This is a story that we all hear too often– a homeowner entered into an agreement with a contractor to remodel his or her home. The contractor signficantly delayed the project, provided substandard work and threatened to record a lien on the property if he is not paid in full. What can a homeowner do in this situations? Can the homeowner cancel the contract without facing adverse legal ramifications?
Pursuant to California Civil Code § 1689.7, “[e]xcept for contracts written pursuant to Sections 7151.2 and 7159.10 of the Business and Professions Code, in a home solicitation contract or offer, the buyer’s agreement or offer to purchase … shall contain in immediate proximity to the space reserved for his or her signature, a conspicuous statement in a size equal to at least 10-point boldface type, as follows: “You, the buyer, may cancel
this transaction at any time prior to midnight of the third business day after the date of this transaction. See the attached notice of cancellation form for an explanation of this right.” A home solicitation contract is one wherein the contractor solicited the project (i.e., cold calls, door-to-door solicitation) even if the homeowner subsequently invited the contractor to their home to execute the home remodeling agreement. Beley v. Municipal Court (1979) 100 Cal.App.3d 5, 9, 160 Cal.Rptr. 508, 510.
In addition to placing the above required notice on the face of the agreement, the contractor must also provide a homeowner with a document entitled “Three-Day Right to Cancel” which contains additional notice provisions. Until the contractor has properly complied with this section the homeowner may cancel the home solicitation contract or offer at any time. Civ. Code § 1689.7(g). “If the seller has performed any services
pursuant to a home solicitation contract or offer prior to its cancellation,
the seller is entitled to no compensation.” Civ. Code § 1689.11. However, the contractor may be entitled to recover the reasonable value of services rendered or materials furnished to the homeowner.
You can learn more about the Home Solicitation Act here http://www.dca.ca.gov/publications/legal_guides/k_9.shtml
Are you dealing with a contractor nightmare? Our office can help. Please contact us at 1 866-644-8011.
****The opinion above is not intended to be legal advice and absolutely does not create any attorney-client relationship between its author and the readers. Please consult an attorney for information or advice specific to your legal issue.****
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