People's Court today, Friday, 12/18

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A case on the people's court TV show was interesting.
It was about repairs to an "antique stove". A nuddke-aged couple bought a house and the stove came with it. He was wearing a tie and I think she had on a dress. . I like antique machinery so I was esp. interested. It turned out the so-called antique was from 1965. For me that's just a stove, and a pretty modern one, since our firrst gas stove was from 1945, and other than a timer, I don't see much difference, between 1945 and now.
But he wanted it changed from natural gas to propane, and apparently there is only one company in 5 states that concentrated on stuff like this. (I thought she said 5 states but her webpage only says she does business in 3 states. I guess both could be true, if there's no one to do this in the other two states!)
He lives two hours from her shop. She tells him on the phone that it's $80 / hour travel time (for two people) x 4 hours = 320 dollars right off the bat, and $90 minimum when she's there, but for some reason he has doubts AFTER she gets there. Then he keeps saying that he thought she woudl use a kit, but she didn't. He calls his wife and she says not to go through with it (though she may not know about the 410 he already owes). The stove lady tells him, in his words, that she can't take responsibility for the repair unless she does the whole thing***, and he says that meant he was scared and forced into having her do it. ***Well, duh.
I"m not sure what all she did, probably cleaned it, and surely replaced 3? 5 jets for a 4 burner/1 oven stove. What kit did the guy want her to use? Something they sell online I think, with jets and a brush?? And other things she already owns?
She writes up an invoice that totals 800, he signs it and gives her a check, she uses her phone to take video of the invoice and his check and of his saying "good job", then she goes back home and straight to the bank, since they have the same bank, and checks if payment is good, and by then, 2 hours later, it's already been stopped.
Westchester County has some lower middle-income and middle middle-income areas, but all in all it's one of the richest counties in the country. No wonder she's expensive. Get a price before you let someone come out.
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On 12/19/2015 9:55 AM, Micky wrote:

Based on what you write, the repair people were totally up front and honest. The customer was totally agreeable, and approved the whole thing. Customer needs to pay for what customer asked, agreed, and signed off.
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On Sat, 19 Dec 2015 10:12:29 -0500, Stormin Mormon

It seemed that way to me too. I should have included that she won.
She said that she used to work in finance, but she gave that up and customers are a lot more appreciative than her boss ever was. (plus I'm sure she makes more money, although having one's own business is always a risk. Her father was in the stove repair business and after he died, she quit her job, re-opened his business, learned how to do the parts she didn't know, and has trained 3 other guys, she says.
She says her renovated stoves may last another 30 years. I would say 60!
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On 12/19/2015 9:55 AM, Micky wrote:

Hey, I'm from 1945 and yes, some think I'm an antique. So, what was the outcome? Seems like they should be able to get the money as they did the work. Customer sounds like an asshole though, bad case of buyer's remorse. Could have bought a new stove for that money.
Sounds a bit high though. Travel time and one hour is $410m so, WTF did they do for the other $390?
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She won. She brought all three of her employees to "court", even though only one was there. That compares to a lot of bosses who don't bring any employees, even the one who was the only one to talk to the customer. (Then there are all those people who don't have pictures or texts because, they say, they lost or broke the phone, or just got a new one. Apparently they just make that excuse up or no one thinks to transfer photos and texts from one phone to the next.)

Good question. Most cases take 20 minutes minus maybe 4 minutes for advertising, to show, but they're longer than that before editing.
In their renovation, I think a lot of what they do is clean. Maybe they cleaned?
They also paint, but I'm sure they didn't paint. ;-)
This page has pictures of a bunch of the stoves they did. Skip past the moving part at the top. There was a better page with more stoves but I can't find it again. http://www.belgroveappliance.com/testimonials.php
The web page also cites www.stovelist.com an unrelated page that has parts for stoves and whole stoves.
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On 12/19/2015 11:01 AM, Micky wrote:

The old stove really look sharp! I can see restoring some of them. Ovens may not have the controls, but a good burner just makes a flame and gets things hot. Not a lot of fancy technology needed to fry and egg.
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Sounds bad it would take 2 people, but that was what was agreed on. The extra money sounds sort of like the way I got ripped off this summer.
The heat pump quit and I called a place and they said it would be $ 90 to come out. That was fine and the fellow was here for about 10 minuits or less and said a capacitor was bad. Then he said that capacitor was $ 340 for it and to install it, the companies standard charge for that. As it was an outside unit and it takes all of 5 minuits to install a $ 50 part ( the most at retail it should cost and about $ 15 on line) I thought it was a ripoff, but paid anyway. While he was here, he talked me into a cleaning job for $ 100 which seemed reasonable to me and I learned a lot while he was doing it.
This is not a high dollar area as many jobs pay from $ 10 to $ 20 an hour with $ 20 being on the high end. Most are $ 15 or less.
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On Sat, 19 Dec 2015 13:38:32 -0500, "Ralph Mowery"

I was in a similar situation when I was 18 y.o. I'd been in college, out of town, for 4 months when the clock radio started humming. It was about 6 years old. Made in 1958, tubes of course. (Telechron clock iirc.)
I took it to the only guy I knew of, even in bicycle range. He wanted 10 dollars for the part and 10 dollars for labor, in 1964. What would that be in today's money, $100 at least.
I was totally sincere and naive when I asked if I could buy the part from him and install it myself (since I could solder). He got angry, I think he complained about college boys, I think he slammed his hand on the counter, and I scurried out of there. Home a while later, I had a car and found a store that actually had self-service capacitors, two stage, for about a dollar. I didn't know it was the capacitor until he used the word. So I did better than you but only because I really didn't have $20 AND he got angry. Maybe if he'd just calmly said No, I won't sell you the part, I would have found the money to pay him.

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On Saturday, December 19, 2015 at 9:55:25 AM UTC-5, Micky wrote:

The big mistake was not getting an agreed to price for the conversion upfront. It's not like it's an unknown problem where the service person doesn't know what's required. The bill was $800 with $320 of it for travel time. That leaves $480 for the propane conversion. Unless something unusual was required, that sounds like a lot of money to me. The kit he was referring to would likely be from the manufacturer and might include new orifices, knobs, pressure regulator, hose, etc. Without knowing what was actually done, what parts were supplied, no way to know what a fair charge would be. But if you're dumb enough not to figure it out before, it's easy to get hosed.
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On Saturday, December 19, 2015 at 10:38:23 AM UTC-5, trader_4 wrote:

Another way of looking at it would be that a big factor was the 4 hours of travel time. If you had some local guy come over and it's just a $100 min charge, you could take the risk that after he shows up, if you can't agree to a price, you're only out $100. But in this case the min charge was $410. To agree to that, with no way to control the final price, was just nuts. At that point, the service guy has you at a serious disadvantage, can jack up the remaining price and you're damned if you do and damned if you don't. Hard to imagine that he couldn't have found a local service guy. Gas stoves aren't that special.
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On 12/19/2015 11:57 AM, trader_4 wrote:

We're not fully apprised of what actually went on here. What Micky saw, what Micky remembers, only provide a partial set of facts. I'm sure that Micky would agree.
However, based upon what we HAVE heard, I agree that there could be some questions about the mental competency or integrity of the customer. It matters not if there are fifteen qualified tradesman locally who could do the job for $100. The customer hired the gal from over the hill and far away for whatever reason. Is that her fault? He knew the expense going in for travel and, I suspect he knew more than there would be a $90 minimum charge once on site. There must have been some sort of estimate provided based upon what he told her he had. He should never have agreed to bring her out knowing he's have to cough up the travel money and $90 without knowing more (again, I suspect that he did but we haven't heard about it), but again, he did. It's all on him.
If she has a good reputation and following, that may be the sole reason he hired her. From what we've seen she did what she was hired to do and did it to his satisfaction. If SWMBO is upset, that's HIS problem, not the tradesman's.
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"Micky" wrote in message
A case on the people's court TV show was interesting.
It was about repairs to an "antique stove". A nuddke-aged couple bought a house and the stove came with it. He was wearing a tie and I think she had on a dress. . I like antique machinery so I was esp. interested. It turned out the so-called antique was from 1965. For me that's just a stove, and a pretty modern one, since our firrst gas stove was from 1945, and other than a timer, I don't see much difference, between 1945 and now.
But he wanted it changed from natural gas to propane, and apparently there is only one company in 5 states that concentrated on stuff like this. (I thought she said 5 states but her webpage only says she does business in 3 states. I guess both could be true, if there's no one to do this in the other two states!)
He lives two hours from her shop. She tells him on the phone that it's $80 / hour travel time (for two people) x 4 hours = 320 dollars right off the bat, and $90 minimum when she's there, but for some reason he has doubts AFTER she gets there. Then he keeps saying that he thought she woudl use a kit, but she didn't. He calls his wife and she says not to go through with it (though she may not know about the 410 he already owes). The stove lady tells him, in his words, that she can't take responsibility for the repair unless she does the whole thing***, and he says that meant he was scared and forced into having her do it. ***Well, duh.
I"m not sure what all she did, probably cleaned it, and surely replaced 3? 5 jets for a 4 burner/1 oven stove. What kit did the guy want her to use? Something they sell online I think, with jets and a brush?? And other things she already owns?
She writes up an invoice that totals 800, he signs it and gives her a check, she uses her phone to take video of the invoice and his check and of his saying "good job", then she goes back home and straight to the bank, since they have the same bank, and checks if payment is good, and by then, 2 hours later, it's already been stopped.
Westchester County has some lower middle-income and middle middle-income areas, but all in all it's one of the richest counties in the country. No wonder she's expensive. Get a price before you let someone come out.
If I was judge I would have add couple hours to original bill, that was totally ridicules' you sign contract work is done people like that deserve fine not just paying bill, I know that first handed, some people are total "MORONS"
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They never do this. Apparently the law doesn't cover it. I got the feeling she was making a day of it, bringing all 3 employees, instead of just the one who was there. Probably going to take them out for lunch in Times Square (Sardi's or more likely Nathan's or the Stage Deli.) and then do something in the afternoon. She probably spent 100's on the train and lunch and whatever they did next.
You can possbily get punitive damages in cases of fraud, oppression, or malice. But being a cheapskate is not malice.

True.
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On Saturday, December 19, 2015 at 7:00:18 PM UTC-5, Micky wrote:

It wouldn't be Stage Deli, they closed a couple years ago. I guess even at $25 for a sandwich it's tough to make a buck in NYC.
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On 12/19/2015 07:55 AM, Micky wrote:

Amazingly, Google translated that without even blinking. They must have an algorithm based on adjacent keys to construct a match.
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rbowman wrote: "On 12/19/2015 07:55 AM, Micky wrote:

Amazingly, Google translated that without even blinking. They must have an algorithm based on adjacent keys to construct a match. "
Hard for some to find the home keys - especially on these newfangled tablets and phewns(!)
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On Sat, 19 Dec 2015 15:41:55 -0800 (PST), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

What do you mean translated? It still says nuddke.
Did you read it in Google separately?

OGEWB> {JEWM Phewns? Actually, I have a regular desktop keyboard, but I added that word later, in the middle of the sentence, that is, the nuddke of the sentence.
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On 12/19/2015 05:36 PM, Micky wrote:

What threw me momentarily was thinking it was a Yiddishism like nudnik.
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On 12/19/2015 04:41 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

When it comes to tablets, I'm all thumbs and not in a good way. They're read only devices as far as I'm concerned.
I'm not a touch typist and I've done the same thing as Micky -- happily typed away in my five or six finger style and be offset one key to the left or right.
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wrote:

keyboard doesn't have the inverted dimples on keys G and H, likek it's supposed to.
**6 errors per minute.
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