A judge has ordered that damages be paid to the owner of a third-floor condo in this building, following ‘beyond deficient’ renovations. (Google Streetview image)

$63,000 for failed White Rock renovation

Judge deems work on condo ‘beyond deficient’

A White Rock woman has been awarded more than $63,000 in damages in connection with home renovations a judge has described as “beyond deficient.”

“This is not simply a case where a corporate entity enters a contract to perform renovations, and those renovations are not done to the homeowner’s satisfaction,” Justice B.J. Brown concludes in reasons for judgment that were posted online Sept. 22.

“The failure in this case is so extreme as to amount to fraud.”

According to the court document, Deanna Mary Koltai sought damages against Dwayne Hauser and Hauser Custom Homes Ltd. in connection with renovations to a condo she bought on Vidal Street in December 2015.

She alleged breach of contract and negligence, claiming, among other things, that the defendants failed to perform the work properly and in a timely manner, failed to comply with regulations and removed a load-bearing wall without proper inspection or support.

Koltai told the court that the parties had a part-verbal, part-written agreement regarding who would do the work; Hauser’s expertise and oversight of the project; Hauser’s guarantee of quality, code compliance and fitness of the work; and that all necessary permits and authorizations would be obtained.

On that basis, they had agreed on a $84,997.50 project that was to be completed in April 2016.

Koltai told the court she paid $93,000, but that by mid-May 2016, it became apparent the work was not being performed to her satisfaction. She notified the defendants that she considered the contract breached; the following day, the defendants gave notice that no further work would be done on the renovation.

Koltai testified that she learned of problems with the project when a friend who went to the condo in late April to remove its stove and fridge reported to her that the renovation was “nowhere near completed and that it was a horrible disaster.”

She paid $58,000 to another contractor to complete the work. That individual testified that “all of the work was done inadequately and improperly,” Brown writes.

At trial, Hauser “acknowledged that the renovations did not go as planned,” Brown states.

He told the court he had advised Koltai of problems being experienced with the ceiling and floors, but that he did not expect them to be as extensive as they were.

“There were problems. He said that he felt like ‘we were getting in over our heads.’ He acknowledged that ‘I totally screwed up on this project,’” Brown writes.

Hauser submitted that he should not be personally liable for damages and that the contract had been with the company – for which he is the sole shareholder – only. Brown disagreed.

“He acknowledged that the whole job was unacceptably performed,” Brown states.

“He acknowledged that none of the work done would have passed code.”

She also notes that in cross-examination, Hauser said he did not tell Koltai “that he had been subject to nine different lawsuits or that he was paying off judgments.”

Brown found that the company breached the contract, and that Hauser was personally liable for damages.

Just Posted

New Surrey Police force ‘swallowing up’ city’s funds, Annis says

City councillor says draft city budget shows new force coming at expense of ‘everything else’ in the city

Panthers storm to playoff victory over Hyacks

Cloverdale’s Lord Tweedsmuir stuns New West in big win in B.C. high school football AAA playoff semifinals

VIDEO: Collision in Surrey breaks axle off SUV

Two people were reportedly sent to hospital

Students spend night at White Rock shelter

Students hear powerful stories about homelessness on the Semiahmoo Peninsula

Langara College names $25,000 scholarship named for Seaquam alum Kevin Hanson

As a decorated athlete, student, instructor and coach, Hanson’s impact at the college spans 35 years

Teen with cancer whose viral video urged Canadians to vote has died, uncle tweets

Maddison Yetman had been looking forward to voting in her first federal election since junior high school

Abbotsford police chief mulls more enforcement of homeless lawbreakers

‘When all else has failed we have to hold people accountable,’ Police Chief Mike Serr tells council

Striking Vancouver hotel workers, employer reach ‘tentative’ agreement

Employees of the Rosewood Hotel Georgia have been out at picket lines since talks broke off on Sept. 21

Environmental and animal rights activists chain themselves to front doors of Kelowna bank

The group is protesting Interior Savings Credit Union’s support of Kelowna Ribfest

Cold, stormy winter forecast across much of Canada, The Weather Network predicts

In British Columbia temperatures will be slightly above normal and precipitation will be just below normal

Cell phone tickets worse tax grab than speed limits, SenseBC says

Distracted driving statistics questioned as B.C. tickets pile up

VIDEO: Giants toppled by visiting Hurricanes

Sunday afternoon play at Langley Events Centre saw a team from Lethbridge defeat Vancouver, 6-0

Security camera records hatchet attack on Langley store owner

Target escaped uninjured, but was ‘upset’ by incident

Rowing Canada, UVic investigate celebrated coach for harassment, abuse

Lily Copeland says she felt intimidated and trapped by Williams

Most Read