we finally saw some framing going up for the walls. I walked over to take a look and the framing contractor who was working at the time had one room completely framed in without a door opening and had doors on two other rooms in the wrong place. Israel, never purchased all the materials necessary to do a given job up front and on more than one occasion he had contractors on the site needing materials to do their job. One Sat, he showed up hours later than he promised a contractor who was putting up sheet rock. He showed up empty handed and claimed that the store was closed and were out of sheetrock. We have a Home Depot minutes away. Makes no sense. He never had more than a couple of unskilled workers on the job at a time which made progress very slow and of poor quality. We have approx 30 pics depicting substandard work. After he walked off the job with our money, we have had contractors show up at the site saying they were owed money. At one point since walking, the contractor told my partner he would return some of the money he had been given if we dropped the complaint to the Attorney General’s Office, Angie’s List and to the BBB. Of course, that was another lie. Before that, he seemed to think he had us over a barrel after walking off the job and kept manipulating numbers and playing games to try to get us to sign a change order for more and more money before he would get back on the job. I smelled a rat before he walked off the job and was trying to hold him accountable for completing the job I hired him to do asap. He failed over and over to get a plumber back on the job site so day after day, little or no progress was being made. About that time, I jumped his case and he refused to communicate with me any further and would only talk to my partner who had been out on leave for a couple of months. This contractor deserves a failing grade in EVERY ASPECT and needs to be held accountable for his actions. With regards to completing the job on schedule and keeping our business going without any interruption = F, Coordinating his contractors = F, Staying on budget = F, Knowledge of construction codes and following city requirements = F, Paying his workers = F, Providing quality work = F, As we have tried to put the pieces of this project and our business back together, it has become pretty clear to us that Cinco Contracting never intended to complete this job but was simply waiting for the optimal time to walk with the maximum amount of money in hand. I can’t even believe that there are people like that who aren’t men enough to earn their money with hard work and integrity
This complaint and/or review was posted on HolySmoke.org on 05:21 am, June 13, 2018 (CST) and is a permanent record located at: https://www.holysmoke.org/scam/israel-villarreal-review/.
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