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Homeowner spends thousands on hurricane shutters but says she couldn't get them to work

Posted: 4:40 PM, Apr 04, 2019
Updated: 2019-04-04 18:32:59-04
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Donna Fancher boarded up her Lutz home for Hurricane Irma and wanted to avoid a similar situation this hurricane season, so she paid more than $3,000 for canvas shutters.

The biggest selling point was Fancher and her family could put them up and take them down without having to hire someone.

“You can just do it with your fingers,” said the 81-year-old Fancher.

But after workers installed permanent screws to attach those shutters to her home last December, Fancher discovered a problem.

“I would put the screwdriver there and it would not move,” said Fancher.

The installation company tightened more than 20 screws to the point that she could not pull them out and put up her shutters.

There was also the matter of an errant permit. According to her contract, Fancher paid $325 for a permit that she didn’t need – according to county code.

Fancher said the company contacted her about her complaint in January, but no one ever came out to make repairs at that time.’

“I wasn’t getting anywhere,” said Fancher.

After hearing her story, Taking Action Reporter Jackie Callaway emailed the owner of Practical Windows. He quickly responded to Fancher and days later, a technician came out and fixed all of the issues with the screws and delivered a refund check for $325.

The company owner also admitted he made a mistake and only found out a permit was not needed for the job after the installation.

In an email he said, “We are a company that likes to take care of our customers, not only during the sale but also after the sale.”

Consumers who run into an issue with any company can contact Florida’s Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services at www.800helpfla.com