Well, you came highly recommended on Angie’s List

John calls me up several months prior, explaining in a voice-mail that he is opening up a shop in the Village and needs someone to help complete some tasks so they can open the store in a few months. Specially, they needed someone to help remove the old flooring. We played phone tag for a while; when we finally connected, he’d explained that they are opening up a clothing shop and that they need me to pull up the laminate-floor currently in the space (I wasn’t sure if he meant old school laminate flooring or engineered wood floors—and I wasn’t sure he knew either). He said it was about 1700 sq-ft and that he was hoping to have it done in the next week or so. So as to not waste anyone’s time, I asked if he had a budget in mind for the project—he said maybe a couple thousand dollars. It sounded like a lot of work for that amount, but then maybe it was something that easily disassembled and so I agreed to meet with him later that day. I walked in and met him and his business partner. My first impression, before we actually said much, was to think to myself—this looks like a lot of flooring. I realized they were engineered hardwoods. “Are they glued down,” I asked. Yes he replied. 1700 sq-ft of glued-down wooden flooring—I was discouraged, knowing his budget. He noted that they had tried to pull it up themselves and an example was in the back. It was about 6 inches and it was broken into fibers. It didn’t look easy but John said it should be easy. I said that this was going to be a lot of work and that mine is a skilled labor service and although we do demo work, in this case, based on their budget and apparent expectations, they would likely want to utilize a different service to pull up the floors; there is ample cheap labor in this city. John said to me that he hears what I am saying, and he doesn’t mean to tell me how to run my business—but couldn’t I just go to the corner and pick up about 4 guys, have them wipe it out real quick using a hydraulic jack-hammer to pry up the floor? (I thought to myself, couldn’t you do that as well?) I said I have a very specific way I do business and that is not the sort of operation I run. Somewhat dejected, John changed his tone a bit and said somewhat pleadingly, “well, you came highly recommended on Angie’s List.” I said, “Yeah, there’s a reason why.” 

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