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Exterior Contractor reviews in Pocahontas

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  • The Fosters, especially David, present themselves as being skilled and professional. David gives the impression that he knows what is best because he has been doing this for a "long time". They recommended Behr Wood Stain and we chose the type of transparency we wanted. They said it had a 15 year warranty. Within one year, the stain was cracked and peeling off the deck. When I spoke to Nancy, she said that there had been other decks they had done that were also peeling and that they had had to re-stain, and that it was probably the fault of the product.
    I contacted the Fosters 5 or 6 times to come out and look at the deck to discuss what could be done about the problem. Each time I spoke to them I got excuses (they were working and didn't know when they could come out, or one of them was out of town and they would have to wait until the other one returned, etc.)   It is now three years later (June of 2012) and to my knowledge, they have never made any effort to come to our house to look at the deck or to attempt to correct their work, nor have they contacted me of their own will in order to make this right. Everything seemed to be fine when the work was done, but the fact that the deck so quickly began to peel and the Fosters'  lack of response and excuses have left me no choice but to give an "F" rating. My husband and I will do the work ourselves from now on.
    This is our first home and deck so we are learning as we go along. I think it is best to warn people before they make the same mistake we made: Do your homework and check references!

    EDITED REVIEW BELOW:

    This review has been edited for more detail and accuracy.


    The Fosters present themselves as being skilled and professional. They recommended Behr Wood Stain for our house and deck and we chose the type of transparency we wanted. They said it had a 15 year warranty. Within one year, the stain was cracked and peeling off the deck. When I spoke to Nancy, she said that there had been other decks they had applied stain to that were also peeling and that they had had to re-stain, and that it was probably bad product. She told me to get the number off the product can she would see what she could do to get the product replaced. However, I couldn't read the numbers on the can
    because they had faded with time while sitting out back of our shed. I didn't think ahead to write the product numbers on my paperwork because I didn't anticipate any problems and because I had decided to change colors with the next application.


    I contacted the Fosters 5 or 6 times to come out and look at the deck to discuss what could be done about the problem but I let several months go by between calls due to busyness and distraction.  Each time I spoke to them I got the following replies: they were working and didn't know when they could come out, or one of them was out of town and they would have to wait until the other one returned, etc.. 

    Since writing the previous review, I have discovered a problem with my telephone answering machine kept me from receiving a returned call from Nancy in June 2012. At the time I wrote the review, I did not know that a) Nancy had called about coming out to inspect the deck and that they did come out to look at it within a few days after the call. They apparently only saw the traffic area where the stain has worn away and not the other areas of the deck railings and lower traffic areas where the stain is cracked and peeling. They said that the problem was caused by our tracking gravel across the deck. That may be true in the high traffic area between our driveway and our door, but it doesn't explain why the product is cracked and peeling in low traffic areas and on the railings. We have also noticed since June, a strange substance that seems to have seeped up through the stain and hardened on a few boards, and that runs along the grain of the wood.


    This is our first home and deck so we are learning as we go along. Overall, I was disappointed by the Fosters' lack of follow-up after I called to tell them the first time (and each subsequent time that I made contact with them by phone or in public) to tell them about the problems with the deck. They seemed very eager to come out and earn the money by doing the initial work, and the work they did in staining the deck seemed to be good at the time to someone who has no experience in these matters. However, their lack of response in coming out to look at the deck and then to talk to us about what could be done when we first reported these problems with the durability of the stain was was a bit discouraging and over time, it became quite frustrating. It seemed as though they weren't as eager to repair what was wrong as they had been to do the job in the first place. However, to be fair, I think we both dropped the ball in trying to resolve this issue. Perhaps my expectations were not clearly expressed (i.e. I expect the eagerness to resolve the issue to match the eagerness to do the initial work) and I didn't do enough on my part make sure this didn't drag out to three years before I finally gave up and decided to write a review. (I wish I hadn't written a review at all.)

    I have had time to think about the first one and to realize that I didn't give the full picture of what happened when I left out my part of the scenario. I think it was unfair to the Fosters to do so. I believe this review is more accurate and fair to the Fosters.

    Oh, and there was one more thing that has caused me to want to edit the review: I was thinking about the stain on the house that they applied at the same time as they applied the stain to the deck. I haven't noticed that it is cracked and peeling, but the color is much lighter (a different product lot number) and is also closer in color to the former stain on the house than the shade of stain and contrast to the wood that is on the deck. If the house stain is not cracking and peeling like the deck stain is, then that may also confirm that the problem is with the product on the deck and not necessarily with the way the way the Fosters prepared the deck before applying the stain, which I thought was the case when I first wrote a review.

    There were a couple of issues with the wood replaced on the house: they couldn't find the same size wood at the building supply store where they shopped so the wood they replaced does not match the others along the trim of the house. Therefore, we will have to have it replaced with wood cut to order at a saw mill. Also, the siding that we agreed to have replaced was cut and patched instead of the window frame being taken off and the whole piece of siding replaced, which I expected but did not say out loud. I assumed that they would do this as professionals so that the end result would look better than it did before having the siding replaced.  (My fault. They cannot read my mind.) Also, the cut was wrong and there is a small gap (about 1/4" or so) in between the two pieces of siding where the patch was placed. I signed off on it anyway. (Again, my fault.)

    I deeply regret the first review (my first ever experience in review writing for Angie's List) and will make sure that I write all the details (seeing now how generous Angie's list is with the number of characters available for reviews). I will also reflect more carefully before writing any further reviews to make sure that they are as fair and accurate as possible. I will do to others as I would have others do to me.

    About the rating above:
    An Overall "C" rating seems accurate average of the individual ratings.

    ThePrice rating of "C" is only because the price seemed fair (reasonable) to me for the amount of work done. Whether it was higher or lower than others, I cannot say because we didn't do our homework! I don't think I can give it a better or worse rating and be completely accurate.

    A "D" Responsiveness rating because of the poor customer service when the problems arose with the deck stain cracking and peeling.

    I gave a "D" rating to the Quality of their work because the stain has not held up to the 15 year guarantee and we are very disappointed overall with the quality of the product we received for our money. However, I wish there could be another category that splits the quality between the workdone and the product used to do the work. Perhaps I would give the Behrproduct a "D" (because one lot seems to be ok while the other seems to be defective) and the Fosters would receive a "C" or maybe higher. I
    cannot quite decide if I would give them a "B" rating because I think Quality speaks to "money well spent" as well as quality of customer service. Also, the gap in the wood siding patch causes me pause in giving a "B" rating for their quality of work.

    The Fosters received a "B" rating on Punctuality because when they came to do the job, they had to delay it by one day because they were held up at another job (understandable, but yet not the date planned), but the day they came to work, they arrived early and worked hard the entire 2 or 3 days required for all the work.

    The "C" rating for Professionalism reflects the balance between their eagerness and efficient use of time when they first came to do the the work requested, the inaccurate cut of the wood siding for the patch, and their disappointing response to our contacts concerning the problems with the cracking/peeling stain on the deck.
    - Jo S.
  • BEFORE I HIRE STEVE SMITH CONSTRUCTION I HAD FIRED 4 SETS OF CARPENTERS. I WAS IN REMODEL NIGHTMARE FOR OVER A YEAR AND A HALF. WHEN I HIRED THIS COMPANY, I WAS GIVEN A TIMELINE OF WHEN THE WORK WOULD BE COMPLETED AND IT WAS. HIS WORK IS TO PERFECTION. HE NEVER COMPLAINED IF I CHANGED MY MIND OR ADDED MORE WORK TO THE JOB. HIS CREW WAS THERE TO DO WHAT I WANTED DONE. SMITH CONSTRUCTION TOOK CARE OF ALL MY NEEDS. THEY TOOK THE NIGHTMARE AWAY FROM ME AND HANDLED EVERYTHING. MY HOME IS VERY BEAUTIFUL NOW. I WILL BE HIRING THEM AGAIN TO ADD ON MORE ROOMS. SMITH CONSTRUCTION TAKES THE HEADACHE OUT OF REMODELING AND CONSTRUCTION.
    - DOROTHY M.
  • Love her love her crew. Love my house now thanks to them
    - kamulla m.
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Home Exterior Specialists in Pocahontas

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