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General Contracting reviews in Livermore

  • A
    Al Navarro Construction
    Al's work is top-notch. Shelves are sturdy, the shed sides are a perfect match (he even primered them for me), and he mounted a light in the attic space after installing the access door. He is prompt, neat, and friendly. He discussed options for each project with me to make sure his ideas matched mine. Whether he was positioning the tissue holders in the bathrooms or designing shelving, I was involved in each step so there were no unpleasant surprises (for either of us).
    - Colleen D.
  • A
    Philips Remodeling

    Ben and Chris are amazing!  They did a fantastic job on our bathroom/bedroom/closet remodel and were extremely professional in the treatment of our home. We hired Philp's remodeling to gut our existing bathroom, expand the bathroom into what was our original closet, then move the entry into an adjoining bedroom so that room could be turned into a large walk-in closet/sitting room.  The original bathroom had considerable dry rot and needed repair the walls, plumbing and  reinforcement in the floors.   The job included moving sewage, pluming and electrical as well as moving the entry to a different wall and adding a window.  In all, we doubled the size of our bathroom.  They did an incredible job moving everything to the exact spot that we wanted.  Every aspect of the job was done with great attention to detail and  precision.  Ben was great at checking with me on even the smallest details, from where the outlets would be placed to the height of the lighting pendants to the location of the niche and deco tile in the shower.  He even accompanied me on a trip to the tile store to ensure that the tile I picked out was the best quality for my money.  He offered great suggestions or ideas on the areas that I was unsure of.  They even made repairs to plumbing for our other bathroom that were noticed when the wall between the two rooms was open.  I had mistakenly ordered the wrong size door for the bathroom and rather than have to reorder another custom door that would have cost me well over a thousand dollars, Ben and Chris extended the door to the necessary size with no detectible seam, saving me hundreds.  I can honestly say that there is not one aspect of the bathroom that I would have done differently.  I love every detail.  In addition, they added recessed lighting to our bedroom and created a beautiful double entry into the closet.  During the two months that they worked in our home they took time each day to cover our hardwood floors with wood panels and plastic and ended each day by vacuuming.  We were not able to move out of our bedroom, but there was little evidence that each day there had been construction occurring in the space.  If I didn't get home from work before they left, I would be updated by a phone call or a text message from Ben. He was also great at letting me know about additional costs that we were incurring because of additional work we requested.  In all, they were more than fair in the pricing and I feel like we got much more than what we had paid for.  Plus, they won over the affection of our two dogs, who can be quite intimidating and protective of our home.  After just a couple of weeks, the dogs would wait for Ben and Chris to arrive and treated the men as members of our household.  Every morning I wake up and get to use my beautiful new bathroom and beautiful new walk-in closet and it makes every day start off great!  I would use Philips remodeling again in a heartbeat.


    - Kelly S.
  • D
    Keith's Handyman Service (Keith Henson)
    We didn't realize Keith hadn't included in his quote, finishing all the transitions and molding (that we had available for this purpose). In my request for a written quote, I was actually trying to help us both by clarifying the work to be performed by Keith, so we would clearly understand what would and would not be done. We should have spent more time talking about this, and writing down these details, as Keith's written quote was a two line email. Incorrect finishing: I reviewed several professional laminate installation guides , and gluing down transitions onto concrete, on a floating floor, is an OK option. However, you are supposed to glue to the concrete, not to the flooring, as your Keith did. The flooring needs to be free to expand and contract. Gluing to the smooth laminate was unsuccessful as they broke free less than one hour after removing the tape the next day. Finally, Keith's somewhat random placement of the transitions at the doors is the most confusing to me, particularly the one between the existing bathroom transition and the flooring transiting, which has a noticeable 3/4 inch gap between them. Several damaged pieces and gaps at joints were also a sign of poor workmanship. It's these items that led me not to have Keith return to "fix stuff". I did not feel that having him rework these items to our satisfaction would be an attainable goal as Keith appeared satisfied with his work.
    - Alan R.
  • F
    VANDERBILT CONSTRUCTION INC
    I would caution anybody from using this construction firm.  Our house burned down and Vanderbilt came and did a bid.  They quoted a very reasonable price at the time and said they specialized in smoke and fire damage.   I questioned many of the items they had on the bid because I knew they were quoted very low.  For example the windows they quotes 3500 and I know that because we had replaced our windows with Milgard that may cover 2 of the sliding glass doors.   They said that they would work out any issues with the insurance company.   After we signed the agreement with them we didn't hear anything for weeks.  Every product they tried to install in our house was of substandard quality and when I insisted to replace what we had they would tell me there would be a supplemental charge.  The whole job was a nightmare and I was stuck between the insurance company and Mike Bouchard (owner).   Our project manager changed 3 times during the job and it was always very difficult to get anyone to call me back.  I consulted an attorney about not paying them but they said that it would cost more to go to court than I would get back and that the laws favor the constrution industry.   It has been 6 years since our house was completed but when I found out about Angie's list I couldn't not post this to warn others.  I am not even sure they are still in business but if they are or if Mike Bouchard has opened another business, I would not use them under any circumstances and I guarantee you will regret it.   He is personally dishonest and runs his business in a dishonest fashion.
    - Lorraine B.
  • C
    Custom Exteriors Inc
    I'll start with a summary. The job started with TEAM A, who did a very poor job all along the way. TEAM A was fired by me, and they brought on TEAM B. TEAM B was very good at their job, and just unfortunate that I didn't get TEAM B to start with. The teams are independent of management, so management needs to be rated separately. So, manager A that came with TEAM A was a great guy, but really a sales guy with no influence over TEAM A. But to his discredit, he kept claiming that TEAM A was "Their best team", issue after issue, when they were so very clearly not (My opinion is that this was just a line fed to me). So after all the trouble and damage to my house, I got the owner Kevin involved. He's an honest guy, and wanted to make good on the job. But he only showed up when I was raving mad, and didn't oversee the job as I expected (and specifically asked for), nor did he push to finish the details of the job out in a timely manner. The job that was a one month job drug out to be three months in the end, and left us believing we were just a "small job" and only worth a little attention. The job started off horribly with TEAM A. They were careless during the demolition work of the stucco, and did needless damage to our front door and interior walls. During the demolition of the chimney, the did nothing to protect the inside of the house, and the hole house, top to bottom, was covered in soot and ash. They knew they did this, and took off, leaving us in this mess of a house, that was not even safe to occupy. We staid up cleaning until 3am after realizing how bad it really was. I explained how this was effectively a "fire damaged" house now, and that it would require professional restoration cleaning, and that they were NOT TO CLEAN themselves. They ignored this and cleaned the house themselves after I left for work. I came home to a soaking wet house, with all my new furniture sitting on sopping wet carpet (the wettest carpet I've ever seen), and the house was closed up tight, it felt like a sauna. All the soot was just driven into the carpet. My new wood arm chair (expensive) was left outside to get wet by sprinklers and weather. I exploded, and they finally hired a restoration company (great company, I'll review separately). They had to clean our house twice to get it cleaned up, largely because of the first failed cleaning attempt by TEAM A. First time the cleaners came it required a team of 7 people a full day to wipe down ceilings, walls, every surface of the house, all the kids toys, etc. After this, my faith was destroyed, but I let MANAGER A talk me into a another chance for TEAM A. They started work again in a similar manner. TEAM A left things like boxes of razor blades laying in my yard, and rarely did a good job cleaning up at the end of the day. My 1 year old walked up to me holding a hand full of razor blades(she didn?t get cut, or there would have been Dr. bills involved as well). I alerted them to this, and the next day still found razor blades in my kids play area. Details of the job were horrible. Sockets were not replaced as planned, soffit vents were not put in before the scratch coat was put up, electrical outlets were stuffed with stucco, stucco was left on yard lights, in the lawn, covering my phone and cable boxes. Plywood went up ok. They hammered on the lath instead of stapling it up, so grout work was damaged in the house as the hammering knocked it out. And every part of the details of the job I asked for (and was promised) was ignored. The weep screed was not up against the foundation. Power lines for the AC compressor were not sufficiently accounted for, and would have been permanently damaged/shorted (fire risk) the way they went about it (and they NEVER fixed it after repeated requests). Then the stucco when up, and it was bad. Badly mixed, badly applied, put up on a 100 Deg day and not kept wet, so it didn't cure properly and was falling off the wall (called ?soft? cure). So I had a new struggle to convince them to remove all the stucco work and have the job done properly. Livermore permit inspectors were in agreement with me, so that helped. The problem is, that the owners and mangers do not know these jobs themselves. So they could not come inspect and tell for themselves if the job was done well or not. I consider this a HUGE gap. If I owned this company for all those years, I'd know the job well enough to tell for myself when a job was done correctly or not. Luckily, I've been around construction much of my life, so I knew the job was bad. Your average home owner would have not known, and would have gotten a very bad job that would have started to crack and fail in a few years. I very much have to wonder how many bad jobs TEAM A had performed before. They clearly lacked training and pride in their work. Enter TEAM B, after much frustration and hard fighting by me, I got a great team. All went well and smoothly. They listened to the details that I wanted to see in the job and got them done. Well. With pride in their work. And they did it quickly, even though my job was more of a side job for them. But they knocked it out in great time (I got lucky as it fit in between bigger jobs for them). The team members were more professional and friendlier as well. They finished the big part of the job and left. Finishing details of the work was left to other teams, and that seemed to drag on and on. So, in the end, you MUST INTERVEIW THE WORK TEAM. Managers are just quoting the work and them farming out the work to independent teams. The teams are paid for the job, so the faster they work, the better their pay. You have to meet the team and find out if they are who you want. IF you get the right team, you'll get the right job done. The management does not really know, other than feedback from customers, who the good teams are. And most customers don't know construction, so bad work does go unnoticed, and the managers don't show up on sight to inspect the details of the job, and don't know the work themselves. You can make a pretty wall, and have it be structurally unsound. And unfortunately, one of the most critical parts of a stucco job is not inspected by inspectors. So after the scratch coat is done, CALL THE INSPECTORS IN before they do the next coat. The scratch coat is the most important layer. Have the inspectors tell you if it looks good. If there is any doubt, you can hire an independent company to measure samples of the stucco, and they can tell you if there is a problem very accurately. They measure the mix, hardness, and can even tell you if it cured too quickly (problems on hot days, like I had). TEAM A rated an F, and TEAM B rated an A. Therefore the overall C rating. Price, they were the highest, but they also promised the best job, and the sales guy convinced me all the details that I was concerned about would be done. So I opted for the most expensive. After all the issues, and that they didn't kick my job into high gear after all the issues, bothers me. But they can absolutely claim that they fulfilled all their obligations. They also took the necessary hits by having to hire external cleaning teams without any hesitation (but I did have to insist on it). In the end, the job I got from TEAM B was good, management support was what they had to do from a contract and liability standpoint, but nothing beyond. I gave them more support and cost breaks (not having to replace carpet, pay for clothing sent to cleaners, damaged photographs, supplying hardware, cleaning up details of the job, etc.) than managment gave me. I gave more, and expected more. TEAM B responsiveness and quality are A. All the issues with TEAM A and having to hassle to get a good job drug the overall rating to a C. Management only reliably responded when I was raving mad. And did not respond to other communications at all, and would not provide any hard time lines for work to be done. So responsiveness is a C due to management. TEAM A responsiveness was great. And in the end, management was simply relying on them (and luckily it was safe to do that, but for a customer you gave so many headaches to, it would have been better to not take this approach). So, if I had to do this again, I?d hire a company that specializes in stucco specifically to do the stucco work. And simply because the guy quoting the work, can oversee the work, and may very well be doing the work. So there is a direct connection between quality and who you need to talk with to verify the quality.
    - Garry R.
  • A
    GT General Contractor
    George was prompt and showed up the first day when he was supposed to. He and his helper were here for nine working days and he showed up on time every day in a row, except for the weekend. They put plastic film on the carpet to avoid trashing it and cleaned up every evening. They got done the day before Christmas Eve which was excellent timing.
    - Robert E.
  • A
    Tri-Valley Engineering LTD
    It was always a game of telephone tag with him. I had to constantly leave messages. He had a heart attack a month before, which could have been a mitigating factor. I had expected it to cost $2,000. His documents were very detailed though. After looking at the product, the price seemed reasonable. I didn't feel I got ripped off.
    - RICHARD Y.
  • A
    AA Builder
    It went great , it looks beautiful
    - Laura R.
  • A
    Exterior Remodeling Specialists
    His employees were there every day at 8:30 sharp worked all day for three days.
    cleaned up everyday left the the property very clean
    Courteous answered all of my many questiones
    - George P.
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General Contractors in Livermore

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