IN YOUR CORNER: Customers fight for funds after woodworking company folds

In Your Corner

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Customers had hoped for beautifully crafted furniture made right here in Oklahoma. But they tell In Your Corner they received a headache and are out hundreds of dollars instead.

Farmhouse tables are all the rage in the Sooner State

Denisse Diaz, Ashley Padgett and Christine Entwistle were hoping for tables and more, going the local route, finding AKR Builds on Facebook.

They paid hundreds down for materials. Christine was the first to pay in January, hoping to receive her items in April.

“Messaged [AKR Builds] on April 6th, said, ‘Do we have a timeframe on the table?’ He said, Well, I’m so sorry, having trouble back from the ice storm in February,'” she said. “I message on the 25th, said, ‘Do we have any update?’ He said, ‘Well, I’m still struggling, starting a new business, pushed us out two more weeks.'”

Denisse and Ashley expected a fall delivery. But they say the same delays came from the business owner Thomas Hill.

“He’s like, ‘Well, I had some personal things come up, I won’t be able to deliver it,'” said Denisse.

“He said he was having hardship with sickness in his family, someone had fallen ill, couldn’t work as hard,” added Ashley. “The weather had become sketchy and rainy.”

Photo goes with story
A farmhouse table.

What’s odd though is Ashley also purchased a handful of chairs for hundreds of dollars more through Amazon.

She was instructed to have the chairs delivered directly to Hill’s home to be fixed up and stained to match her table.

Thomas, though, canceled all three families’ orders, and those chairs are now apparently gone as well.

“He said just add the cost of the chairs to the amount I owe you,” said Ashley.

Online reviews have stacked up of late, with a one-star rating on Yelp.

The business’ Facebook page has been deleted as well.

Christine and Denisse’s temporary plastic tables have become permanent dining fixtures.

“I’ve been sitting here waiting for you,” said Denisse. “We’ve been eating on a plastic party table since we moved in, and you know this.”

Ashley paid for specialized benches, hoping her wheelchair-reliant father could enjoy.

She tells our team he didn’t get the chance.

“This whole table is emotional,” Ashley explained. “Because it was originally for my dad.”

We stopped by Hill’s home multiple times, but nobody answered.

Phone calls went unreturned. But they would respond through Facebook messenger.

Travis’ wife Kaylee replied saying customers would be paid back whenever Thomas is able.

She told our team both she and Thomas have new jobs, and that some patrons weren’t being patient enough in waiting for their refunds.

Thomas Hill did not respond, outside of sending “thank you.”

Christine ultimately did receive a refund. Ashley and Denisse must now wait, and hope the Hills come through.

In Your Corner bottom line, buyer beware when giving money up front for materials.

Do everything you can to have a hard project deadline in place.

Shopping local is a fantastic option, but thoroughly check reviews to know who you’re in business with.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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