Home Depot Guts Your Kitchen, Never Comes Back

Home Depot has been fined $750 by Westchester County, NY for operating without a license after one of their subcontractors allegedly gut the kitchen of a resident, dumped the debris on the customer’s driveway, then never showed up again.

The customer further complains that he paid Home Depot $26,362 to have his deck removed and replaced, but they never showed up to do the work. From Lower Hudson Online:

[Todd] Ruffalo said he paid the Home Depot in Port Chester $15,917 last October to rebuild his kitchen.

He said a worker from a subcontracting company demolished his kitchen, but never returned.

Ruffalo said he got no response from numerous phone calls and letters to Home Depot.

“You can only be ignored for so long,” he said. “You get so frustrated.”

He said he and his family were without a kitchen for more than two months before he hired another contractor to do the work for $30,623.

Gaccione [Westchester Department of Consumer Protection spokesperson] said the company credited Ruffalo for $2,140 and offered to reimburse him for another $4,870, if he would sign a waiver promising not to take further legal action against the company. Ruffalo turned that offer down.

The company claimed Ruffalo was unhappy with the subcontractor and ordered the kitchen work stopped, Gaccione said.

This is both sad and hilarious. Poor Todd.

Home Depot fined for lack of license [Lower Hudson Online]
(Photo:Michael L)


Edit Your Comment

  1. bonzombiekitty says:

    He should call that guy from “Holmes on Homes”

  2. chutch says:

    Now I know the old joke is that if you go “Down South” after you die you’ll be able to find all the lawyers you need. If this is true, the contractors are almost all going down with them to help build the gates of hades. I find it very funny that I know more lawyers that I have a much better opinion of than contractors.

    My family has had a similar problem with contractors from around here. You never know when you are putting money down on a person that will be there the next day. The best advice I can give is buy the supplies yourself and only pay after work as been completed. This is what finally worked for us.

  3. mopar_man says:


    That guy is an absolute dickhead. According him, every contractor is out to screw you over and do a shitty job. While some are like that, most are honest. I saw him at a home show once and there were a group of contractors that were ready to beat him to death in the parking lot after he basically told the audience that all the contractors at that home show weren’t trustworthy.

  4. Toof_75_75 says:

    Imagine that, Home Depot sucked it up again…

  5. pinkbunnyslippers says:

    Can I ask why someone paid $15,917k upfront before work was even completed on a home? Am I just stupid, or is that how this normally works??

  6. @PinkBunnySlippers:
    Normally, from all the contract work my dad has done (yes, he’s an “evil” contractor) I’ve seen the average pay-out work like this:
    One third up front. One third upon initial completion of the project. One third after the final walkthrough/touch-ups are done.
    Any decent contractor who believes in their work will likely take that kind of offer. The third up front helps pay for immediate materials, labor costs, etc. The third at initial completion is a good way most contractors/home-owners can agree that the job is 90% there. The last third is saved till the very end so that the home-owner can verify all cleanup was done, all the little touch-ups that happen post-job are completed, and everything is satisfactory.
    At least that’s how my dad does it and, well, he’s been doing side work contracting for over 20 years so he’s doing SOMETHING right. :)

  7. TechnoDestructo says:


    He doesn’t sound too evil to me. Hell, haven’t a lot of consumerist stories on contractors included advice on how to find a contractor like your dad?

  8. jamesBrauer66 says:

    When we installed granite countertops, we looked at the BORG (big orange retail giant) but took a pass. They will provide an estimate for the installation, but leave it open ended for the cost of leveling the counters – which is at the discretion of their contractor. To me this sounds like a blank check for the contractor, and based on a co-workers experience is how it works out.

    After getting a good reference, we called somebody else who did the work the original estimate. Paid half when they showed up to start work, and half when it was done.

  9. I recently set out to purchase a washer/dryer for my new apartment. Because I was looking at an unusually small (and unusually expensive) Bosch model, I did my homework. Although I could have gotten the unit at Home Depot, I checked around with some friends who had bought appliances there and had worked with their outside contractors. I was warned never to use Home Depot’s services for anything that needed to be contracted out because the company has said (at least in the appliance realm) that they are not necessarily liable for the mistakes their contractors make or the work they don’t do.

    Needless to say, I took what I thought would be Consumerist’s advice and ordered the unit from a local appliance store that had been in business for 60 years. Not only did I get the unit for a price comparable to the “big box” retailers, but it was sold, delivered, and installed perfectly and professionally. I’m not sure if the Home Depot contracting horror stories would’ve come true, but I certainly didn’t want to take the chance!

  10. raindogx says:

    My wife wanted Home Depot to replace our kitchen flooring. We had adhesive tile. They told her at the store we had to remove it ourselves before they came. This job that took several days to complete. When the man came to measure I had all but 6 or 7 tiles removed. He threw a fit and demanded that I remove the remaining tiles immediately. He then told us a date and time when they would come do the job. No one showed up. My wife called several times. No one seemed to know what was going on. The following day she was finally told that our job had been cancelled, although no one had bothered to tell us. She demanded to know why. The answer: when the guy came to measure he noticed that the floor was sticky; they don’t do work on sticky floors. So we were left with no kitchen floor for weeks while we looked for a private contractor, and then waited for him to be available. It was self-evident that if we had adhesive tile the floor undeneath would be sticky. Surely all kitchen floors are sticky underneath. And if that were really the case why didn’t the man tell us when he came to measure? Whatever their real motives, Home Depot screwed us over, and didn’t even take the time to tell us they were screwing us over. I will never do business with this company or even set foot in one of their stores again.