Houston windows company being investigated over customer complaints

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A window business is being investigated by the BBB after more than 20 consumer complaints.

When Danny Bacot decided to sell his house at the beginning of the year, he knew he needed to replace his back windows.

He was impressed by Wonderful Windows' booth at a local home and garden show, and invited the company to give him a quote.

He then put down a $2,600 deposit in February and waited, and waited.

"Well I've called them 8 times," said Bacot, who has not put his house on the market because the windows have not been replaced.

"It's really disheartening, because we're trying to get the house sold. So it's not just that we lost $2,600 but we're being held back from getting our house sold."

Bacot isn't alone. Debbie Coyle-Larner has been trying to get her window fixed for months.

"Nobody answers. Nobody returns a phone call," she said. Coyle-Larner had used Wonderful Windows years ago to install her windows after a hurricane.

She was very satisfied then, but not now. "I've been trying to get a chipped window fixed forever."

Paula and Phillip LaGrappe own the company. Several YouTube videos touting the quality of Wonderful Windows are still on view.

In addition, the company's website is still fully operational, as if nothing was wrong.

However, Wonderful Windows' offices in Memorial and Katy appear to be empty. The Better Business Bureau is investigating.

"Right now we're talking about 22 consumers that haven't had a response that's just filed with us," said Susan Schade, senior director of dispute resolution at the Better Business Bureau.

Schade says the BBB estimates that for every complaint it receives, there are likely around 50 people who have not called.

Doing the math, it's easy to see that hundreds of consumers in the greater Houston area may be affected.

Schade says the BBB first began getting complaints in April. This morning, Paula LaGrappe finally contacted the BBB via email, telling the agency that Wonderful Windows has closed for good.

That means customers must sue if they want a chance to get their deposits back.

"They can file in small claims court, yes," said Schade. "Unfortunately, there's not a lot at this point that can be done."

We tried locating the LaGrappes throughout the day. Our phone calls were not returned. Eyewitness News was able to find Phillip LaGrappe's sister, who works at their father's window company.

The sister stated over the phone that the father's company is not related to Phillip LaGrappe's company, and she could not find him for us.

The Better Business Bureau says if damages go above a certain threshold, it is possible that the owners could be held criminally liable. That investigation, if it comes to that, will be up to the district attorney's office.

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businessbetter business bureaubusinessHouston
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