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What were the best and worst consumer experiences you had this week?

Recently, I launched a best and worst consumer experience feature on The Survive and Thrive Boomer Guide.

I think looking weekly at our best and worse experiences as consumers will help us learn from our successes and mistakes.

Each week, we have dozens of consumer happenings, some good and some bad.
Here’s one each of mine for this week:

My best consumer experience: Winning a gift certificate at a picnic

TCTV Bingo IMG_1714

Wednesday, I went to the annual picnic for our community access television, TCTV. I’ve taken classes at TCTV, but haven’t had the time to do any production work or develop my own show.

After a potluck dinner, the bingo games began. I thought about going home because the games were taking longer than I thought. But, I stuck it out.

I won one game. I received a $10 gift certificate from Southbay Dickerson’s Slow & Low BBQ.

What a good opportunity to invite friends to dinner.

My worst consumer experience: The trials and tribulations of a defective metal roof

Roof Blue Custom Bilt V0000083

In September 2007, a Custom-Bilt Metals vail shingle roof was installed on my home.

It leaked on the inside of the fascia boards all around the house. Fascia boards are 2 by 4s attached to house at the edge of the eves to hang the gutters on.

Custom-Bilt Metals examined the roof and decided the roof was defective, and it would be replaced.

In January 2008, Custom-Bilt Metals had a second vail shingle roof installed. Unfortunately, the same leaking the inside of the fascia boards occurred again.

Custom-Bilt arranged for a repair, but it didn’t work.

I filed complaints with the state Attorney General’s Office, the Better Business Bureau,, the Troubleshooter, and Seattle television stations.

Custom Bilt wouldn’t resolve the complaint. I’ve had to hire an attorney. It’s so frustrating to have a leaky roof in the rainy Pacific Northwest.

Being a careful consumer, I asked for estimates from seven roofers. I checked out the roofer and Custom Bilt.

The step I didn’t do was to find out more about the vail shingle metal roof that Custom Bilt makes. Apparently its design had been changed, and they didn’t have it right when my roofs were installed.

Wish me luck. Hopefully I’ll have a new roof before the rains get heavy.

Copyright 2009, Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist


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Galliena Gornet

A little research before making the final decision is going to make it a little more safe. At least you'll know more about their quality of service before you can have the actual items installed.


I did a lot of research on the roofing company, including talking to three former customers. Although the company was a member of the Better Business Bureau, it did low quality work.


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