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Ralph D'Aries and Sons Joe D'Aries and Mike D'Aries consumer fraud, breach of contract, theft West Orange, New Jersey
6th of Oct, 2011 by User603401
In October 2010, we entered into a contract with Ralph D’Aries & Sons. A home improvement contractor from West Orange, NJ. We will refer to them as RDS. RDS did not supply us with their registration number or insurance policy information. RDS also did not supply us with name brands of products they would use on our house, quality of materials or quantity. RDS supplied us with a spreadsheet on October 20, 2010 which provided a time line for completion (12 weeks substantial completion) and a draw down schedule (see attached). Based on the price provided and the time line indicated we entered into the agreement. We expected that the project would be done by February 2011 and we expected good quality work. On October 26, 2010 we attended the town meeting with our architect, for a variance approval. At the town meeting the council asked that we change our plans slightly. Those changes were made and the architect provided those plans to RDS with a complete breakdown of materials to be used and elevations of the house. We were approved and RDS broke ground right after Thanksgiving using the plans from 11/15/2010, which were used for permits. After the foundation was put in, the project slowed down. Fewer workers were at our house and fewer hours were being put in. When February came and went and the job was not completed. RDS did not give us a reason in writing for not meeting the completion date and did not supply a firm completion date in writing. In March we began questioning the time frame. We were told that the project was being delayed but they didn’t specify why it was being delayed. We found out later that they were slowing work because Joe and Mike D’Aries wanted to meet about change orders to be signed even though we had paid them ahead of schedule and we did not necessarily agree with the cost. Joe D’Aries said that he wanted to make sure he was going to be paid, in spite of the fact that we paid ahead of schedule. In May we began to become upset with the lack of response. Many e-mails and discussions were had with RDS because they reduced the workers down to 3 men and work had come to a crawl. Whenever we asked about a time frame RDS would ask for more money and the project kept slowing down. Throughout the project there have been deviations from the architects plans which benefitted RDS. We were not given a choice of materials as the plans had indicated. RDS always chose the cheaper material to apply to our house. They didn’t specify in their contract brand names or quality of product. Our architectural plans called for the use of Azek and RDS installed aluminum and damaged it during installation. When RDS asked us to pick paint we specified Benjamin Moore and RDS applied Behr, which is a much cheaper paint and they only applied one coat but Joe D’Aries told us they would apply primer and two coats. RDS installed Home Depot house wrap instead of Tyvek, Home Depot is much cheaper. We feel that we have been a victim of fraud. Joe D’Aries misrepresented that our cast iron plumbing was in need of replacement. Joe D’Aries asked for $1,800 to replace the cast iron, even though there was nothing wrong with the plumbing. We chose not to proceed. It is now September 30, 2011 and our project is still not complete. RDS has informed us via e-mail that they will not be completing our job and are refusing to refund our money. RDS is in breach of contract and in violation of consumer law. RDS has left our property with debris and a port a john remains. We have work remaining that we estimate to exceed $100,000 which accounts for the work RDS did not complete for the Certificate of Occupancy, the damage they caused throughout the house which needs to be repaired and the work which was not completed but was paid for. This has
caused us irreparable harm and we are not sure how we will finish our project. On September 23, 2011, we sent an e-mail detailing the partial monies that RDS needed to refund us and informed them of areas that needed dollar amounts to determine a total refund. To date, we have paid Ralph D’Aries and Sons $316,013.00. Our original contract was $292,485. After we took the monies owed to RDS and deducted the work cancelled and the credits, we are owed $60,667.10. This does not include work that was not completed to get a certificate of occupancy and the damage caused by RDS that has not been repaired. Every room has something that is not finished. There is damage in many areas that the contractor is claiming is not his responsibility. We informed RDS that we had wanted them to finish the work to complete the certificate of occupancy and that we would not be going forward with them to complete the back patio/walkway, front & side walkways and our basement and would like a refund for these items. This meeting was in the presence of our architect on September 20, 2011. We have made every payment requested by RDS. We also believe that we have been over charged on our change orders as referenced by our architect’s notes and duplicate charges based on e-mails that we will provide if necessary.

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