False Mower County contractor accused of swindling homeowners out of thousands for incomplete renovations

(ABC 6 News) – A Brownsdale man appeared in Mower County Court Thursday, Feb. 2, on two charges each of theft by swindle and residential contractor–violation of commissioner order.

According to court documents, Larry David Alvarez, 42, was ordered by the Minnesota Department of Labor in October of 2020 to stop acting or accepting jobs as a building contractor, remodeler, or roofer in Minnesota until he obtained the proper licensure.

The order also prohibited Alvarez from performing plumbing and electrical work in the state of Minnesota.

The order did not stop Alvarez from accepting contracting jobs in Austin, which he failed to complete, according to court documents.

According to the Mower County Sheriff’s Office’s reports, Alvarez was hired to work on a deck and shower at a Austin home in the summer of 2022, which involved renovation, plumbing, and electrical work.

Alvarez worked under the name “Cutting Edge Home Renovations” with the first alleged victim, according to court documents, and received the job after an Austin insurance agent posted on Facebook about Alvarez’s availability for contract work.

According to court documents, the woman paid Alvarez a total of $15,350 for the projects.

In October, she contacted law enforcement to state that neither project was finished, and Alvarez had stopped responding to her calls.

According to court documents, a second Austin resident hired Alvarez under the name “Craft Masters” to complete $2,600 in home improvements in September of 2022.

According to court documents, Alvarez received half of the money, completed some work, received the rest of the payment, and eventually stopped answering the woman’s calls about completing the job.

According to Minnesota court records, Alvarez was previously convicted on charges of 3rd-degree burglary in Mower County and theft by swindle in Blue Earth County.