Mercedes woman seeks help after company leaves pool unfinished
UPDATE: After this story aired, the community offered to help finish the pool for Joline Spann. Click here for the story.
Original story: A Mercedes woman is looking for help after she says a pool company left her high and dry over construction on an unfinished pool that started nearly a year ago.
"They promised us it would be done in four months,” Joline Spann said. “We did give a down payment of $30,000 expecting…It's a good business, it's going to get done."
As the mother of four children with disabilities, Spann hired the company All Valley Pools to create and design a special therapy pool for her kids. She signed a contract and work started in July 2020, she said.
"In November I believe, I asked them if we can be released from our contract with a refund of whatever monies have not been spent on materials and cost,” Spann said. “He told me he would not let anybody touch the pool or the contract, denied me any release from the contract and told me they have every intention on finishing the pool."
This isn't the first time Channel 5 news reported on All Valley Pools. In 2019, a Weslaco man made the same claim about the company after paying them $21,000. His pool remains unfinished.
At the time, the owner of All Valley Pools said the delay was due to June floods - even though the contract had been signed the previous September.
That same owner declined to comment for this story – but an employee of the company said they've been unable to finish Spann’s pool due to rainy weather - and that the owner has cancer.
That same employee also had some distressing news for Spann when she reached out.
"He notified me that they plan to file bankruptcy and there was nothing I could do about it,” Spann said. “He would try to get the pool finished, but good luck basically."
Hilda Martinez -president of the Better Business Bureau of South Texas says one absolute red flag is if a contractor expects the money in full up-front.
"Never give out the full amount of the contract, never give it in full,” Martinez said. “There's no guarantee once he gets your money he's not going to come back."
Spann has tried to convince the company to at least give her the equipment and materials she paid for - and has considered hiring another company to finish the pool. She also filed a report with the Mercedes Police Department.