March 4, 2016 AsktheBuilder Weekend Warrior

I’ve got some killer content for you to review and a video below you should watch for this weekend.

Some of you already have great weather and can do concrete repairs.

Others, well it’s just about five weeks away when Old Man Winter will be plodding his way back to the North Pole.

Before we get to that content I want to share a very important message that was brought to you via Emanuel Oakes who lives in Wilkinsburg, PA.

This is a Do-NOT-Do-This Story.

Emanuel hired a concrete contractor to replace his driveway. He trusted the job would be done right.

Where Emanuel’s driveway ends at the street, there’s a common sloped concrete curb.

For some reason, the contractor made the driveway 1.5 inches higher than the top edge of the curb.

Emanuel did not like this. I don’t think anyone would. Why it happened is beyond human comprehension.

The first mistake Emanuel made, and perhaps he was out of town, was that he failed to inspect the forms after they were set but before the concrete truck arrived.

He would have been able to see the flat 2x board that was laying on top of the curb to act as a dam for the concrete.

But he didn’t see it and the concrete was poured. Or if he did see it, he didn’t think it through as to what the finished height of the concrete would be.

Fast forward.

Emanuel went to an attorney to sue this contractor.

He contacted me today asking me if I do expert witness work.

I replied, “Yes, I’ve done it for about fifteen years. The most recent job I was in Antigua. It was a case involving the roof of the Brazilian Ambassador’s home.”

I told Emanuel that he needs to stop all he’s doing and do one simple thing.

Measure back ten feet from the curb – or go to the closest control joint in the slab that’s parallel to the curb – saw cut the new concrete at this line, remove the concrete between the cut and the curb and re-pour it so the concrete is flush with the top of the curb and meets the existing slab at the saw cut.

I said, not knowing all the figures, that he could do this for possibly 10 percent of what he’s spending – or will spend – on attorneys, experts, etc.

But here’s the most important thing I asked Emanuel:

“Emanuel, when you went to the attorney the first time did you ask him the most important question of all? Here it is:

‘If I win the lawsuit, (and that’s a long shot) do I get my money right there in the courtroom?’ “

The answer is NO.

In fact, you may never get the money if you win a construction lawsuit.

The second most-important question in situations like this that you ask the attorney in the first ten minutes of the meeting is:

“How many lawsuits like this have you prosecuted that have actually gone to trial?”

The answer is LOW. Probably less than five percent.

This means you SETTLE with the other party and bandage your wounds to stop the financial bleeding.

The third most important question you ask in the first fifteen minutes of meeting with the attorney is:

“What’s the average price a person like me spends until the matter is settled?”

If the attorney waffles or refuses to give you an answer, immediately stand up and walk out of her / his office.

I’m sharing all of this with you for a reason.

The legal pathway is one paved with gold – gold from your bank account.

Now, with all that said, if you’re considering legal action against a contractor I can tell you over the phone some of the stories about cases I’ve worked on.

You can take away from those stories knowledge that will help you make great decisions on what to do.

I’m not allowed to give you legal advice, but I’m allowed to tell you stories.

CLICK HERE if you want me to tell you stories.

Repair Concrete Video

CLICK HERE to watch a very important video showing you how to repair cracks in concrete.

CLICK HERE to BUY the products I used in the video.

Fencing Columns

Here are a few past columns that will help you if you’re thinking about fencing around your yard.

CLICK HERE to see a photo of a wood fence I built for Kathy at our last home. She LOVED this fence.

CLICK HERE to see how to set fence posts. This one has a CLOSE UP shot of the fence Kathy loved.

CLICK HERE to discover privacy fencing.

I have many many more columns on fencing.

Use the SEARCH ENGINE at the bottom of each page at my site.



and behold the power of

I’ve got a SPECIAL TREAT for you on Sunday.

Are you thinking about building a new home and do you want to have a quick and easy way to ESTIMATE what it will cost?

I’ve got that for you on Sunday.

Tim Carter

Founder –

Do It Right, Not Over!


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