3 On Your Side

Homeowner says unlicensed contractor disappeared with $2K

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This sign led some Valley homeowners to an unlicensed contractor who almost left them high and dry. (Source: 3TV) This sign led some Valley homeowners to an unlicensed contractor who almost left them high and dry. (Source: 3TV)

Lisa Mousa and her family like to spend time in the backyard, but it needs to be spruced up -- more plants, some pavers, grass.

"We would like a more grassy area," Mousa told 3 On Your Side.  "More green before the summer comes."

Mousa said she and her husband started looking around for someone to work on their yard. They thought they might have found the right person when they saw a sign posted at a street corner near Desert Ridge.  In fact, Mousa even took a picture of it and showed it to 3 On Your Side on her cell phone.  

"So, I called him.  I left a message, and he called me back, and he said, 'Would you like to meet?' and I said, 'Yes.'"

The guy on the other end of the line was Ignacio Gomez, an unlicensed contractor.

According to Mousa, Gomez agreed to renovate their backyard but claimed he needed $2,000 up front for materials. They gave it to him.

Mousa said Gomez did minimal work -- removing some grass -- before vanishing.  Mousa says it's now been more than a month, and Gomez won't answer his phone.  

3 On Your Side got involved but all we had to go on was a picture of that sign and a home address. That's where we started.

The guy who answered the door at the house claimed he didn't know Gomez, but as we were leaving, we couldn't help but notice a sign on the side of the house.  It was the same sign Mousa showed us.

So we went back to knock on the door again for some answers.

Showing the sign to that same guy, we told him that was the number Mousa called.

We were eventually put in touch with Gomez, who said he always planned on finishing Mousa's yard and would never think of keeping her money, even though he's been missing for more than a month.
He also promised 3 On Your Side that he would finish the job. 

The very next day, pavers and other materials, including some artificial grass, were delivered. Gomez finished the job in two days.  

The homeowners are thrilled.

Copyright 2016 KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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