Local remodeling company fails to finish jobs; owner claims he was hospitalized

Investigative

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) — 10 On Your Side is investigating a local remodeling company.  

Over the past weeks, several customers of Veteran’s Home Remodeling reached out to us. They say they’ve paid thousands of dollars, but the work was never completed.

“This house was built in the late 1970s,” said Chesapeake’s Dee Butler.

Dee and Wes Butler haven’t lived in their Chesapeake house since it was built, but after 15 years of calling it home, it was time for a change.

“We wanted to modernize it,” she added.

The retired sailors saved for years.

“We had been putting it off and putting it off,” Butler said.

They decided to use a company that prides itself on the military. That company is Veteran’s Home Remodeling in Chesapeake.

“This project was started on January 28 and it was supposed to be completed February 15,” Butler added.

Butler says the job is far from done and what was done wasn’t done right. She kept reaching out to the company’s owner, Victor Habgood. She wanted a refund, but it seemed as if her requests were falling on deaf ears.

“I have constant headaches, because I have spent $17,000 for a bathroom I can’t use,” she said.

“How do I feel?” Norfolk’s Juanita Copeland asked. “I’m not happy, but I do want my kitchen done.”

The kitchen in Copeland’s home is still unusable. She signed a contract with Veteran’s Home in January.

“I actually gave him a check for $5,800 and some change,” Copeland said. “Originally my job was going to be $7,000.”

Months later, the work still isn’t done. Copeland has already shelled out another $5,000 for a new company to finish the job. She wonders if she’ll ever see the money she gave to Habgood.

“My life has been chaos,” Copeland added. “I hired him, because I wanted the job done quickly, and me not being able to use my kitchen sink is driving me up a wall.”

10 On Your Side went looking for Habgood. We found no one at the Chesapeake business, only a posted note asking customers to call for an appointment.

No one came to the door at Habgood’s Chesapeake home. But shortly after that, we got a call from the owner. He ended up not going on camera, but sent us a statement.

“I, a disabled Veteran, myself, unexpectedly had to have an unplanned serious back surgery that resulted in hospitalization,” Habgood wrote. “As a result, I was unable to personally address the issues that occurred during my absence. I did my best to oversee my employees and all ongoing jobs while I was in the hospital and recovering, but it was not good enough. As the owner, I take full responsibility and I am doing my best to make everyone whole.”

Habgood says he is disappointed. We did however find customers who stand by the company’s work.

“Our project was done in three days and it wasn’t a small project,” said customer Yvette Isler.

Isler used Veteran’s Home Remodeling last November.  

“From the front desk all the way through the end of the process they were very professional,” Isler added.

“Our sincere desire and commitment is to satisfy our customers and our employees,” Habgood said.  “Currently, we are working tirelessly trying to correct any issues that exist. We want to make it clear that it is our absolute commitment to satisfy all customers and to have every job completed and all requested refunds returned within a reasonable timeframe. At this time, we can only ask for patience and grace to allow us to make everything right. We are blessed to have the support of our friends, family, past clients, and several other companies who have reached out to help us get back on solid ground. Going forward we want to focus on quality, communication, and strong supervision. Our focus now is to rebuild the company correctly and earn back the trust of our community. I am sorry for the disruption that my surgery has caused and look forward to continuing to serve our customers with excellence and professionalism that Veterans Home Remodeling has been known for over the years.”

Habood told 10 On Your Side on Wednesday that he plans to refund not only customers, but also employees who are owed back pay. He said the refunds have already begun.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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