Castle owners in Eureka says contractor skipped out on work

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by Mike Colombo / News 4 and KMOV.com staff

KMOV.com

Posted on February 11, 2013 at 6:29 PM

Updated Monday, Feb 11 at 6:42 PM

(KMOV) – Living in a castle may seem like a dream to most people, but for a Eureka couple, it’s become an ugly reality.

Brandon Smith and his wife bought the Stuart Castle property in Eureka last summer.

But soon he realized owning it might be a royal pain.

“You can see the quality of craftsmanship,” he said. “Not exactly holding up very well.”

Last year, Smith hired contractor Gilbert Alvarez to repair crumbling stone and brick work across the entire property.

“The agreement was everything was going to look new, they were going to touch every single point on the house that needed work,” said Smith.

But after the workers left, Smith started noticing problems with the bricks.

“They were supposed to replace bricks and they just stuck mortar and concrete in it,” said Smith.

It was the same with the stone entry

“This whole section had stone in it, and instead of replacing it they just filled it with concrete,” said Smith.

And the giant tower.

“You can see when you walk all four sides of the tower there’s about 10 of those that have not been touched at all,” said Smith.

What really angers smith is that he says Alvarez assured him he could do the work.

“When we went through the house nothing was mentioned, said everything was going to be new and once they got the money, they were gone,” said Smith.

But Alvarez tells a different story. He says the contract clearly states it was “not” a complete face-lift.

And as for the claims that he verbally promised to do more?

“Again, I can’t undo the mistakes of the previous contractor, whoever built that building,” said Alvarez.

It looks like it will end up a royal stale-mate. But Alvarez did make me a promise.

“I don’t intend to walk away from the job, I want to try to, make him complete, make him happy, as much as I can,” said Alvarez.

 

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