5 On Your Side

Lack of Action Riles Man Trying to Have Building Built

Posted September 25, 2007 4:47 p.m. EDT
Updated September 25, 2007 6:48 p.m. EDT

— Nobody wants to pay for something they don't get, especially when the price tag is thousands of dollars. That's what happened to a Chatham County man, however.

The story involves two businesses − Premier Metal Structures and Superior Barns and Buildings − owned by the same person. Together, the firms are the subject of 14 complaints to the Better Business Bureau and six to the state attorney general.

In addition, 5 on Your Side has two complaints. One is from Eddie Roberson.

Eddie Roberson has a boat, a motor home and lots of lawn mowers. He says they are all supposed to be under cover.

Last April, Roberson said, he hired Martin Peele, owner of Premier Metal Structures in Asheboro and made a down payment of about $6,700 for a workshop for a mower-repair business, as well as three car ports to cover all of his vehicles.

Peele promised to start the job in May, Roberson said, but never did.

“They just kept putting me off for all reasons. He had a personal accident. He had two crews to quit on him,” Roberson said he was told. Then, he was told it was too hot for crews to work.

“It rained three days in a row,” was another excuse he said he was given.

Now, Peele says Premier Metal Structures is bankrupt. He has since opened a similar business under a new name, Superior Barns and Buildings, however. Roberson tracked down Peele to talk with him in person, he said.

“He promised me he was gonna honor my contract with Premier. He had all intentions of trying to get it built and everything,” Roberson said, “but still has not, and this was like the last of June.”

Peele directed us to his attorney, who would only say Peele's two companies are "totally separate" and that Peele doesn't owe Roberson anything because Premier is in bankruptcy.

Roberson doesn't think it's fair that Peele can legally just start over after taking his money and not providing the service he promised.

“What have you gotten for $6,755? Nothin’! Absolutely nothing but a big headache. I mean a big headache,” Roberson said.

Before Premier Barns, Peele had a third company name − Diamond Builders.

In most cases, it is legal for companies to go bankrupt and reopen under a new name.

Peele told 5 on Your Side on Tuesday that we should feel sorry for him because "it happens all the time" that he does work, but customers don't pay him – and that is why the company went bankrupt.