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Pinellas Park business was paid $25K to build tiny home but never delivered

Oct 08, 2023Oct 08, 2023

PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. — Back surgeries and leg injuries left Kris Bell out of work and on a fixed income. After considering various living arrangements, she decided a tiny home made from shipping containers would be a good fit. Bell liked that the house was inexpensive — less than $40,000 — and all on one level, making it easy for her to get around. The 55-year-old signed an agreement with Container Living Solutions LLC last August.

Bell toured one of the company's container homes before giving Container Living Solutions manager Jose "Mike" Feliciano a $10,000 deposit. The company's website helped finalize her decision, she said.

"His pictures online with his website matched his product," she said.

In October, Bell paid Feliciano another $15,000 after he said the containers had been delivered. She says he stopped responding to her calls and texts a month later. Her container was never delivered. Bell had to move in with a friend and had no idea what would happen next.

Former Pinellas resident Maritza Padgett said she paid Feliciano 34,000 dollars in October 2021 to place a container home with solar panels on her Gainesville property. Padgett says the solar panels never worked, leaving her with no power. She tried calling Feliciano for help.

"He kept on blaming the solar company that he purchased the materials from," she said. Telling her, "It was on them and not on his installation."

A year and a half later, Padgett still has no power and cannot live in her mini-home. "It was just not habitable, and he stopped responding to my calls," she said.

Mike Feliciano did not respond to calls nor to email or voicemail messages. There is an empty building at the address listed on the company's still active website. Likewise, no one answered the door at the St. Petersburg home listed on his voter registration.

Secretary of State records show Container Living Solutions is currently active. But the Department of Business and Professional Regulation doesn't show a license for Feliciano or his company, Container Living Solutions LLC.

State law requires a contractor's license when a business collects money to build a structure that includes plumbing and power. Pinellas County Consumer Protection has investigated the 48-year-old contractor's company.

"I am grateful because I don't want him to do this to anybody else," Padgett said.

Always verify a contractor is properly licensed before doing business with them. You can check state licenses; CLICK HERE.

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