SARASOTA COUNTY (WFLA) – Jeff O’Berry and Tom DeVol turned to the Home Depot on University Parkway for what was supposed to be a simple home improvement project. Months later, they’re calling the entire experience a nightmare with ‘no end in sight’.
The couple wanted to have new tile placed in their entry hall, hallways, kitchen, dining room, utility room, and office. It was supposed to be a quick a easy project.
“We were told originally that it would be done with a dustless system, but there was no dust catcher or vacuum or anything done so it ended up looking like a cloud of dust in here,” said Tom DeVol. The debris was everywhere. It permeated the whole house, the air conditioning system and everything. Things were covered and sealed with Visqueen between rooms and the doors were closed, but it still permeated everything,” he continued.
The couple was told a professional cleaning company would come in the day after the project was complete on Aug. 28. More than two months later, nothing has changed.
“If I had known that this would have been this destructive, I would’ve had all of our belongings in storage and removed from the premises until this was finished. We were not led to believe this would be this damaging. We were told it would be a dust-free or dustless system that did all of the grinding and tile removal and it wasn’t as we were told and this is the result,” said DeVol. “This has been a very damaging process physically and mentally for us,” he explained.
Every nook and cranny in the couple’s home is covered in dust. This isn’t ordinary dust, it is thick, gritty mortar dust. It has clogged their bathroom sink, tainted brand new kitchen appliances, and even made its way into the home’s air ducts.
“It has affected every aspect of our lives for these past two months,” said Jeff O’Berry.
The couple has spent the past two months living in the dust-filled home with no kitchen. They’ve spent hundreds on take-out and there is still no end in sight. O’Berry says his nose is constantly running, and DeVol says he eyes water non-stop. Even one of their two dogs has been impacted by the dust and sent to the vet with irritation.
They’re both concerned about future health impacts.
“Every time I see a commercial on TV about the mesothelioma, I think oh my goodness, is what I am breathing and going to affect me that way or are there going to be long term affects I have definitely had concerns about our long-term health from this,” said O’Berry.
For weeks and weeks, the couple has tried to get the issue resolved with no luck. So, they called 8 On Your Side for help.
“We reached out to you because we couldn’t think of any other way to get a final resolution and to get some quick resolution. This can’t go on indefinitely which is what it seems like and we thought this was the only way we can get someone to take accountability and the company that should take accountability,” said O’Berry. “No more finger-pointing, no more passing the buck, someone is responsible for this and it is not us,” he continued.
8 On Your Side contacted Home Depot’s corporate office Friday afternoon detailing what happened and expressing the couple’s frustrations in getting results in a timely manner.
“This work doesn’t meet our quality standards and expectations. We’re terribly sorry that Mr. O’Berry and Mr. DeVol had this experience and we’re working to make this right as quickly as possible,” said a Home Depot representative.
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