Madison - St. Clair Record

Friday, October 18, 2019

Couple sues Imperial-based general contractor alleging shoddy renovation of Glen Carbon home


By Karen Kidd | Jul 15, 2019


EDWARDSVILLE — A Madison County couple is suing a Jefferson County general contractor alleging the defendant performed shoddy renovations on their home the latter part of last year and into this past spring.

In their 15-page lawsuit filed June 24 in Madison County Circuit Court, Terri and Steve Zielonko claim Imperial-based All Phases Construction did work that wasn't up to code, ripped things out that didn’t need to be and allowed the pipes to burst last winter, among other alleged negligent acts.

The Zielonkos and All Phases Construction entered into a contract in August 2018 for home repair and remodeling at the couple's home on Ginger Creek Drive in Glen Carbon. Work began the following month with an expected completion date in six to eight months, according to the lawsuit.

"Although the project ran relatively smoothly until the end of 2018, beginning in 2019, things began to fall apart," the lawsuit states. "All Phases worked at the home for only about one week out of five for the first part of 2019. As a result, work was not being timely completed, and the project fell behind."

The plaintiffs allege the project manager hired by All Phases Construction "did not perform work according to industry standards" which "created the additional expense of having the work corrected, which, in some cases included the cost of bringing items up to code."

The project manager was removed from the job in February but the project continued to fall behind. The matter became more complicated when the Zielonkos sold their other home and needed to move into the house All Phases Construction was working on in mid-May. However, the home was not ready by that time, the suit states.

The plaintiffs claim several things were not timely completed, including HVAC work, plumbing in the home's 4 1/2 baths, flooring, fixtures, showers, tile and toilets.

"In the winter of 2019, the home was essentially empty with no insulation and minimal drywall," the lawsuit states. "Despite its knowledge that a significant cold streak was on its way, All Phases failed to property cover or otherwise protect pipes and failed to turn on the heat in the home within a sufficient amount of time ahead of the freezing weather to prevent a pipe burst."

Pipes in the home later burst, "causing substantial damage," the suit adds. 

The plaintiffs allege All Phases construction has refused to pay for damages and has refused to submit a claim to the insurance provider included in their contract with the Zielonkos.

"In addition, All Phases also unnecessarily demolished a number of items in the home, including - but not limited to - the stair railing, master closet, baseboards, crown molding, window trim and certain drywall," the lawsuit states. "The Zielonkos are also discovering that a number of additional items were not installed correctly or were installed in violation of code."

The Zielonkos alleges breach of contract, negligence, consumer fraud and deceptive business practices and unjust enrichment. The couple is asking for a judgment in excess of $100,000 plus attorney fees, punitive damages and other such relief as the court deems just and proper.

All Phases Construction has not yet responded to the Record's request for comment.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the Zielonkos by attorneys Sarah J. Klebolt and Lauren G. Gamel, principal and associate at Carmody MacDonald P.C. in St. Louis.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 19-L-878

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