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Former Calgary renovation company under review for alleged unfair or misleading practices

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WATCH ABOVE: A Calgary renovation company is being reviewed by Service Alberta for alleged unfair or misleading practices. Tomasia DaSilva has the story of one woman who alleges her dream renovation turned into a nightmare – Jan 28, 2019

A former Calgary renovation company is being reviewed by Service Alberta for alleged unfair and misleading practices resulting from complaints filed in November and December.

Square One Designs (for Kitchens and Baths) Calgary, owned by Greg Brown, ceased operations back in October after Brown said his lease was terminated.

Now, one of its former customers has reached out to Global News to complain their renovation was not finished, and they’re owed thousands of dollars.

“At least $30,000 between what I had to pay the second contractor and living costs and everything,” homeowner Natasha Foy said.

Natasha and her husband Shea hired the company to do a massive $140,000 renovation on their home.

It was supposed to be completed by March  31, 2018. But Natasha said the work kept getting delayed. She said she contacted Brown repeatedly and was promised the reno would get finished, but it wasn’t.

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While she was dealing with the delays, her husband’s brain cancer came back.

“Things got worse and worse and worse, ” Natasha said. “I begged him (the contractor) to get it done so that my husband could see it.”

Shea never did see the renovation — he died that June.

“After all that time and saving and planning, he never gets to see it,” Natasha said.

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By the end of October, the renovation was still not completely done, so she hired another company to finish it.

Brown issued the following statement to Global News:

“Ms. Foy formally terminated our services (Oct. 26)… released me from any obligation to complete the project. We were about 90 per cent or greater complete… had staff or trades in her residence nearly every day for months. This was not a case where we took her money and ran off.”

Brown said the delays were due to tradespeople — both third-party tradespeople and employees. He also said the company took many steps to correct what he called the “incompetence” which he witnessed regularly.

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Natasha asked Brown for $5,000 to help offset the costs of hiring another contractor and having to move out of her residence while the work was underway. Brown agreed to the amount but said in light of the economic downturn in Calgary, he would need some time to get the funds.

Brown said Natasha agreed to that, but she said it quickly became obvious she wasn’t going to get any money.

Natasha also denied the reno was nearly complete.

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Square One Designs’ website shows two other locations — one in Regina and the other in Kelowna — but the website also says those locations are independently owned and operated.

Brown said he does not own the other two locations and added that although his business in Calgary has ceased operations, it has and will continue to fulfil contract obligations to the “best of our ability” for customers willing to work with them.

Natasha said it’s too late for her and Shea, and she added it’s not about the stress or the money.

“There’s no price that you can put on the fact that Shea will never see this. He took that from me. He took that from him.”

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Service Alberta confirms it is reviewing eight complaints to determine if there were any potential breaches of consumer protection laws, as well as to inform the most appropriate course of action.

Consumers who have an incident to report or wish to learn how to file a consumer complaint are encouraged to call 1-877-427-4088.

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