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"We got off to a bad start when the clearing costs were nearly double what was budgeted.
sat on that estimate until after we had closed on" the mortgage, which cost us additional cash out of pocket. Once we signed the contract, communication became extremely poor. We rarely received updates on progress or scheduled work unless we asked, which we had to do at least weekly. He ordered the wrong selections several times costing us additional money and time. When we asked for invoices related to increased costs reflected in the change orders, he refused to provide them. As far as we can tell,
stopped visiting the site in the fall, about 5 months into construction. Sometime in March or April he stopped paying subcontractors despite receiving the funds from a draw to do so. We began receiving
notices in April. Since then, we estimate he failed to pay nearly $80,000 worth of labor and materials on our home despite receiving funds from our construction loan as scheduled. We are now incurring even greater legal expenses to clear the liens on our property and defend ourselves from subcontractors who were not paid. A build that was estimated to take 6-8 months took nearly 12 months and our home is still not complete.
was able to escape responsibility for the debts related to our home through filing bankruptcy, though we are left to clean up the mess. The process has been a nightmare and it still isn't over.

-Heather C.

"Fit me into his schedule immediately understanding I was in a crunch time wise. Communicated all plans, times, days etc. throughout the project, completed the work" on time (sooner than I even hoped). Gave me some great ideas and option design wise and checked with me for all final decisions. Great ideas, but not pushy at all. Walked me through project regularly to show the work that was getting done, to get feedback from me, and keep everything on track and that we were all on the same page. The outcome of the work was all beautiful!! Couldn't have imagined better. And most important... All at a very fair price, even better on some comps that I cross check such as the landscaping.

-Andrea W.

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Local Articles in Brooklyn


Customized homebuilding is a huge market, with companies offering a host of choices to personalize your new home or improve your current living space. Here are the most popular options offered by homebuilders.

While it can seem like an unnecessary expense, an egress window with dimensions that meet local building codes should be added. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Dale R. of Detroit)
Remodeling - General, Builders - Homes, Windows - Egress, Lead Testing & Removal

Before you start your home improvement project, learn common mistakes to avoid a disaster.

contractors, construction, blueprints
Carpentry - Unfinished, Remodeling - General, Builders - Homes

Do you know the importance of a construction lien waiver form?

Millennials are changing how homebuilders design and construct new houses. (Photo by Jason Hargraves)
Builders - Homes, Home Automation

Emphasis is on ease, comfort as formal rooms lose favor

log cabin home
Builders - Homes

Land plays a factor in both cost and construction, especially in the mountains.

Inspiration & Ideas

quartz countertops
granite countertop and backsplash
bathroom remodel with granite countertop and backsplash
kitchen remodel
bathroom mosaic tiles
kitchen remodel

Angie's Answers

Yes, but you won't like what will probably happen (this is a worst case scenario, hopefully you will avoid most):

The purpose for a building permit is to ensure meeting the minimum standards for construction practices and minimum safety standards.  A contractor who works without a permit, does so because they know they are not in compliance (and to save money at your expense).  They knew they should have had inspections and permits for their work.  Who ever built the addition should be reported to both the building official as well as the Better Business Bureau.  It is ultimately the homeowner who is responsible for ensuring the proper permits have been applied for, though.

So when you apply for your permit, you will be pretending as if the work is not completed (you do not hide this fact, you just have to follow the correct process as if it hadn't been built).  Your first stop will be with zoning; can you even add an addition, do you have the proper clearances from the side, front and rear property lines.  If it is a bedroom, does the septic system (perk test) support an additional bedroom.  If your building already meets or exceeds the amount of building allowed on the site or if you do not have the clearances required from the property line, your addition may be required to be removed.  There are appeal processes and variance requests you can try before tearing down the addition (Get an architect).

If your zoning review is fine, next you go to permitting.  Here you will submit plans (drawings) of what was built.  If you do not have these plans, consider hiring an Architect to generate As-Built drawings for this use.  Hopefully the plan review comes back with no changes, or you will alread know your addition is not in compliance and may face rebuilding.  Depending on the type of construction, your zoning and your local building requirements, you will be required to have inspections of your foundation / footings, the framing, the electrical, mechancial and HVAC systems, etc. affected by the work. 

This may require digging the ground back up so the inspector can confirm foundation depth, size and draingage requirements.  The interior wall finishes (gypsum board, panelling, etc) may have to be removed in some or all areas so the framing and electrical can be inspected (If one area fails, be prepared to pull all areas down).  At each inspection, if the work is found to be lacking, then you will have to correct the work before getting permission to use the room.  If there is an electrical or safety violation found, it is possible the Building Official could declare the entire property inhabitable until the offenses are corrected (IE you are homeless until it is fixed).

As you can see, you have to hope beyond belief that the builder constructed everything correctly and that the building officials will work with you to minimize the amount of deconstruction necessary to inspect the work.

Also, you will be charged all the fees associated with plan review and permitting, and you will be charged for each inspection visit (as your builder would have been charged initially had they followed the law).

As for value, here is the real concern:  If your home burns down or faces some similar disaster, your home owners insurance will balk at paying; they will blame the illegal construction as the cause.  As for the value of your building, not having a permit will make any buyer have a difficult time getting their own insurance, thus harder to sell.  The room itself will add value to your property, if it isn't a hazard (IE permitted). 

Also, taxes are based upon assessments, which use the land records.  Building without a permit, can be seen by local officials as an attempt to avoid paying property taxes, since the land records do not show the addition.  Until the official tax records reflect an accurate statement of your building, you may face fines, tax fees and other costs associated with the improvement depending upon how long it has been there unreported.

You may wish to contact a local, licensed Architect who works with the local building department.  They will know the personel, know which forms you need to fill out first and how to protect you from an overzealous Building Official (there are exceptions and options within the Code that the Building Official may forget or ignore that an Architect can request be used to prevent tear down or damage).  Next time you go to build get the Architect first to protect yourself from what this construction firm did to you.

Good luck!
Unfortunately this is not something you will easily resolve; and even if you were to win, the amount of time and funds spent will probably exceed the cost of the actual repair.

Each state has different rules on what "as-is" means, but almost all use the term when it comes to realestate sales.  At two years, you are facing a hurdle that any issue could be the result of new conditions, acceptable wear / settlement, etc.  Has there been any changes in the area? (New house built next door, new addition, earthquake, flooding, etc?)

While you may have been given a home warranty with the purchase (do check your sales paperwork to see if there is any warranty and what it covers for how long) the house is sold to you as-is; it is your responsibility to raise concerns prior to taking over the house, so going back two years later is a huge up hill batle.

The home inspector is also going to be found faultless, as their reports almost always have words like "consult with an expert. . ." after each report section and they have disclaimers for missed items, etc. I got certified as a home inspector and was surprised at just how little they actually require you to know to become an inspector. They are really just an extra pair of eyes to help inexpereinced home owners look where most people don't look or go.  You even mention that the repair work was well masked, so you didn't notice it until you began looking for it.  A good inspector might have caught it, but you won't win any court cases proving yours wasn't good enough.

The Seller will claim that any foundation issues were fixed and resolved, which is why they marked "No" on the foundation issue section.  They fixed it; so it was no longer an issue.  If it came back, that is a new issue.  You and I know this is bogus, but to win in court you have to prove intent; and the builder can easily show they thought it was fixed.  Or, they might even be able to claim they were unaware - the repairs were from the previous owner, and were hidden so well HE and YOU didn't notice them.

So the next step is to meet with your home insurance agent.  As I mentioned above, if there have been any enviromental changes (a new house next door could have changed the underground water table flow or pressures, for example) you may be covered.  Even if there are no issues, you still may have a policy that allows for major repairs to be covered after a certian cost threshold, etc.  You'd be surprised at what your home owners insurance covers - find out first; they might have in house or low cost engineers who will do the initial inspection, etc.  They also will provide advice on your home sale; if they think you have a case against the Seller.

Best of luck on this issue.  Make sure any solution you pay for solves the cause (Stress on the wall), and doesn't just fix the results (cracks).

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.
"Like a sunroom" indicating the addition has yet to be built?  If it's just a remodel there are several remodeling contractors to choose from.  If you also need the addition built pick a general contractor with experience building new construction as well as additions.  If s/he provides a price before the plans and specifications are on paper drop them like a hot potato.  They don't know what they're doing.  Whether they have the ability to provide the plans and specifications first or they refer you to an architect you must have plans to properly bid a major remodel or addition.  It is also good practice anyway just to make sure both parties are on the same page and understand exactly what will be done.

Just a note about the "type" of contractors described in another answer.  The one's who do most or all of the work themselves are not very profitable without doing something illegal or cutting corners somewhere, if they finish the job.  The time a contractor spends on a job takes away from the office time needed to run a proper business and chase new leads to keep working after your job is finished.  There are honest people out there who do everything themselves and don't need to make much money in a year but they are few and far between, typically retired and so the work as a means to keep active and make a little side money.  Others try to do a couple of jobs at once and rob from the funds of one to help pay for the other.  They just aren't experienced enough and were probably sub-contractors who suddenly thought they could run the show.  I've seen it repeatedly.  They hit up the customer for more money due to their own budget planning or abandon the job because they aren't making any more money.  be leary of a contractor who does not either use an employed or sub-contracted crew, meaning they manage the project's quality, time, and money distribution.

Todd Shell
Todd's Home Services

Home Building reviews in Brooklyn


I had a major sewer issue and the had to redo all the piping. They had to rip up the floors and get to all the piping underneath my house. It was extremely overwhelming at first but they promised to finish the job on time and they did. My floors came out amazing. I would definitely recommend them to anyone who needs a job professional done.
- Latisha H.

We paid all draws as promised and even additional money when requested. He stopped showing up and communicating weeks ago. Work quality on specifics range from fantastic to okay to sloppy, some requiring extensive re-do. His mistakes have cost him and us a lot of money and time. Projected completion times never met. Attempts to contact and reconcile this issue have been ignored. Desperate - what to do? Guess an attorney will have to resolve this because we are concerned the unfinished projects will not withstand bad weather. We really liked
Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
and his crew, but feel our trust has been not only misplaced but exploited.
- Joseph M.

It's been two years and now we have noticed little things for example our molding you can see cracks where the wall meets the molding. Also where the tile in the bathroom meets the tub there is space between that. So little things here and there that are not great but also not terrible.
- Bruce M.

Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
was very knowledgeable and we wanted to do business with him. I found his name on Angie's list and set up an appointment. He came out to look at our brick patio which needs a lot of mortar repair. He measured and was going to give us an estimate. Right after he left we rethought the repair and I called him back to discuss redoing the entire patio in bluestone instead of trying to repair the existing brick. He said that he thought that was a good idea & that he would look into pricing and get back to me. Sadly, I have not heard from him in over 3 weeks and am back to the drawing board trying to find a reputable contractor. He was very nice & perhaps didn't want to do the job. I know he is very busy and imagine he's worth waiting for!

- Bryan K.

It went great !!
Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
and his crew did an excellent job..the quality of there work was outstanding and the amount of work they got done each day was incredible..
Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
saved us money by changing a few things we were planning and took the time to explain how and why..
- Cyril G.

Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
removed an unsafe set of stairs on our back deck and replaced them with a brand new set of stairs. They were reconfigured to better utilize the space, they made them wider, and 100% more safe. They came out beautiful! They also installed a sliding glass door in our kitchen and reworked our kitchen by moving cabinets and counter tops to improve the flow and allow our refrigerator to fully open!
Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
was on time, professional, and offered solutions to fit our needs. We recommend
Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
for any home improvement project.

DO NOT DO BUSINESS WITH THIS COMPANY. I attended a patio paver workshop at this location in mid May and they were very helpful so i decided to purchase patio block from them. A BIG MISTAKE. When placing the order I told the salesman that I had a narrow (8 ft. wide) 30 ft long driveway and asked would they be able to deliver to the rear of my house. He indicated that they had a forklift that was currently being repaired. I said I had to do a lot of prep work so there was no rush. He indicated that I should just give him a few days notice of when I needed the materials. It was early
Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
when I needed the pavers delivered and I called to arrange the delivery which occurred on time.
When the driver arrived there was no forklift just a boom and he said the best he could do was drop them at the end of my driveway. I said no way and he understood. I asked where was the forklift and he laughed and told me the forklift story, basically saying the sales people would say anything. He got on the phone to the yard and spoke to someone who was able to make arrangements with another company (Anchor) to pick up the pavers from them and deliver them to me with a forklift... I HAD TO PAY $300 EXTRA FOR THIS. This driver, like the previous one, was excellent and very helpful. He delivered everything and took great care to place all (stone dust and pavers) close to the job site.
They delivered 5 pallets, as one load of pavers had a double
Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
, for 4 pallets of pavers. You pay a deposit refundable deposit ($15 per
Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
) and I paid a total of $60. Today I went to return the pallets. I could only fit four in my car so I told my salesman that I would bring the fifth one back tomorrow. His answer was that we only take pallets in good condition and they'd only take four and refund me for four. I said I wasn't asking for more money I just don't want the
Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
at my house. He said they only delivered four according to the receipt so that was all they would take. I was outraged... check the condition, they were crap when they were delivered. They took the four and refunded the $60 deposit.
- Charles K.

Brooklyn Home Builders Provider Name Locked
did a great job. He is professional & does excellent work. He helped us pick a great door that fit our needs & budget. He wrapped the wood surrounding the door so that it matched, & best of all we didn't have to replace the wood like we were going to. He also broke up a 3' section of our garage floor the entire length of the double-wide garage that was horribly damaged and repoured it. It looks wonderful. We are very pleased with the garage! We will definitely call him in the future if we need his expertise. We may ask him to replace a few windows for us next.
- Patty B.

Home Builders in Brooklyn, IA

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

A Mark of Integrity

2317 15th ave no

Abbott Construction Co

3122 Pierce St
Sioux City

Audino Frank Construction Inc

2805 W 4th St
Sioux City


1766 328TH AVE

Born Again Interiors

522 Highview drv.



Cabinets By Stac

508 W Sheridan Ave

Christian Bros. Excavating L.C.

2070 485th Street
Sioux Rapids

City Builders

2009 Center St
Cedar Falls

Creating Spaces

528 36th Street
Des Moines

DirectBuy of Indianapolis

8450 Westfield Blvd

Downing Construction Inc

2500 W. 2nd Ave.

Ducts In A Row

939 Main St

Fischer Quality Construction

300 west 32nd street


612 S Madison Ave

Freedom Foam Insulators

309 East Burlington Avenue

Frisbie Construction, LLC

PO Box 242


1724 430TH AVE

J&M Residential


Kenco Construction LLC

16303 Bluegrass RD

Kiss Construction, L.L.C.

533 19th St. SE
Mason City

M & H Construction

11652 Sperry Rd

Northwest Builders of Iowa Inc

2185 Fox Ave


11700 Plaza American Dr

Pfantz Construction

406 4th Ave NE
State Center


PO Box 484

Premier Brick & Stone

205 35th St


Story City

Remodeling Second Opinion

106 W Sunnybrook Dr




1208 1st Avenue South
Fort Dodge

Rolyn Companies, Inc.

5706 Frederick Ave


3065 160th St

S.W.E. Construction

1000 S 7Th

Scandinavian Log Homes

1861 NE 146 Street

Schaus-Vorhies Contracting, Inc.

609 W. Grimes



Sundall Construction Co

1696 260th Ave
Spirit Lake
Brooklyn Zip Codes

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