Troubleshooters: Port A House

Posted at 9:05 PM, Jan 08, 2018
and last updated 2019-06-24 16:14:39-04

"It’s a shark tank.  It’s like a feeding frenzy.  They know you have money.  Some money from insurance, so they’re all at you."
Lori Benning is crying out for somebody to help her get her house repaired.
"This was your vacation getaway for how many years ?  20 years.  20 years.  And now you can’t wait to get away from this place.  Correct," she told the Troubleshooters.

She says Hurricane Harvey left 3 feet of water inside, but she admits she had no idea how to go about getting it fixed.
The Troubleshooters have been to the house twice.  Still a lot of work to be done.
So just days after Harvey, Benning says she began paying out approximately $65,000.00 in insurance money to 4 different contractors to fix it.

Now she’s frustrated and angry and feels each of them should reimburse her since they didn’t do what she’s already paid them to do. 
"Why should they have to refund you any money ?  You fired them.  Well how would you feel if you showed up and people were living in your house.  The gas grills were going.  The power was on.  The refrigerator was full."

An attorney representing one of the 4 contractors told the Troubleshooters they’ve offered Benning a settlement.
"He told me that if you don’t accept the offer, then they would turn around and sue you for breath of contract.  Always threatening me," Benning replied.
She hasn’t accepted it.

Another of the 4 contractors told us he’s ready to file liens against Benning’s property. 
"Every morning.  Every day these people are coming at you," said an emotional Benning, "wanting more and more and more and there’s no income here.  it’s my livelihood."  

Benning adds that because her insurance money’s running out, and she no longer has rental income from the house, so she’s having to pay this crew putting up drywall out of her own pocket. 
Benning says she’s been living in a hotel that’s being paid for by FEMA, but that runs out January 14th.
The house used to be a vacation rental property for her, now once it’s ready, she says she has to sell it.

We’ll keep following this and let you know what happens next.

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