But he keeps hiring guys who do second-hand work.
The fence: Put in a stockade fence and in a couple years the pickets shrank so one can look into his yard between every two pickets. Should that have happened? Do good fence companies age their pickets? Also, a couple big pieces of picket fell off, so even better views through those holes. I don't see that as the fence company's fault but anyone putting in a fence should be sure to get a few spare pickets. His company's out of business now. (and some spare shingles, spare tiles, all the scraps of the carpeting, a little spare everything, and the exact brand and formula for special-mix paint.)
Then he put in a light. I would have run the power from the receptacle in the upstairs bedroom, drilled a hole through the overhang, and powered it that way, but the guy he hired removed his front porch light, ran flat surface channel up the wall to the overhang and over to the light. So no porchlight and that ugly channel.
Then the HOA wanted a floodlight on the end of his building, so he's got silver conduit running from the previous light half-way back, to the middle of the side, and up to the attic level. The conduit is noticeable everywhere. I had already run power to my attic, for a light and fan (and radio and tv) so when the HOA had wanted a flood the on the side, I had him go straight through the wall and connecd to my power. No conduit. If I hadn't already run power to the attic, I would have done so before allowing the flood on the side.
Then he put on aluminum siding on the second floor (first floor is brick). The houses are not clapboard, so he used vertically oriented siding. A couple years later in a windstorm, one piece came off at one end and flapped around. Should I blame the siding company for that? What I do blame them for is the screws they used to screw it back, with big silver heads iirc. And I'd already noticed how they had reattached the downspout they had removed to install the siding. Don't most downspout brackets have a sort of fleur-de-lis at each end. Mine do and the ones on his first floor do but the ones on the second floor are just rectangular and look like scraps rolled up and squeezed flat. They look terrible. I can't post a picture, because I can't let him catch me taking one.
Finally, he replaced the steps going up almost a flight to his front door. Looked nice 6 months ago, but grey instead of tan. Now I see they're spalling already. Do you know what the contractor did wrong? He did, before the fence went up, with his friends, probably all firemen, put in a cement pad and a pre-fab, home-depot style shed, and afaik that's still in good shape.
And another neighbor a couple doors away replaced the deck years ago. I was going to need a new deck so I went over to talk to them. They used those metal hangers for every joist (when aiui, they shouldnt' be needed at all), they used right angle brackets for the railing uprights, because they didnt' know how to do toe-nails, and they never took the "treated wood" labels off of any of the treated wood.
And oh, yeah, my other next door neighbor, several owners ago, needed to repair the privacy "screen"/fence in front of the front patio. They wear out every 20 years or so. I still had dial-up then and I'm on the computer when the net fails. I go downstairs and they're using a pole or a pick to do something, get the rotten remains of the 4x4 out of the ground maybe. I complain that they cut my phone line and they offer to or start to fix it with a wirenut. (This will be underground when done.) I stop them and get a soldering iron etc. and solder it, then wrap it with the silicon tape. They were sort of laughing at me for doing it the hard way, soldering, and I was laughing inside that they don't know how to do it. On Monday I call the phone company, and she tells me their guys would just use those jelly filled connectors and regular electrical tape. So I think I did a better job than the phone company would have and for sure better than those handymen would have.
I do most of my work myself, but did hire a guy to do the roof. He'd done three of my n'bors with no complaints. 5 years later I have no complaints.
None of the flaws are so noticeable that they will lower the price of my house, plus I plan to be dead then anyhow, but I had the need to vent. PSSSsssss.