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Basement Remodeling Contractors to Avoid


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" and my wife designed the kitchen and bathroom remodels. has a great eye for unconventional solutions and is excellent" from a design standpoint as well. Our tree in the back yard had to be removed and he designed an arbor to replace the shade that we had been accustomed to. His employees are all long termed and have wonderful skills. He generally works around the beach areas and never needs to advertize because of his reputation

-Bob E.

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Angie's Answers

Todd said it best.

An itemized list / cost breakdown, more often than not is used against the contractor when it is shared with other builders who will then beat it.

Good contractors use good people, and good people cost more.  Just the cost of having the appropriate insurance / bond can be the difference between winning a job or losing it ot a 'lower bid'.

It is the rule of three; there is Good, Cheap and Fast.  You can have any two:  Good and Cheap, won't be Fast; Good and Fast, won't be Cheap;  Cheap and Fast, won't be Good!

When comparing bids, it isn't the cheapest or the 'nicest' person you should select.   You should understand why there is a large price difference (it shows there are gaps in your design program or what you have asked for specifically, which means there may be arguments later).  If most of the bids are in line, and one is way high or way low,  you want to know why before dismissing or selecting them.

A price-only decision almost always costs more in the long run. 

Good luck!

No.  Heck no.  Here's a good example.  We very recently needed to find someone to install about 500 square feet of exotic wood flooring (we already have the materials).  We contacted about 12-15 top-rated Angieslist contractors.  Out of the few who did get back to us, we got 5 quotes, 2 of them were literally just over the phone.  They "didn't feel it would be necessary to even see the space". 


Here were the bids: 

$4000 (sight unseen), $2800 (sight unseen), $2500, $1500, $1450


We didn't "share our budget for this".  Why would we?  We asked them to bid the job.  That's it.  All of them should be well-qualified and they are all highly rated.  We were interested in how THEY value their time/resources - for an apples/apples job. 


Do you still think that you should tell them about your budget?  Your choice.  From my standpoint it isn't their business.  I'm asking them to bid on a project.  Invariably I'll get some very high bids, medium bids and a few more reasonable ones - ALL from "highly rated contractors". 

For this type of job, you need plans and specs from an Architectural/Engineering firm before thinking about contractors - and to get a building permit. Ben's method would work and done incrementally could cost well over $100,000 plus as he says, but this not really the most economic way to approach this big a job. A House Mover or Foundation Underpinning specialty company can usually slide your house onto a whole new foundation, or jack it up on steel beams and hold it there while a basement is dug underneath it, without any intermediate piers. The jacking/move cost would probably be on the order of $30-40,000, and a new basement probably about $40-50,000 - rough ballpark, though I have been involved in some 1000-1500SF single story jobs that went for under $70,000 total. I have been involved in a fair number of these type jobs - and the way the numbers come out, if there is room on the property to move the house, it is almost always nearly as cheap or cheaper to build an equivalent square footage (basement plus ground level) addition rather than add a basement under the house, and that way your new footage is half above ground so worth more on resale, plus you do not lose use of the house for a month or two. Second cheapest is usually sliding house to a new foundation, if property is large enough to do this - though house is totally cut off from utilities for a week to three. Most expensive, and usually only done in tight city environments or with full 2 story or higher houses, is adding the foundation in place, though your utility interruptions should be on the order of hours at a time rather than days or weeks. Talk to an architect - I think you will quickly lean towards the addition option rather than adding a basement - it is just too expensive to deepen foundations in most cases, plus you WILL get cracking in the house and possible water and sewer pipe problems in a move/underpinning job, which is not the case with an addition. This become more likely the case since you want to add 8 feet off the back of the home anyway - so why not just enlarge the addition and do it all that way - MUCH simpler, and MUCH less disruption of your life, and you get much higher resale return on your investment.

Herlonginc's answer stated that it is not the contractor's job to pay for materials and labor to do the job. I say baloney - a reputable, established contractor has the funds (or a business operations line of credit) to "carry" the job between interim or partial payments, each of which should be keyed to completion of distinct easily measured mileposts in the job, and for a homeowner I would say should be in not more than 20% increments for jobs exceeding a week or so. For shorter jobs, then an initial payment, 50% completion, and completion would be normal. His cost of carry funds is part of his cost of doing business, and is figured as part of his overhead.Bear in mind when he is buying materials and paying labor, his materials he typically pays for on a 10-30 day invoice, and his labor typically a week or two after they work, so he is not really "fronting" that much money if you are giving him weekly or biweekly interim payments, on a typical residential job.

If he does not have the funds to buy materials (excepting possibly deposit on special-order or luxury items, which still typically are 10-30 day invoiceable to him) and hire personnel then he is a fly-by-night operation, and he should not be bidding that size job. You should never (other than MAYBE an earnest deposit of not more than the LESSER of 10% or $5000) let the payments get ahead of the approved/inspected work progress - typically payment should be 10-20% BEHIND the progress, with at least 10% retained at the effective end of work until final inspections and completion of the final "punchlist".

That promotes rapid continuation of the work, discourages the all-too common nightmare of contractors taking on more work than they can handle so they leave your job for weeks or months to go work on someone else's job (frequently to start that someone else's new job so he can get the job), and does not leave you out a tremendous amount of cash if he does not finish and you have to hire another contractor to finish the job. Remember, if you have to hire a new contractor to finish the job, he will charge you a lot more than the original bid to finish someone else's unfinished mess.

This may seem cynical, but having started in the construction business about 50 years ago and seeing the shenanigans that a lot of contractors pull you cannot be too safe. You have to remember contractors are like any other people - I would say maybe 10% are outright crooks, another 25% or so will pull a fast one or overcharge if the opportunity presents itself, maybe 30% will do the work but not any better than they are forced to, about 25% are good conscientious reputable workmen, and the last 10% or so are really spectacular - conscientious, fair, and efficient craftsmen. This top 35% are the only ones you should have bidding in the first place. Therefore, only get bids from long-term reputable firms (so you shake out the marginal short-timers with less experience and also generally less ability to finish the job on budget and schedule), only those that have good RECENT references, and preferably with excellent word-of-mouth recommendation from people you know and trust. That way, you are starting right off with the cream of the crop, so hopefully whichever one bids low should be a good choice.

NEVER start with bids, then check the references of the low bidder - why even consider a vendor or contractor who you do not have faith in from the start ? Get references and short-list you possibles BEFORE you ask for bids.

Low bids - that is another matter - commonly the low bidder is NOT who you want, especially if he is significantly lower than several others, which might mean he is desperate for work, made a math error, or did not correctly figure the entire scope of work. You want a reasonable bid with someone you connect with and trust - that is worth a lot more in the success of the job than the absolute lowest bid.


Basement Remodeling Contractors in San Diego

Companies below are listed in alphabetical order. To view top rated service providers along with reviews and ratings, Join Angie's List Now!

24/7 Handyman Service

P.O Box 16125
San Diego

A Affordable Handyman and Construction

1027 Leslie Road No. 2
El Cajon


7145 Mohawk St
San Diego


1280 Santa Fe Dr.

Advanced Contracting Services Inc

4705 New Horizon Blvd #3

Advice 2 Build

10481 Del Rio Rd
Spring Valley

Alamir Construction

San Diego

All Phases and Trades Construction Corp

1211 Maryland Pl
San Diego

All Seasons Roofing Inc

7847 Dunbrook Rd
San Diego

Ameribuilt Construction, Inc

10035 Carroll Canyon Rd #E
San Diego

American Eagle Construction

2519 El Cajon Blvd
San Diego

American Eagle Construction

2519 El Cajon Blvd
San Diego

American Eagle Construction

2519 El Cajon Blvd
San Diego

Andy's Carpentry And Remodel

5154 Savannah Street
San Diego


San Diego

Artistic Design and Remodeling

2244 Faraday Avenue

Atlas Custom Construction

601 N. Cedros Ave.
Solana Beach

Authentic Designs & Remodeling Inc

3525 Del Mar Heights Rd.
San Diego

B2 Contracting, Inc.

3121 Geronimo Avenue
San Diego

Ballow Construction

2863 Gate Seven Pl

Beach City Builders Inc

2604 B El Camino Real


270 N El Camino Real, Suite 297

Benzing Construction

3619 cherokee ave

Berg Construction

803 Santa Rosita
Solana Beach

Berkley Construction Inc

1520 Dale St
San Diego

Bernard King Construction

3941 El Canto Dr
Spring Valley

bespoke remodelling

120 N Pacific St #A7
San Marcos

BHI Builders, Inc

810 Los Vallecitos Blvd. Suite D
San Marcos

Boonstra Construction, Inc.

3720 Oceanic Way

Brian Thomas Consulting Inc

396 Eddie Dr.

Bronze Age Builders, Inc

1035 E Vista Way #221

Brown Behr Builders

366 Morgan Place

Brown Dog Renovations

3029 Via De Caballo

BWW and Company

832 Ardmore Cir

Caliber Home Loans

701 Palomar Airport Rd Suite 300

Canyon Crest Construction

17595 Harvard Ave

Carpet and Flooring Depot LLC

7128 Miramar Rd
San Diego

CC&R Building

PO Box 211161

CCM Builders

852 Hunters Ridge Pl
Chula Vista

Chestnut Consultants & Contractors

3483 Arthur Ave.\
San Diego

Choice Construction and Remodeling

4905 Morena Blvd Ste 1306
San Diego

Citizen One Construction

6878 Navajo Road unit 49
San Diego

CMS Construction Services, Inc.

4425 Larchwood Pl


3930 Utah Street
San Diego


2790 Kurtz Street
San Diego

Cook Construction, Inc.

PO Box 300593

Cor Builders Inc.

1810 Hillsdale Rd
El Cajon

Cornerstone Home Improvements

5235 Mt. Blanca Dr.
San Diego

Cota Construction

820 edgerton way
National City

CR Contractors

48865 Lake Canyon Dr

Dakini Engineering General Contracting

1121 Carlsbad St
Spring Valley

Dash Construction

4298 Adames Ave
San Diego

Dave & Company

835 West Empire

David Eder

1861 Dentro De Lomas

David Foti Construction

481 Nothomb St
El Cajon

DBB Services

39440 Chaparral dr.

DC General Contracting

13019 Ashgate Place


1991 Friendship Drive
El Cajon

Derks Construction

P.O. Box 83476
San Diego

DG General, Inc.

3512 Columbia St
San Diego

DR Mason Construction

1802 talmadge dr


National City

Duende Design + Construction

3797 Mt Ainsworth Ave
San Diego

Dynamic Contracting

22811 Sparrowdell Dr


El Cajon

Earthwood Concepts

13414 Sawtooth Road
San Diego

East County Clectric

9313 Christina Lane

ECG Construction Inc

3614 Columbia St
San Diego

Egan Brothers Construction

2674 Hornblend St Apt G
San Diego

EK Home Services

1259 Oak Drive

Envision Design

2645 Financial Court
San Diego

Europe Construction

7938 Miramar Rd
San Diego

Famiglia Construction

5981 Trojan Ave
San Diego

Farella constuction

5350 Toscana way. 213

Finest Home Remodeling

22287 Mulholland

Florentino Topete

641 San Ysidro Blvd
San Ysidro

Ford Construction

9840 Shirley Gardens Dr Unit 2

FuentesOliva.ap Construction

p.o box 11
National City

G L Keiser Contracting Inc

750 B St #2100
San Diego

Gallery Home Design, Inc

17880 Corte Emparrado
San Diego

GAM Construction

16671 Lynn Lane
Huntington Beach

Gary Faith Construction, Inc

PO Box 26642
San Diego


PO Box 711062

Golden State General Contractors

Rancho santa fe rd

Gregory Construction

4924 Coronado Ave
San Diego


San Diego

Handyman Can

San Diego


1150 Hermes Ave

Hawks Construction

16463 Lyons Valley Rd

Hersum Construction

6365 Marinindustry Drive
San Diego

Hi-Tech Builders Inc

5435 Balboa Blvd.

Hollywood Refinishing

14758 Arminta St
Panorama City

Home Experts

PO Box 1930
San Marcos

Home Handyman

PO Box 461888

HoneyDoforYou Handyman Services

9921 Carmel Mountain Rd
San Diego

Ikon Construction Inc.

3310 Via De La Valle

Imperial General Contractors

1211 E. Pennsylvania Ave.

Infinity Construction, Inc.

701 Palomar Airport Rd.

Integrity Restoration, Inc.

4901 Morena Blvd
San Diego

Interior & Exterior Designs

551 S Cypress Avenue
La Habra

Interior Designs San Diego

14412 Rock Rose
San Diego

Ironwood Pacific Construction

271 Roymar Rd

Isaiah's Drywall Company

512 Tanoak Ct
Chula Vista

Iuli Construction

8047 Mission Gorge Rd

J F Lutes Construction

1071 Guizot St
San Diego


2036 Nevada city hiwy
Grass Valley

JJH Construction, Inc.

3930 Oregon Street, Suite 240
San Diego

JMR Concrete

4052 paseo De La Vista

John Elmore Construction

7411 Turnford Dr
San Diego

JP Engineering

160 S. Johnson Ave

Kaminskiy Design and Remodeling

12396 World Trade Dr Ste 108
San Diego

KBB Remodeling

5609 Rancho Mission Road
San Diego

Keblish Construction

2717 Kausman
San Diego

KEVCO Home Services

PO Box #651

Keystone Design Build, Inc.

Ladera Ranch

Kira Construction, Inc.

1248 Via Vista

Klee construction

728 Vanitie ct

KM Construction

1040 Golden Rd.

Kosh Construction & Handyman Services

4551 Mt. La Platta Place
San Diego

Larkin General Contracting

1380 Garnet Ave.
San Diego

Livio Stabile, Design-Build

3163 1/2 Atwater Ave
Los Angeles

Loya's Cleaning Services

P.O. Box 513
Lemon Grove


La Mesa

M W Services

2036 Crenshaw St.
San Diego

Mark Designs

24451 Muela
Mission Viejo

Masing Construction Inc

1790 La Costa Meadows Dr
San Marcos

Masonry Concepts

3450 Hawk Street
San Diego


8600 W. Olympic Blvd.
Los Angeles

MC Construction

1412 Marline Ave
El Cajon

Merit Construction & Remodeling

6814 Wallsey Drive
San Diego

Merman Home Improvements & Construction Inc

2815 Morningside St
San Diego

Miltco Inc.

3511 Camino Del Rio South Ste 210
San Diego

Mr. Construction d.b.a Mr. Stucco & Paint

4941 Cresita Drive
San Diego

Mullen Construction

2890 Pio Pico Drive

MVW General Contractors, Inc.

118 S. Vinewood St.

Need A Hand?

P.O. Box 16111
San Diego



Nick Steele Construction

3612 Harvard Dr

Novo Redo Inc

2324 Vancouver Ave
San Diego

Novo Redo Inc.

San Diego

Oh'Neil Construction

29583 Waynewood Dr

Olivari Construction & Painting

7145 Mohawk St
San Diego

Owen Builders

336 Parkway
Chula Vista

Oz Electric Inc

PO Box 5686
San Diego

Pacific West Construction Group

7703 Convoy Court
San Diego


San Marcos

Papa's Home Improvements LLC

815 Regulo PL
Chula Vista

Parmelee Architecture & Planning

1269 Archer St
San Diego

Pedro J Fraire Construction

3081 Nile Street
San Diego

Perfect Projects Management

8811 Cherry Rd

Phil Milana Construction Co Inc

3525 Fern Canyon Road

Pollard Construction

PO Box 341

PowerHouse Green Construction

5360 Jackson Drive
La Mesa

Precision Construction

4503 Corte Azul

Prentiss Ridges

PO Box 81

Pro Custom General Contractors Inc

3918 Bandini St
San Diego

Pro General Contractors.com

6503 Lochmoor Dr.
San Diego

ProPacific Builders

2261 Cosmos Ct

Quality CP Inc.

Chula Vista

R W S Contracting

2604-B El Camino Real #224

R&R restoration

San diego

Radco Construction

333 Poinsettia Ave

Ralph Valkenhoff General Contractor

7880 Camino Jonata
San Diego

RamFLEX Builders

PO Box 1012

RCVH Home Services Inc

1503 W. Borden Rd
San Marcos

Red Head Rehabs

1541 N Laurel Avenue
Los Angeles

Ree Construction

739 San Juan Place
Chula Vista

reel construction

23598 Wooden Horse Trail

Remodeling Contractor San Diego

501 W. Broadway
San Diego

Responsible Construction

1786 Laurel Rd

Restoration Experts

500 Fesler Street #207

Restoration Professionals

1903 Dehesa road
El Cajon

Rios Handyman Plus

1212 capistrano ave.
Spring Valley

Roper Electric

5135 Baywood Cir.

Rose Maintenance


Rush Plumbing & Rooter/Rush Contractors & Eng.

offices in Anaheim, Menifee, San Jose, San Diego

S and J Painting

2741 Lemon Grove
Lemon Grove


25471 Arctic Ocean Dr
Lake Forest

Saldana's Home Maintenance

1558 Everview Rd
San Diego

Samco Renovations

975 Star Lake Ave
South Lake Tahoe

San diego bathtubs refinishers

467 elm ave
Chula Vista

San Diego General Contracting Inc

2454 Larrabe Place
San Diego

San Diego Handyman Repairs

939 Eastmont Pl

SD - Home Improvement

9054 Gramercy Dr
San Diego

SD Custom Construction

1940 Casa Bonita Way

ServiceMaster All Phase Restoration

1466 Pioneer Way #6
El Cajon

Shane Contractors

10001 Dunbar Lane
El Cajon

Shear Force Construction Services, Inc

3525 Del Mar Heights Road
San Diego

SK Residential Design & Drafting

8400 Miramar Rd.
San Diego


1754 s. mammoth pl

SoCal Construction and Design

3584 Hancock St
San Diego

Socal Home Remodeling Inc

16600 Sherman Way
Van Nuys

SOD Builders Inc

17337 Ventura Blvd

solano's construction

541 Spires St

Soundrite-Acoustics, Inc.

209 S. Stephanie Street

Stanley Construction Inc.

Po box 723

Sterling Design & Remodeling

4311 Mayapan Dr
La Mesa

Steven Worley Construction Inc

1651 E Main St
El Cajon

Surfside Developers, Inc.

4502 Milton street
San Diego

Swenbilt Homes

PO Box 651

T&E Framing

Chula Vista

Taylor's Home Remodeling

5444 San Miguel Rd

TCE Constructors, Inc.

4661 Brighton Avenue
San Diego

The Jeffrey Building Company

182 Vance St
Chula Vista

The Man Handy

22806 Supa Ct

The Tankless Plumber

15721 Bernardo Heights Pkwy
San Diego

TL Premier Construction Inc.

4564 Alvarado Canyon Rd,
San Diego

Top Design Inc

16134 Hart St
Van Nuys

Toro Home Maintenance & Repairs

1270 Phillips Street


4414 Alta Mira Dr
La Mesa

Treeium, Inc

5352 Laurel Canyon Blvd.
Valley Village

Trio Construction Group

399 West Bay Street
Costa Mesa

Under the SON Property Services

3207 Rancho Miguel Rd

VARGAS Handyman Services

160 E Street C104


1551 4th Ave Suite 402
San Diego

VJP Construction Incorporated

4565 Ruffner St.
San Diego

VS Construction Group, Inc.

6755 Mira Mesa Blvd.,
San Diego


12637 S 265 W Suite 100

WCT Contruction

4850 Lake Park Pl

We're Innovative

14230 York Ave

Welby Construction Management

4422 Glacier Ave.
San Diego

Whole Cellar LLC

2244 Main Street
Chula Vista

Wiest Construction

10343 Craftsman Way, #202
San Diego

William Faithluvhope Contracting Inc.

17805 Sintonte Dr
San Diego

Wisteria Lane Flooring

3299 Jefferson Street
San Diego

World Wide Construction, Inc.

415 Laurel St. PMB #126
San Diego

X Squared, Inc.

1320 Grand Ave Ste 9
San Marcos

Zion Builders


Zion Energy

3249 Isla Vista Dr
San Diego

ZNTH, Inc. dba Zenith Construction

5755 Oberlin Drive
San Diego

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