Today (Saturday) I was out running errands and I got one of those phone calls that stops you dead in your tracks.  I had run to the bank, literally about 10 minutes from my house and before I can even get there the phone rings.

I answer it and the voice on the other end says “There’s been an accident at your house!”… Let me back up.  As I was getting ready to walk out the door #3 comes in and hubby was at work.  Our lawn maintenance company was doing our yard.  Our lawn maintenance guy has done our yard for like 12 or 15 years.  He mowed at our other house before we bought this house.  I used to babysit his kids when they were in elementary school.  I’ve known him through 3 wives!

So, anyway, as I’m pulling out of the driveway he’s on his mower and his son (whom I used to babysit and is now in his twenties) was working the weed eater over near our mailbox.  I waved and smiled and left.  So, when he called me less than 10 minutes later panic shot through my heart.   I couldn’t imagine what kind of accident happened that quickly.

I was so freaked that all I could stammer out was “OK?” as a question.  He then went on to explain that his son had been using the weed eater by the front door in our “rock garden” and had “kicked up” a rock and shattered our front storm door.  He was calling to warn me to tell everyone not to use the front door because of the broken glass.

Of course I’m thinking he means the glass that might be left over after the clean up but when I get home I realize that he hasn’t even bothered to clean up the glass.  I’m sorry but that kind of bothered me.  When I talked to him again I said “You didn’t clean up the glass?”  And he said “Well,
no, I didn’t really have anything with me to deal with it but its safety glass so it shouldn’t be that hard to clean up. And from now on I won’t be able to cut near your front area because of the rock garden.”

Am I wrong to be perturbed by this?  If I had broken someone’s front door, no matter the reason, I think even if I didn’t have the means with me to clean it up I would at least either knock on the door and ask for a broom and dustpan and garbage bag or I’d have gone to the store and bought whatever I needed to clean it up.  And he only lives about 3 or 4 miles from me so for that matter he could have gone home and gotten what he needed.

He called me later (actually he tried to call hubby to apologize but hubby left his cell phone at home because he forgot to charge it) and said that he’s left the money I had left him under the mat and I could “take it off the cost of replacing the door”.  Then he told me his son was actually edging the walk and kicked up the rock.  I’m really at a loss as to how to handle this.  I’ve known this guy for a long time and it’s really not the way I would have thought he would have handled this.

Now we have to buy another storm door and pay someone to put it in since hubby is not handy with stuff like that.  And clean up all that glass!  Last time the guy who hung it had a heck of a time and it took him like half a day.  I’m not sure he’d be willing to do it again.  And he hung two doors for about $150.  The door itself cost about $300.  And the guy who hung it came out to our house from about 40 miles away as a favor to hubby.  Not sure if he’d be willing to do that again for one door.

Don’t get me wrong. I am very thankful that no one was hurt.  And the glass is just a material possession and can be replaced.  I guess I’m just being snarky but I can’t help the way I feel.

I’ll leave you guys with the pics.  Please feel free to dispense any advice on how I should handle this.

From inside looking out

From the outside

Pile of glass outside the door

closer view of the hole

Glass on inside of the threshold of door

closer view of the shards still stuck in the frame

looking out from inside

bottom of dooe


About pegbur7

South of the Mason/Dixon Line
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8 Responses to Broken

  1. Spot says:

    First, let me say that I’m so relieved that the “accident” wasn’t somebody in your family being harmed! That’s what my mind jumped to at the title!

    Second, the man is being extremely unprofessional. He should have not only cleaned up the glass, but offered to pay for the whole thing! You pay him to do your yard, if one of his employees (his son) breaks something- its on him to pay for it. And he should be rewarding you for loyalty not taking advantage of your nice nature. What a piece of work! I sure wouldn’t have him do my lawn anymore!

    Will your homeowner’s insurance cover the cost of the door and the hanging of it?


    • pegbur7 says:

      Our homeowners has a $1000 deductible so that wouldn’t work. Trust me… I was not happy spending over an hour to clean up the mess his son made. We had to pull the rest of the glass out before we could sweep it up. I really was resenting him the whole time I was sweeping it up. I’m not happy about the way he handled this at all.

  2. Ron says:

    WOW…I’m looking at these photos and thinking, “Thank god nobody was standing by the door when that rock hit it!

    Well, I know you’ve known this guy for a long time so it makes confrontation uncomfortable, but I’m sorry….he should pay for the storm door replacement. And if he were any kind of professional service provider, he should have immediately said, I’ll have it replaced for you, pronto!

    ” take it off the cost of replacing the door”

    Excuse me?!?!

    Honestly, I would ask him to pay for the whole thing because he should. That’s his responsibility.


    • pegbur7 says:

      You’re right. It does make it uncomfortable. And the way he tried to make it look like it was our fault for having a rock garden ticked me off. I think he shouldn’t have charged us at all not just saying “take it off the cost of the door replacement”. He should go get the door himself and replace it himself. I’m still irritated with how he handled it…. or should I say MIShandled it?

  3. terrepruitt says:

    Well, the yard maintenance guy’s insurance should cover it. That is why people who do work on other people’s houses get bonded and insured, right? They have that type of coverage so that when there are “accidents” they can take care of the customer without affecting themselves (and their customers) too much.

    Accidents happen and when there isn’t something in place to make certain that things are handled properly, yeah, things get “mishandled” and people get hurt and feel uncorfortable. A long term relationship can be ruined because a procedure was not in place to handle accidents.

    Bummer that you are in this position. Broken door, having to pay for it, having to get it fixed, feeling betrayed . . . . well, that might be a strong term, but you mentioned “it’s really not the way I would have thought he would have handled this.” So to me it is a form of “betrayal”. It certainly isn’t good customer service.

    So maybe contacting him and asking him to have his inusrance cover it is the way to go?

    • pegbur7 says:

      To be honest, I don’t even know if he has insurance. I mean, he’s been doing our yard for so long that we’ve used him since he first started his business as a “side” job. I guess I’ll have to let hubby talk to him on that one because right now I’m still perturbed about having to get up all that glass myself!

  4. Ergh. Personally knowing someone makes it always uncomfortable. He did the damage. He should pay for the repair. End of story.

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