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Do I Really Need a Building Permit?

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Home Builder reviews in Longmont

  • F
    Structural Repair Company
    We were looking to add an external door to our basement. This would require a fair amount of excavation. Based on a recommendation from a friend, we contacted Greg Rickstrew. Greg provided a quote and told me that his first action would be to submit a permit application. He asked for 50% of the quoted price. The 50% deposit was $7,500. After a couple weeks he came back and told me that he had the permit and would start with excavation. In mid-September 2018 he brought in a mini-excavator to begin the excavation process. He removed about 8 cubic yards of dirt and removed the window well. In the process he also damaged the water line that feeds my back yard sprinklers. He told me at that time that he would need a full size excavator to complete the excavation. He also told me that he had damaged the sprinkler line and would be by the house in a couple days to patch the line so I could blow out my sprinklers. After a couple days he did not show up. I ask him when he would be out to repair the sprinkler line and finish the excavation. He told me that he would be out tomorrow to repair the sprinkler line and that he was having trouble getting a full size excavator. This pattern continued for a few weeks. He always had an excuse for not coming out to repair the sprinkler. In mid-october I repaired the sprinkler line so I could blow out the lines. He continued to say that the excavator would be available soon. The full size excavator was delivered on October 31st 2018. On November 1st and 2nd he hauled away the 8 cubic yards of dirt and completed the excavation. I was not aware that he had removed the 8 yards because he told me that all of the dirt would remain on my property until the concrete work for the stairwell was complete. In this whole process he also damaged 16 feet of my fence. He asked for another $1,000 to cover the additional cost of the full size excavator and concrete materials. At this point I am out of pocket $8,500. He was out at the house a few times during November working on the rebar for the concrete. I had not seen the permit yet so I asked him several times for a copy of the permit during November. He kept saying he had it and that he would bring it tomorrow. At the end of November we submitted for a permit to finish our basement. The basement drawings included the external door. After the basement plans were submitted we got a call from the city asking about the external door. I told them it was another project but it wasn���t complete yet. They told me that they did not have a permit application for the external door. I immediately called Greg to find out why he told me that he had the permit. He told me that he had gotten it confused with another project and that he would apply for the permit tomorrow. He did not apply for the permit for two more weeks. He told me that his appendix had burst. At this time we are in mid-December. I called the city to confirm that he had submitted the application. They said he did, but that engineering approved drawings had several sections that had white-out on them and they would need a fresh set of approved drawings from Greg. He told me that he would have the fresh drawings in the next few days. This dragged in to early January. I talked with the city again and they told me that they still had not received anything from Greg. During that call we went through the setback requirements for my property and found that the permit would not be approved as submitted even if he had provided fresh drawings. I called Greg again and he told me that he would be applying for a variance and that the city planning commission met on February 7th, 2019. I called the city again a confirmed that the planning commission did in fact meet on February 7th. Against our better judgment we decided to wait to see what the result of the variance request would be. I called the city on February 8th and they told me that the variance was never applied for. I at that time I contacted Greg and he told me that he didn���t have time to apply for the variance. I gave him until February 18th to return the $8,500. I talked to him on February 17th and he told me that he would drop off a check tomorrow before 5pm. I have not been able to get ahold of Greg since the call on the 17th. We were left with no window well, an exposed gas main and a huge hole in our side yard from early November through most of February. We hired another company to replace the window well and fill in the hole. This cost us $4,000. This is when we discovered that Greg had removed the 8 yards of dirt. I had to spend another $600 to get 8 yards of dirt and 3 tons of river rock to undo everything he had done to our home. I am out a total of $13,100 plus the time I have spent working with Greg. Greg is associated with DC Basement Company and Structural Repair Company
    - Sam H.
  • F
    Vargas Construction LLC
    Mark Vargas was hired over a year ago to rebuild my home after a devastating fire. He completely mismanaged my two payments to him. He fired his entire crew for disputes over pay. He failed to do the required inspections per the building permit requirements. His communication isn't poor, it's non-existent. I supplied him with two men to help and he immediately pulled "my men" off the job to repair a deck in Boulder. My plans called for "pre engineered struts". Mark lied to me about their delivery and instead had a handyman build struts in the backyard. Mark rarely visited the job site and when he did, he was only there for a few minutes. Mark would have his mother deliver lumber rather than have it delivered by the lumber company. Mark would lie to the crew on when they were going to get paid. In my opinion, he is totally incompetent. I am considering filing a law suit under the Colorado Elder Abuse statute. Lou Hughes
    - LOU H.
  • F
    Lafayette Construction
    They terrorized my house. They are horrible and I would not recommend them at all. They did work without permits, they lost their license during the job and didn't tell me. She took $40,000 from me that's basically for work she didn't do. There are probably five or six other businesses that she affected. Nobody else will touch the property, I can't get permits pulled on it. So, now I'm having to call the lender to see if I can do a deed in lieu of a foreclosure or file bankruptcy.
    - Alicia W.
  • A
    Charlie was great to work with.  We had to postpone the deck until September to resolve issues with a death in the family.  He was very understanding and compliant.  He was very helpful with suggestions.
    We were amazed that they completed the deck in less than 3 days, including the framing inspection. 
    Charlie didn't want the final check until we were satisfied.  There was a minor issue with adding mortar to the faux rock siding to meet the top of the deck where it meets the house wall.  Charlie got that resolved quickly and it looks fine.  We love using it.
    These guys built a better deck than I would have!
    - Raymond H.
  • A
    Murphy's Home LLC
    The service was fantastic. They are the best builders I have ever worked with. I have worked with a lot of builders throughout the course of my years as a banker. He is really good. He is easy to work with and very accommodating to the changes we wanted to make throughout the process. The subcontractors he hired were excellent and the quality of the work was great.
    - JAMES C.
  • A
    Visionary Builders LLC
    Pantry turned out awesome.. better than we expected within a tight space.  The dry wall was fantastic.... couldn't even tell there was a hole there before.  Very reasonable. On time.  great job
    - Gerry S.
  • A
    Wildwood Joinery & Design
    Michael is the most incredible contractor I have ever worked with.  He is very creative and takes the time to understand a problem.  He is great at communication.  He is also really clean!  I didn't know that was possible!  Of course, there was dust, but we were totally able to live in the room adjacent to where he was working during the job.  Awesome guy.  I am talking with him about doing another job currently. 
    - SUSAN P.
  • D
    Century Communities
    When we bought, we wanted a larger lot, but they wouldn't let us get one because we wanted to close in June and they said the premium lots would be complete in May. So, we got a smaller lot, and signed the contract. We were told that the home would likely be done early, but that they would wait until June 2nd to close. The home was supposed to be drywall complete April 24th. By April they had not even started digging, so we stated to get concerned. We spoke with our sales rep and asked for a corporate number after he gave us excuse after excuse for a month. H refused to give it to us. This continued until we looked up their number online. We called and left a message. After no response, we called again a day later, and the day after that. A week later, we still had no response, so we looked up the number for the VP of operations. We left daily messages for about a week.
    At this point, interest rates had gone up, and we were past the point in time we were supposed to lock our mortgage rate. They took another jump, and we were concerned that the new rates raised our monthly payment by about $600. We switched to hourly messages. Finally, we got a call back from the VP of operations. He gave us some excuses (sub-contractors leaving to work with other builders, a wood contract that fell through, weather, etc...) but was un-willing to work with us to give us a firm close date or to help us get our payment back down to near where it was... his response was always"By the contract you signed, we have 24 months to build your home, and no verbal promises have any validity." After that call, he passed us on to someone else who suggested we go back to the design center to remove some options we had chosen. So, we did.
    After removing the options, interest rates continued to rise, basically cancelling the savings we had scraped together. We started calling again to cancel our contract, but again they wouldn't return calls or answer. 45 days later they finally called and said they would cancel the contract but were keeping our $7500 earnest and $300 of our options deposit. Needless to say, we weren't happy, and after another long, drawn out process that involved us paying to get the numbers for the owners of the company and calling them at home and leaving messages with their wives, we finally got a call back and they agreed to return most of our money. 
    So - buyer beware - they have great floorplans, seem to build quality homes, but are horrible to work with, and you should plan on about a 24 month build time, regardless of what they say.
    - Chris V.
  • A
    Petra Custom Builders
    Steve has been great to work with on both a personal and results level.  He really knows his stuff and the quality of his work shows this.  During the projects he keeps the work site clean, shows up regularly and lets you know if there are any expected delays ahead of time.  By communicating throughout the project, he ensures that any changes or unexpected issues are resolved to meet your expectations.  We have worked with several different contractors over the years in construction and have found Steve to be the best of all of them. We will definitely use him for any future projects and highly recommend him to all of our friends.
    - Chris D.
  • F
    Metro Reconstruction Services, Inc.

    See above.

    In  response to the provided below, I don't know where he got the idea that I wasn't interested in what they said and what work they would do. I never said that I knew what the exact  PROBLEM WAS, I ONLY PROVIDED INFORMATION OF WHERE I WAS GETTING WATER and what I thought.  They are the experts. I wanted a quote so that I could move forward on the repairs. I doubt  that I would have been unhappy with what they might have proposed.

    - Ralph F.
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Home Builders in Longmont

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