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March 19, 1999

Re: Case ID# 14258 16MAR99

In September of 1998, I signed a contract (copy attached) with Variety Windows to install new windows, siding and triangular attic vents on my home. During the last week of November, the installation was started, with it finishing on approximately December 9th, 1998. All the work was satisfactory with the exception of the attic vents. The problem is that the vents that were installed are not what I specified in the written contract. The vents installed block about 1/2 of the fan that is installed in the attic, which limits it's ability to cool the house. I have tried to resolve this issue with Variety, but have been given the run-around for several months. I am now turning to you to help me resolve this matter.

Here is a time-line of what has transpired so far.

December 10, 1998 (approx): Spoke with Jim Ragusa (President of Variety Windows) today. Explained that the gable end vents installed were not the ones specified in the original sales contract. The newly installed vents block the flow of air coming from the vent fan. Approximately 1/2 of the fan is blocked.

December 14, 1998 (approx): Jim called back to say that the reason that the rectangular vents were installed was that there are no replacement type vents made in that configuration available from his supplier. I found replacements that night at Home Depot via special order for my 11/12 pitch roof. Included is a photocopy from the Home Depot catalog.

December 15, 1998 (approx): Called Jim back and gave him the Home Depot SKU for the vents. He called back later the same day and said that he could get those from his supplier as well. He asked for payment of the outstanding balance ($5300.00), and I initially refused. He said that he would order the vents, and have them installed. Since all of the other work was satisfactory, we compromised on me giving him permission to charge $5000 of the outstanding balance to my credit card, with the understanding that the remaining $300 would be released when the vent issue was resolved.

December 18, 1998 (approx): The story suddenly changes. Jim called back to say that he talked to the installer, and the installer stated two things. First, that the fan was not blocked at all. Second, the installer constructed some sort of shroud/duct that funneled the air out the vent. According to Jim, this means that he no longer has to install the triangular vents. I told Jim that the installer is lying to him. I told Jim that I would get some photos and send them to him. I again reminded Jim that I had a written contract that called for triangular vents, and it did not matter what the installer had said, as he was responsible to live up to the terms of the contract.

December 22, 1998 (actual): I took pictures of the blocked fan (and the lack of the phantom "shroud"), and of the gable vents and e-mailed them to Jim. These photos can also be seen on the Internet at http://www.relitech.com/tomc/house

December 23, 1998 (actual): Spoke with Jim on the phone. He said that he did not have time to go over it on the phone that day. I asked Jim to call me back when he was free. I also mentioned that I would be off work the entire week between Christmas and new years, and that he was free to stop by so that we could resolve the situation face-to-face. Jim said he would call back soon.

March 4, 1999 (actual): I have not heard a single thing from Variety Windows since before Christmas. When I opened my credit card statement, I was suprised to find that Variety had charged the remaining $300 to my account without my permission. I called Variety at (301) 948-8902, but Jim was unable to take the call. I left a message with the lady who answered the phone for Jim to call me back.

March 5, 1998 (actual): I called and asked to speak to Jim, but he was unable to take the call. I left another message asking for Jim to return my call.

March 7, 1999: Jim called and left a message for me to call him back at (703) 321-2130 after 1:00PM.

March 7, 1999: I called back to Jim and told him that the situation was not acceptable, and that he could either remove the $300 charge or fix the problem. He said that the installer was supposed to call me, and when he didn't hear from me, he sent through the charge. He said the installer claimed that the fan was no there when they installed the siding, and that I must have added it later. I disagreed. He said that he would clear up the matter in 3 days.

March 16, 1999: I have waited more than the 3 days asked by Jim. I am now disputing the charge on my VISA card.

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