NORTH ST. LOUIS ( - Vanessa Wrancher dreamt of giving her 1911 home a new look and feel.

Vanessa Wrancher

Vanessa Wrancher 

But the reality is that dream has turned into a construction nightmare.

"It don't take a year, over a year," said Wrancher.

She says she feels duped after paying contractor William McCuller with ‘Home Makeovers by McCuller’ nearly $20,000 from her savings.

"I don't know why I did what I did," Wrancher.

She wanted to make the home perfect now that she’s retired. The plan was to start with the living room, then the bathroom and two bedrooms.

News 4 looked into McCuller’s company and found they have an “F” rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

Many complain he has not finished projects he was paid for.

"I don't know what was wrong with me, I should have stopped then," said Wrancher.

McCuller said he’s aware of the BBB ranking and is trying to improve.

"I never once said that I wasn't going to complete her project, I still am," said McCuller.

He blames winter weather, not enough employees and scheduling conflicts for dragging out Wrancher’s renovation.

McCuller says he want to have all this done in two months.

The BBB urges people to research contractors before signing for a project and it also warns to never give anyone the full amount upfront.

"Do what we call at BBB the rule of thirds, pay a third of the cost of the project at the time of contract, a third when the project is half done and then hold back that other third until it's completely done," said Chris Thetford,” with the BBB.

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