5 On Your Side

Aggravated Customer Turns to 5 on Your Side for Help

Posted October 11, 2007

— Lots of windows make a home seem open, but Rich Ardito said his windows were too open. That’s because they didn't have blinds.

He ordered blinds and shutters from Louver Designs in Wendell. In May, he paid owner Steve Apple about $1,400 – half of the total – up front.

Apple estimated delivery time at three to four weeks. When that didn't happen, Ardito called Apple, repeatedly.

“It's just excuse after excuse after excuse,” Ardito said.

Ardito said Apple then stopped returning his calls, so he called the Better Business Bureau. Apple then called, questioning that.

“I said, 'What else you want me to do?' So that's when he guaranteed me for two more weeks. ‘I'll have it guaranteed in two weeks’ “ Ardito said.

Two more weeks went by and still no blinds.

“This is pure aggravation," Ardito said. "I just get mad."

He lived with "temporary" paper blinds. Some didn't even fit the windows.

“Doesn't exactly look good, does it?" Ardito laughed. "But it served the purpose, but I didn't think I'd have them this long.”

After waiting for four months, Ardito called 5 on Your Side.

“I hate to come down to this, but what else are you going to do? I'll go down kicking and screaming before I lose $1,400," he said.

Apple had five complaints with the BBB over the last three years. When 5 on Your Side called him, he blamed his problems on suppliers and personal health issues.

He immediately called Ardito. What he wasn't able to do in four months, did just nine days later. He delivered and installed the blinds. Apple took care of shutters a week and a half later.

Ardito said he is thrilled his windows now have blinds.

“It's a welcome sight. I'm relieved. At least I have the blinds up now rather than those paper shades," he said.


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  • katgoesloco Oct 13, 2007

    He waited four months! I'd say that Louver Designs had no intention of installing those blinds until the TV station publicized his bad business dealings.

  • taintguy Oct 12, 2007

    He was obviously going to do the work before 5 on your side called. It takes a couple of weeks for suppliers to turn out those orders. Suppliers do not turn around custom blinds and shutters in 9 days.

  • lynddsy Oct 12, 2007

    amazing he could finally call and do the work!

  • GWALLY Oct 12, 2007

    I beg to differ.....25% up front, 25% upon starting the job, 25% when job is 90% complete.....25% when complete.

  • unc4ever Oct 12, 2007


  • Here kitty kitty Oct 12, 2007

    If these companies would just be honest and up-front with customers it would be so much better for all involved. They probably just lost business because of this.

  • ms b Oct 12, 2007

    50% up front is standard in the business since it is all custom work. Other 50% on completion.

  • no.ral.old guy Oct 12, 2007

    Bad case of " blind Faith"

  • CestLaVie Oct 12, 2007

    Tax Man: Because money talks to most people. But then sometimes, it walks!!!!!

  • Tax Man Oct 11, 2007

    Why do people pay so much up front - give them no more than 10 per cent - balance due on completion. Maybe put in a penalty clause, if not done when promised then there is a 10 per cent penalty for each day delayed.