Thursday, August 7, 2014

A Hole Lotta Work...

The Facts

Our neighbors had to get some work done. Our driveway got cut into.

His Side

Most of the time, when you see something hanging on your front door, it’s some advertisement from a local painting service or lawn service. Sometimes, though, it’s much more annoying than that. Before we went on our trip to Idaho, we got a door hanger from SCE&G telling us of an upcoming event:  them cutting into our yard or driveway. Our neighbors across the street were having some service done and, lucky for us, the access point is within our property line. They weren’t exactly sure where it was, but they knew they were either going to have to cut into our yard or driveway to reach the access point. But, they would fix whatever damage they did within two weeks… we’d see if that was true.

When we were on vacation, we got the call that they were going to be doing the work and have to cut into our driveway. We were thrilled… not. My parents were staying at the house to watch Fletcher and house-sit for us, so we made sure to inform them of what was going on and we went on relaxing during our vacation. When they were done with the work and patched the driveway where they cut, we got my parents to send us a picture. It looked awful. I’m not sure how they thought the job they did was acceptable, but we were not happy with it at all. It was sunken in compared to the rest of the driveway, it had cracks all around it, and they didn’t even fill in all of the cuts they made in the driveway. 

I called our contact with SCE&G and expressed my displeasure with the job as it was performed and he, of course, told me there was nothing he could do about it. I was mad until he told me that he would refer me to the claims department. When I finally got the call from them, they sent a guy out to look at it. I didn’t expect much out of this visit, to be honest. He looked at it and told me that he’s seen worse. The means literally nothing to me, though, because I don’t care what other people’s driveways look like. I care what mine looks like and it didn’t look good. Surprisingly, though, he told me they would cut it all the way across the driveway and fill it in. Wow. That’s actually what we wanted so I was shocked. He told me I’d get a call from the people that were going to do it and they’d set up a time with me.

We waited over a week and hadn’t heard from anyone about our driveway. So I called the guy who told me I’d get a call. He got an attitude with me when I was simply calling to check in and make sure that everything was still in place to get our driveway fixed. There’s no need for an attitude. I wasn’t being mean, I was just following up. The very next day we got a call at 7:30am saying that they are on their way to fix our driveway. There was no planning or anything. Just a call saying they’re on their way. What if we had been busy? Or that day wasn’t good? They didn’t seem to care. Luckily, the guys that came to fix the garage door had come the day before. If not, they wouldn’t have been able to get on the driveway to fix our garage door. 

So yea, it was a long road to get our driveway looking decent again (even though it still doesn’t look very good). At least we can drive on it and it isn’t as much of an eye-sore as it was before. It’s good to look on the bright side even though, sometimes, no side looks very bright. 

Her Side

As you know (if you’ve been reading more than just this post), we’ve done some work in our yard to spruce it up a bit. Our side yard looks great and our front yard is a shade of brilliant green it has never been before… never mind the green might be credited to the superfluous amount of weeds present. Even so, we are quite pleased with the curb appeal of our home. So, it is just up to us to maintain it… easy enough! Well, when we were informed that a four foot by four foot hole would be dug up in our yard or driveway for gas line purposes for our neighbor, I was greatly disappointed (especially in light of our recent accomplishments on our yard). The gentleman at SCE&G who had the pleasure of informing us of this work assured us that, whether in the yard or driveway, they would fill the hole in and it would be as good as new.

I’m a pretty skeptical person by nature and I immediately knew that their “patch job” wouldn’t be up to our standards. It’s not that our standards are very high, because they aren’t. They fall under the “attainable” category. So, when we were informed that the work would start while we were on vacation, I knew we would be coming back to something we wouldn’t be pleased with.

Since we are so very lucky (note the sarcasm), we got to have a hole dug up and patched in the worst place possible:  the driveway! Since we were on vacation when all of this went down, Nolan’s parents sent us a picture and we were immediately unhappy with the results. But we waited until we arrived home from vacation to fully pass judgment on their “repair” perhaps in the hopes that the picture just didn’t do it justice.

Well, the picture did do it justice and it wasn’t good. Nolan had the lovely task of expressing our displeasure and getting them to fix it. His task was much easier and went way better than I ever thought it would. So, we went from an awful four foot by four foot patch in the middle of the end of our driveway to a patch that extends the width of the driveway. While it still isn’t ideal, I’m very thankful that the nice folks at the SCE&G claims department dealt with our unhappiness in the way they did.

The take-away from this is that you should never be afraid to inform a company of your unhappiness or issue with something they have done. As long as you do it in a respectful manner, you’d be surprised at what they are willing to do.

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