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Closet Design reviews in Jamaica Plain

  • A
    We hired United Remodeling to remodel our master bedroom including bumping up/out our shallow closet to maximize the wasted space in the room, adding built in bookcases including a hidden desk, installing crown molding, and repairing our walls and painting the room to finish it.. We pursued several quotes and were not only pleasantly surprised that they were able to do everything within our budget but also that they were able to schedule right away. We worked directly with owner, Giovani Petry, who supervised the project and deployed his team along with a great office manager, Jackie who was coordinating everything from the contract to scheduling. We had to provide the design of the room, which we were able to do easily but showing various pictures from Houzz and Pinterest. The project ran a bit longer than expected by two weeks which we discussed as feedback and were pleased with the resolution. Their customer service went above an beyond to ensure we were happy clients and as a result, we trust them even more. We even received a handwritten note thanking us for our business! We recently hired them again to do some plaster repair and painting that we've been putting off! Glad to be working with them again.
    - Caitlin W.
  • A
    Mike Bauman is a real pleasure to work with- as an older single woman, I had had past bad experiences with being talked down to or patronized by male contractors, but that was never the case with Mike. It really felt like we were working together to plan my project and make revisions as we went along. If subcontractors made mistakes, he saw to it that they were corrected at no additional cost to me. I am very pleased with the final results!
    - Candace C.
  • A
    The crew and their manager were all a pleasure to work with, all performed excellent service, they were patient and intelligent, advising and offering custom solutions to our new home that were both achievable and a huge improvement. We would hire Maximum Renovations again and recommend them to anyone.
    - Conrad W.
  • A
    Construction started on time. The employees were respectful and cleaned up at the end of each day. They made any minor changes requested on-the-spot. Their work was beautiful and professionally done with no short cuts taken. The majority of the work was completed on time. The inspection process took longer than expected but this was due to the inspector providing incomplete instruction on what changes were needed. We recommend Marco Polo based on the quality of the work at a competitive price.
    - Tess N.
  • A
    I found the DiOrio team a pleasure to work with. James worked with us on preparing the quote and we worked closely with both James and Dennis throughout the project. I found them, their team, and their subcontractors to be excellent to work with and very honorable guys. Overall, these guys pit an incredible amount of care and attention into their work, and clearly take pride in what they do. They do not seem to cheap out on materials and always seem to do things the right way (and I am a mechanical engineer who is quite picky about workmanship). They will follow the contract to a T, which is great in that they will not leave you hanging on anything but be sure to clearly identify everything you want done, who is responsible for everything and when.
    We started with a single large basement space (about 1000ft^2) that was a single room with very dated paneling. The team demo'ed the existing paneling very neatly. They then took this single large space and turned it into a beautiful new space that is essentially a whole new floor of our home. It how has a den, three rooms, closets, and a new full bathroom. As I noted, the workmanship in both the rough work and finish work was very carefully done with great attention to detail. They did all of the final painting and trimwork, and the flooring came out great. They also coordinated the plumber who I found to do a great job, and the electrician who spent a lot of time with us also doing great, careful, neat work.
    I would recommend these guys, and will likely consider them again for a couple other jobs we have around the home.
    - Greg F.
  • A
    We were very pleased with the work done by Marcello's Renovations, as well as with the way it was done.  The results are fantastic and were aided by the quality of workmanship and suggestions offered by the team.  In particular, we were amazed with the responsiveness of the project manager.  Jared was fully engaged and was very easy to reach with questions and for coordination. Jared also provided many suggestions, with photo samples to consider, which ultimately led to a much better outcome than if he simply followed our initial request.  The team that did the work was always very careful to conduct their activities in a manner which limited the disruption of the construction on our living space and stayed within the strict rules imposed by our condo association regarding work hours, insurance, etc.  The 'end of engagement' comprehensive cleaning they provided left our apartment cleaner than when they started!  We definitely know who to call for future renovation projects, and will be quite comfortable recommending Marcello's Renovations to our friends.
    - Manuel C.
  • B
    They were super expensive so we didn't go with them. She was very helpful and professional. It was just an expensive service. I think it was almost like $2000 to build a closet. It was pretty high. The woman who came out was very nice and very professional but they didn't do work for me. They presented themselves wonderfully. She was organized. She came out. She was on time. She went through the whole consult with me. She did like a schematic. She was good. They were pretty good. If I can afford it, I will use them.
    - paula c.
  • C
    Dda's estimate was higher than others', and the reviews we read here and on Yelp indicated that Dan can be easily insulted and quirky, but we picked them anyway because their schedule met our needs, Dan seemed to have a good eye for design, and because the carpenter (Noel) and plasterer (Bernie) got good reviews for quality. I can confirm that Dan does have an eye for design and project planning, and that Noel's rough carpentry and Bernie's plastering work is very good.  However, I would strongly caution anyone against hiring this company for crown molding, or probably any other kind of finish carpentry, and I would generally caution anyone against working with DdA unless you get all of your expectations about the quality of the work committed to on paper. Ask lots of questions about the specific skill set of the crew for each bit of work, and exactly what the finished results will look like, and what they will do if things don't end up that way. Buyer beware.

    I went to the project site several times to inspect progress. The rough carpentry and plastering were done nicely. On my third trip, to see the freshly installed crown molding, I could see that it had not been mitered at the correct angles in several corners, such that the edges lined up unevenly. This left a "lip" in some cases where one edge extended past another, and a "gap" in other cases where some or all of the edge didn't meet the edge of the neighboring piece.  In still other cases where the crown molding was just supposed to stop rather than wrap around a corner, there was a gap between the "return" piece and the wall. Finally, along the length of the crown molding, there was a clearly visible gap where the crown molding meets the wall, in some places as much as 1/8"-1/4" wide, which was very visible from most vantage points.

    I called Dan as soon as I saw these issues and he assured me that this was just the roughing-in step, and that they had a whole second day reserved to fix up everything with caulk (tubes of DAP). I expressed concern that some of the gaps seemed rather large to fix with caulk, and that I didn't understand how mismatched edges (particularly protruding corners) were going to be fixed with caulk and leave a smooth, paintable surface.  He assured me it would produce a good result.  That evening after work I researched crown molding installation issues and learned that caulk is indeed a standard solution to very small cracks, but that professional-grade work doesn't require a lot of caulk, especially not in corners, where the two mitered edges are supposed to line up without a big gap or a lip.  I wrote Dan an email explaining my concerns, and in the morning we talked on the phone and agreed to meet at the project site.

    This is the point in our project where Dan started to exhibit seriously unprofessional behavior.  When I got there, he was removing masking tape from the floor and first just ignored me while I crouched next to him saying hello. (Update 11/24 - the tape appears to have permanently marred the floor in that one location, which I didn't notice until two days later.)  I started walking around the rooms inspecting the crown molding and Dan joined me after a few minutes. We agreed to walk the whole apartment together. Many of the small gaps between the lower edge of the crown molding and the wall had been effectively sealed with caulk, but there were still small gaps along some of the seams, one whole room hadn't been addressed at all, and the largest gap (a 1/4" gap about 2 feet long) was still just as wide.  I mentioned that my online research said that for gaps this large, one needs to use plaster to re-grade the wall to meet the molding. Dan didn't respond. As we walked through the apartment, he trailed sullenly behind me by several feet, sometimes looking at his feet or out the window as I pointed at various spots, calmly pointing out mismatched edges. I said some were so mismatched that they might need to be recut if it's not possible to make the mismatch disappear with caulking and patching. Dan said nothing.  We got done walking the whole apartment and then we were interrupted by a phone call I'd been waiting on.  When I tried to resume the conversation, Dan said they all needed to get to work, and didn't I have to get to work, too?  I told him yes, but that I wanted to know what his thoughts were on the various issues I'd pointed out.  He said curtly that they would spend some time that day fixing those spots as I wanted, in addition to re-placing the doorbell ringer back where it goes (which had left an exposed hole in the wall), and cleaning up the project site. Then he opened the door for me to leave. Seriously unprofessional.  Later in the day he called and said they were done, that the only thing left for them to do was to install some folding closet doors that hadn't arrived yet.

    The next morning I went to the project site again, and noticed a few improvements, several remaining deficiencies, and a few ADDITIONAL issues.  Along the length of the crown molding, most of the thin gaps had been effectively filled with smooth caulk, with no leakage onto the adjacent wall. The 1/4" gap was filled with caulk, too, and it didn't look good.  A couple of the corners looked better, but many did not.  He said they had used plaster and sanding to re-work the mis-matched corners, but I saw no evidence of this, just caulking and clear glue.  Indeed, several corners looked WORSE than the day before because there were now big globs of plasticky caulking on the surface of the crown molding, and even smeared on the walls below in several spots.  The doorbell ringer had not been moved back into place, so there was a clearly visible hole in the wall above my front door.  

    I also noticed two things that had escaped my attention previously: some newly installed baseboards produced very poorly matched edges, such that both have a very visible "lip" of wood protruding past the adjacent piece; and a bit of trim that was supposed to be installed around the top of a support column was missing.  So I called Dan again, and told him that some things definitely looked better, but also explained the issues I was still seeing.  I started talking about the crown molding, and he flatly stated that they are "DONE dealing with the crown molding."  I said it's not done, though.  He said they're "DONE with it!" and that I'll "have to hire someone else" if I want it fixed any further.  I told him I can't pay him his last installment if the work isn't done, and he said fine, and that he would return the spare keys he still had.  I sent him a follow-up email with photos showing examples of the problems I was still seeing with the crown molding, and also detailed the other few items that still needed to be done (the folding closet doors, the doorbell, the column trim, and removal of a small pile of construction debris from my back porch) and said that, independent ofthe crown molding issue, these items needed to be done or I would consider him in breach of contract. I also wrote and posted the first version of this review, ending with "I hope to update this later with a more positive outcome."

    The next day I'd arranged to start painting with two friends - I planned to start with the ceilings in the hope that the crown molding issue might yet be resolved. Dan emailed and called to say that Noel would be back to deal with the four items I'd emailed him about. I said fine. Noel showed up and started working on those items and our little painting crew stayed out of his way. An hour or so later, Dan showed up and was suddenly civil, even cordial, asking if we might talk privately somewhere. He asked if he might hear my concerns again. This time he listened. He asked clarifying questions. He got up on a step ladder to look closely at what I was talking about. Ultimately he decided to send Noel on to the next job while he, Dan, stayed behind to give it a last shot with the crown molding, using caulk and Patch-n-Paint. It was like talking to a completely different person.

    Admittedly, at that point I was so concerned that I'd be left with crappy crown molding that I ratcheted down my expectations. I didn't bring up the two-foot-long, 1/4" gap between one wall and the crown molding above it, which Noel had stuffed with a thick bead of caulking and which is still clearly visible as a cheap fix. I gave up the idea that anyone was going to recut the two bits of baseboard that meet very poorly at two corners. And I was willing to accept any amount of improvement in the worst of the mismatched crown corners. To Dan's credit, he did a good job fixing almost every problematic corner, spending several hours sanding, patching, caulking, smoothing, and removing most of the glops that had been messily smeared on neighboring surfaces. (The next day I did a few more touch-ups to the crown, and still need to revisit the baseboards to see if additional patching and sanding will bring them in line, but it's WAY less work left for me to deal with than before.)

    So then I had to wonder why this was all so contentious and difficult in the first place. I never raised my voice or was nasty in any way that might warrant such unprofessional behavior. It was confusing when he suddenly switched 180 back to the civil, agreeable person I'd met on day one, offering me a handshake and asking "Are we OK?" It reminded me of the time I lived with a manic depressive roommate for a year - you just never knew which person was going to be there when you got home.
    - Stefanie S.
  • A
    This was a huge job.  Overall, the quality was fantastic and the work was very professional.   Mike uses subcontractors for some work and they were all amazing!! He definitely has high standards for his sub contractors.  The completion date did get pushed back a couple times, but I think that is par for the course in contracting.  Overall, would definitely recommend mike - he was wonderful and his work was fantastic.
    - Jessica B.
  • A
    Segio is a very professional and knowledgeable contractor who also happens to be a very decent, honest person. It was a pleasure working with him, and also with his team of Brazilian skilled tradesmen, despite the pain associated with any major renovation in one's home. He took on our job early in the summer and started the following week. Sergio could give us a better price by doing both bathrooms at once, while always leaving us a functioning toilet and--except for a few days--a working shower. Because Sergio juggles multiple jobs, and because of the unavailability of some tiles and the fact that we added extras like the foam insulation and the threshold-less shower along the way, there were occasional delays. However, the project moved steadily on. The final result looks and works great, and is a wonderful improvement over our old bathrooms.

    While all the workmen on Sergio's team were great, we particularly appreciated the fact that Fabrizio, the tile installer, went out of his way to make sure the project turned out well. On Sergio's recommendation we hired Sotiris Sotiropoulos of Spray Foam Insulation to insulate the bathrooms at a good price, which worked out well. Sergio's electrician, Edney Leite, also did some separate work for us to replace our several fuse boxes with a single modern breaker box, which we are very pleased with. On Sergio's advice, we bought most of our bathroom fixtures from Moniques, where Pat Viglirolo was great to work with. We bought our tiles from the Brazilians Eddie and Herman Souto at United Tile America.
    - Kay S.
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Closet Designers And Builders in Jamaica Plain

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