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  • The original bid was $14,000 to refinish 5,000 square feet of concrete floors. We started work on half the building, but he had me pay 50% down on the entire building. He told me to paint the walls before he did the floors so that I would not accidentally drip paint on the finished floors.
    First he came in and poured a solvent on 50% of the floor in the room at our main entry, which turned the mastic into a tar-like slippery, sticky mess. Then he left the solvent on the floor for a month, so that we had to place boards on the walkways and work areas. For that month he did not return calls or emails. Finally, after many complaints, he came in and poured kitty litter-like granuals on the solvent to absorb it, and left the kitty litter for me to clean up.
    When the solvent didn't work, he purchased a large commercial floor grinder with an attached commercial vac, then he charged me an extra $3,000 because the job was taking longer than he expected and his expenses were higher than expected. By this point we have now paid him $10,000. Apparently he had never used a floor grinder before. He spent more than an hour on the phone trying to figure out how to use it. Then he didn't attach the vacuum or wet the floor to control dust. Whe stopped by to check on his progress.The dust was so thick it rolled out of the doors like smoke and left piles of dust several inches thick outside the doors. We were shocked to see he wasn't wearing any kind of a respirator. We told him he should at least use one of our dust masks before he kills himself. His employee was smarter than he was, and brought his own respirator.
    The dust storm continued for about a month, which means we couldn't get into the building at all to work. When he finally finished grinding and staining the floors, we found we had been left with a HUGE mess. He didn't cover the lower walls with plastic, so all the newly painted walls were destroyed. It took two coats of primer and two coats of paint to cover the dirt, scuff marks and floor stain he got on the walls. He also bumped a pipe in the bathroom with the grinder, and caused a leak. We came in the next day to find the bathroom flooded and water seeping under the walls and soaking up into the new drywall. We had to hire a plumber to repair the leak. Everything in the building was covered in an inch of concrete dust. Even closed cabinets and drawers were filled with concrete dust.
    Finally a year later, we are finished with construction, and are ready for him to seal the joints, cap a couple holes, and wax the floors. The stained floors look horrible. There are black stains everywhere from the old mastic, and every corner still has mastic because his grinder couldn't reach into the corners. We decided not to hire him for the other half of the building, but we still need him to finish what he started.
    After two weeks of calling, texting and/or emailing him daily, we have not heard back from him. His voice and name are still on his voice mail, and his email address is apparently still active. His business Facebook page is also still active.
    This week his former employee showed up asking for proof that he worked on my building. Roger Barnes never paid his employee for the job. He told his employee that he would pay him with the he billed me $3,000 he billed me for extra expenses.
    From what this employee and other contractors that know Roger Barnes, Iowa City Concrete Finishers is very poorly managed, and he often leaves jobs unfinished because he can't pay for labor or materials. He spends the down payment for a job on other bills, and then has to take the down payment from his next job to pay for the job he is currently doing. If he doesn't have the next job lined up, he can't finish the job he is doing. He's robbing Peter to pay Paul.
    ....and I'll be seeing him in court.

    UPDATE 11/14/13  It appears the owner is changing the name of the company to avoid the complaints against him. I checked the Facebook page for Iowa City Concrete Finishers, and they are now doing business under the name "Creative Concrete By RDB".
    - Deborah V.
  • unknown
    - Daniel G.
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