I know you don't want to hear about the Attorney 'thing' but you never know. Soooo, what should you do?
IMO, you should assume the worst. Assume you're having to take your case to court (either to Small Claims or otherwise.) And what will the Judge want to see? He's going to want to see your DOCUMENTATION and your PICTURES.
Whenever there's damage, take pictures video and still ones, and hand-write down what you see and are experiencing with your eyes, ears, nose, and 'touch'. Write down dates and times you call or contacts ANYONE about the problem. Write what YOU say and what was said to you. Get NAMES, write the 'promises' made, write the 'expected completion dates' down. And so on. THere's NEVER too much documentation/video/pictures.
You see, when you meet up with the Judge, he's gonna want to hear 1) what you were INITIALLY going to get or have built. 2) What happened. 3) Did the Builder say he was going to 'fix it', and when. 4) DID he fix it? 5) Why not? 6) What did you have to eventually do to get it fixed? 7) How much did the repair(s) cost you?
If you 'miss' any of these 'points', it's a battle of the he-said, she-said. And from there, you're leaving the 'decision' as to who's gonna 'pay' up to a detached 'third party', i.e., the Judge. Oh, I respect his job BUT I want to make sure I have sooooo much ammunition that my 'advisary' doesn't have a prayer on winning the case. You have to assume the worst. Think about it - If you do all these things AND the Builder takes care of your problem, well, that's good! That IS what you want.
So get to it! Buy yourself a disposable camera, a School Notebook, and anything else you need to 'make a case'. Do realize this - If you have to resort to your memory, you increase your chances of losing. My best to ya and hope this helps.
Jay J -Moderator
PS: This is how you watch out for yourself. YOu can certainly back-track in your book by entering into it with past problems/fixes. You don't have to start with 'today' ...