Freeport family: Contractor scammed us out of thousands for work on fire-damaged home
A Nassau family that wanted to give their home a makeover says they were instead taken advantage of by a crooked contractor.
Stephen Bell, of Freeport, says they hired a restoration company to repair his mother's home after an electrical fire back in 2017.
The family says they paid Restoration Management in Freeport $300,000 from his mother's insurance, but the work apparently stopped soon after it started. After more than three years, Bell says the work still isn't done.
Bell says the workers stopped showing up, and the work that was done wasn't good. He's demanding things be redone.
"This is the worst thing that could ever happen, after living in this house for over 35 years and then going through a traumatic experience like a house fire and losing everything you worked for," says Bell. "And then to have somebody basically take your livelihood from you, that's the worst thing that could happen to any human being."
The family says they've taken the problem to the Nassau District Attorney's Office and the Office of Consumer Affairs.
Bell's family might not be the only one affected by the contractor, as the commissioner of Consumer Affairs says, "We have five complaints on file against Restoration Management. Two are closed and three are open and currently under investigation. The department does not comment on open investigations."
Stephen Rivers, owner of Restoration Management, says in an email that the Bell family is asking for cabinets, flooring and bathrooms that didn't exist before the fire and insurance won't cover it.
Bell says this is not the case.
"Do your research on any contractor that you would bring into your home to do any kind of work," he says.