Contractor takes off with nearly $10K

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

Lisa Ingraham has lived in her retirement community for 17 years.

"This is a very, very active and still growing community," she said.

But after 17 years she decided it was time for some renovations. So, she hired a contractor by the name of Jim McLaughlin of Jim's Custom Floors.

Ingraham says McLaughlin completed much of the project and she paid him several different payments totaling nearly $25,000.

"We took out all of the carpet, all of the tile and put in these gorgeous laminate wood floors," she said.

During the final phase of the job, Ingraham says she wanted to add on a few things, including replacing a big arcadia door with some custom French doors.  

The additional work was going to cost $6,300 more so Ingraham says she handed all that money over to McLaughlin.

But the extra work was never finished.

"The completion of those items kept getting pushed for one excuse after another," Ingraham said.

Ingraham says her project never was finished and McLaughlin never did a thing for that $6,300.

She's not the only one, either. Her neighbor Jytte Terns wanted to renovate her laundry room.

She too handed over money, $3,300, to McLaughlin.

But like Ingraham, Terns never heard a word back from the contractor.

"I think the thing that sort of bothers me the most is he's had an effect on my trust level," Terns said.

3 On Your Side contacted McLaughlin, who told us over the phone he had an excuse for running out on the women who paid him.

McLaughlin said the company filed bankruptcy.

However, 3 On Your Side checked public records and found no record of a bankruptcy filing.

So, we to McLaughlin's address listed on public documents.

No one ever came to the door and we were contacted later by his family saying he doesn't live at the Glendale home any longer.

But the women say he's somewhere, living on a total of $10,000 that they both gave him.

"At least to get the word out that this particular individual is not to be trusted," Ingraham said.