Idaho AG settles with Boise window cleaning service after dozens of complaints

Frustrations over window cleaning company.

BOISE -- A Boise window and blind cleaning company is being accused of shady business practices.

Customers are complaining that Four Seasons Window and Blind Cleaning Service is accepting money upfront, but not following through on their promises.

KTVB learned the Idaho Attorney General filed a suit against the business owner in September and they reached a settlement. But as 7 Investigate's Morgan Boydston found out, that doesn't mean closure for many.

We are told 21 customers are getting their money back because of that settlement with the Idaho Attorney General, while many others who didn't file with the AG say they are still counting their losses.

7 Investigates reached out to the owner, Eric Biebuyck, and on Friday morning he agreed to meet with us later in the afternoon. But when we called to follow up and secure a time, Biebuyck never picked up or returned our calls.

"He did do a good job when he did them it's just that he wouldn't show up," Four Seasons customer Cindy McLean said.

The complaints are similar: something along the lines of Biebuyck not showing up or answering his phone. The alleged deals are similar in nature, as well.

"He and his partner showed up, cleaned the windows and then offered us a special deal: four window cleanings for $270," McLean's husband, Si Gilbert, said. "We signed a contract for him to do it four more times."

That was in 2015.

"Since then we've gotten him to clean windows twice this past summer. All last year he just kept making excuses and never showing up," Gilbert said.

And those issues are still happening, Cindy and Si say, even after they asked for their money back.

"I'd rather have the refund," Gilbert said.

"At that point, too many no shows," McLean said.

"We don't want anything to do with him," Gilbert added.

KTVB found out Cindy and Si are in the same boat as a number of other homeowners who bought window cleaning services from Biebuyck.

"One woman said she made nine appointments and he stood her up every time," Better Business Bureau Chief Innovation Officer, Dale Dixon, said as he read complaints from consumers on BBB.org.

The Better Business Bureau says they're seeing a consistent pattern on their website:

"We have a person who wrote a complaint and said they signed receipt, bought the deal, he was paid. They've made multiple calls, left messages which are not returned," Dixon read.

"Purchased a package, got one free for a total of four window cleanings. Took me three months of calling finally asking for my money back to get the company to reply," Dixon said as he read another complaint.

Four Seasons Window and Blind Cleaning has an 'F' rating on BBB. Fourty-two customer complaints have been filed on the BBB site and Four Seasons did not respond to 39 of those, Dixon said.

Dixon says BBB investigators reached out to the company to help them try to fix the service, delivery, contract and refund issues.

"We see the business has failed to resolve an underlying pattern of complaints. Meaning we have investigators within the BBB, those investigators are looking into those complaints and when they see a consistent pattern that customers are saying and complaining about the same thing about a business over and over again, we bring that to the business's attention and say, 'listen your customers keep telling us this about their interaction with you, we recommend that you work to remedy that situation'. And when we had that conversation with the business, we show that the business did not resolve that underlying pattern of complaints."

The Attorney General's Office says they dealt with a similar situation. Multiple people filed complaints to their consumer protection department.

"There's not an excuse for not complying with what you've promised to do," Deputy Attorney General for Idaho, Brett DeLange, said. "If you're a business and you're representing that you have certain qualifications or engage in certain services and you repeatedly don't do it, that's a cause of concern."

The AG's Office says they, too, contacted Biebuyck to work something out, but the AG's Office ended up having to file a lawsuit because the business was not making it right by customers.

"After we filed suit we negotiated a consent judgment with the business owner," DeLange added. "It's a way of resolving our lawsuit; it's a judgment but it it he's agreed to a number of terms and conditions."

Among other terms, Biebuyck was ordered in September to refund the customers who pre-paid and filed complaints with the Attorney General. The reported consumer losses totaled about $6,400 and Biebuyck is set up on a payment plan to pay his restitution to the AG's office.

"We're going to administer it," DeLange said.

But many customer reports and complaints we found allege he's still not following through, and many are still without answers or justice.

"He better not be doing what he was doing. Because that could potentially be - I mean it depends on the facts - but that could potentially be a violation of the consent judgment. And then you go back to court for contempt," DeLange said.

DeLange wants people to let their office know if this is still happening to anyone. However, unfortunately the deadline for refunds from Four Seasons through the settlement already passed.

A take-home message from experts KTVB spoke with: Be careful with pre-paid services because you are taking a risk. And while we all want a great deal, we must make sure to do our research on a business before buying anything.
 

© 2017 KTVB-TV


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment