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Home Builder reviews in Sudbury

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  • I honestly can't recommend Leanza Builders highly enough. We remodeled a stairway in our house and it took about 2 weeks to complete. Everyone who came into my house treated it with respect. The crews were polite, professional and excellent craftsmen. I am thrilled with the stairway. It exceeded my expectations.
    - Amelia F.
  • Bill is a top notch craftsman that truly cares about the quality of his work and the houses he works on. He strives to do the job "right". His approach to jobs and clients is as a long term relationship, so doing a great job and satisfying our wishes and expectations is always a priority. He would like his work to long out last us. He and his staff are respectful, thoughtful and professional. ONER tries to work within our budget, typically providing different approaches, options, and budget levels. They are fair and if the unexpected arises (as they do with antiques), they will do their best to not bust the budget. ONER stands by their work. At times, they have higher expectations of their work than we did. Time and time again, we have been thrilled by the quality and result the of work performed. We will continue to use ONER and highly recommend ONER.
    - Venson S.
  • Jassan and his crew came through yet again for my parents. After the hurricane, he was right there to take the tree off of the house and patch the roof. Over the next few weeks, he repaired all of the interior and exterior damage and it now looks better than new. Last year, Riverstone created a beautiful handicap ramp and porch that have generated many compliments from friends and family. Jassan and his workers are friendly, honest, and working to do a job to be proud of every time. Jassan responds to every communication and follows up with written estimates in a timely manner. He is great at figuring out ways to solve construction problems with the least amount of disruption and cost. Riverstone Construction is a great company and I highly recommend them!
    - Mark W.
  • Review of Deck and Three Season Room Project

    The Need

    I was faced with replacing a deteriorating multi-level deck on my contemporary style ?deck? house.    While replacing the deck with the same design was an option,   I was painfully aware that the original deck design had limitations and therefore was never
    really put to use by the family.     I could not see investing significant money into a design that would ultimately
    be of little practical value.    I had a general idea for type of improvements I would like to see over the original
    design.   A screened in area to provide protection from the mosquitoes that invade all summer and drive you back inside
    in early evening was highly desirable.   Outside access to the upper deck level from outside the home was
    desirable since the only way to currently access that level was to go back into
    and through the house.  I also envisioned somehow being able to put the lower level of the deck to better use.   Because there is no real protection from the elements and the space does not receive much light,   it added little value to the outside
    experience.  It was my dream that this space could somehow be protected and made desirable and functional.  

    Turning Dream into Reality

    Being pretty knowledgeable about home improvement was both a blessing and a curse.    For each of the areas that I wanted to address with a new design, I could come up with at least ten different approaches to solving the problem.   I attempted to do a number of design drawings myself,  but was not confident that they could be practically implemented.

    The Search for The Right Contractor

    I realized that this project would, at the very least, require a significant amount of professional help.  
    I consulted with architects and contractors that I had worked with in the past or had come recommended to me.  
    I quickly realized that finding the right contractor would not be easy.   I was able to identify
    contractors that would certainly be able to build your project, but they needed to be told exactly what you wanted done.   
    Since my project had a number of ?moving pieces?,  I didn?t feel comfortable with using any of these contractors without a detailed plan.   I did consider and interview a number of architects in order to solidify my design into a ?shovel ready? project. 
    The cost for the architect would have been significant considering the relatively small scale of the project.   
    While I needed design and planning help, I really wanted to put these funds into the actual project itself.   
    The other realization that I came to was that a project of this size required to be matched with the ?right sized? contractor.   I had spoken with a number of two person contractors and realized that while they had the required skills,   a project of this size would be beyond their comfort zone and take forever to complete.   At the other end of the scale were contractors that were set up for
    doing complete home construction and major remolding.   In this case,   they were too big and not all that
    interested in a project of my size.  

    Finding the Right Fit

    I came upon Creative Remodeling while I was on a walk in my neighborhood.   I noticed that a neighbor?s
    deck was being rebuilt and liked what I saw as I observed their progress of the next couple of weeks.   I reached out to
    Creative Remodeling and requested a quote on my basis project.   John Parent, owner of Creative Remodeling,
    responded promptly.    John came over to see me on a Saturday in order to accommodate my schedule.     John
    listened to my basic requirements, a ?like for like? deck replacement, and said that he would provide me with a detailed price quotation within the next couple of days.    I felt that it was important to develop a baseline for the cost of the project by picking this simplest design and that it would allow provide the opportunity to evaluate John?s approach to the project, his flexibility, his cost and whether he was someone that I would be able to work with.   John came back as promised with his detailed quote. 

    Initially, I had a bit of sticker shock. But after carefully reviewing John?s approach to the project,   getting educated regarding the new zoning requirements for outdoor structures and evaluating the quality of the materials and workmanship,   I considered the price
    to be consistent with the value that John and his company would be providing.   I also felt that Creative
    Remodeling had the right ?domain expertise? in the area of deck construction.    Where decks where once just an add on to a house, they have now become significant structural additions and the new building codes now reflect this. In short,  I could not do a ?like for like? replacement of the deck as it would not meet current building codes.  It would require a re-design at a minimum.

    In making my selection, I also felt that the size of John?s company was ideally suited for a project of this size.    John has about
    eight full time employees that make up the core group of his company.   He is able to expand manpower and pull in specialized resources with contractors that he has worked with over the years when required.  Having this size workforce
    becomes important to keeping the project on schedule.   Although I did have a dedicated team working on my project, interruptions tothe project inevitably come up.  They can be weather related, another customer that needs some immediate attention, etc.  
    John has enough flexibility built into his workforce and schedule that he can be responsive to his customer base, while at the same time meet the needs of current projects.  His team was willing to even work on Saturdays in order to keep the project on track.

    John also separates what you are paying in labor from the materials required for the job.   So much so, that a homeowner is able to
    purchase the materials directly with John?s suppliers at a very fair price.    This insures the homeowner that
    there is no mark up in the price of the materials.  This openness is just how John operates.   I found that refreshing and knew that I
    could trust John to keep to his agreement regarding all aspects of the project. 

    The Design

    Once I made the decision to use Creative Remodeling, I then introduced the new design elements that encompassed my vision of the completed project.   One of the big advantages in working with John is that he has a degree in structural engineering.   This plus the fact that he has great design skills makes it possible to take on a project like this without necessarily
    need to bring in an architect.    My project went through at least two to three major design revisions.   Realizing my vision turned out to be an iterative process.   Sometimes new ideas emerge once you have solidified a design.   John was always enthusiastic about looking how to get me what I had envisioned, while at the same time trying to keep the project with the scope of
    cost targets that were established as the project progressed.   

    The Construction

    Once we had what we felt was close to the final design,   John was able to take care of all the necessary permits and approvals required for the project.   Because John has a great professional relationship with the building inspector in town,   all of his designs were approved with a minimum of revision.   All of the subsequent inspections by the building department went flawlessly. 

    John was never reluctant to take on a new design challenge.   I ended up deciding to add a spiral stair case to improve access to the upper deck.   John had never installed on of these but was willing to take it on.   In order to have the staircase fabricated properly there are a number of critical measurements and calculations that must be communicated to the fabricator.  John hit a bulls-eye with all of these specifications.   The staircase was manufactured exactly right and installed as if John had been doing these staircases all his life.  Having complete confidence in this aspect of a project is extremely important.   There
    are so many other areas that the homeowner needs to pay attention to;   you really don?t want to be worrying about something
    like this.  

    On any project,   some things don?t go exactly has planned.  Mistakes are made, both by the homeowner and the contractor.   I found that John was always fair in sorting these things out.   If something didn?t go as planned on his end, he took care of it, 
    no questions asked.   If I made a mistake in my instructions or wanted to change something in mid-stream, John
    always worked with me to minimize the potential cost impact while making sure that I was getting exactly what I wanted. 

    John?s communication during the project is excellent.   He will check in with you daily,   review the work for the week ahead,  summarize the work that has been done and remind you of anything he needs that you are responsible for. You are never in
    the dark about what is going on.  John will answer any question that you have in as much detail as you would like.   If you question something, he doesn?t take that as an insult, but instead will take the time to make sure you completely understand why something is being done in a certain way.    In my case, because I really wanted to know
    all the details,   having someone that was happy to explain things made it a great working relationship.  

    The Outcome

    In the end,   my deck replacement project resulted in a new multi-level composite deck, access from the outside to the top deck,  a beautiful three season room with both heat and AC,   and an under deck area that was completely weather proof.    The deck structure was redesigned to have a more contemporary footprint and now blends seamlessly into the rest of the house.    The workmanship,  design,  and implementation of this project exceeded my own original vision and provides great new indoor and outdoor living space.


    - Raymond P.
  • Mike and his crew did a great job.  He was very responsive to my requests and put up with us changing our minds on the tub during the reno.  I am very pleased with the finished product.
    - Kristen M.
  • Dan was so great to work with. The project was postponed due to issues with the tenants, and Dan was completely flexible and understanding. He was able to fit us is as soon as we were able to move forward, and he was pretty efficient in getting it done, with one exception that was a bit beyond his control. he was always kind and helpful on the phone and gave really good advice.
    - Amber T.
  • The men they sent were great.  They showed up on time, worked neatly and cleanly and were very courteous.  When the door first came, John  Canty came over to tell me personally that the manufacturer sent the wrong color for the cladding and how they were going to rectify this problem.  They installed the wrong door as a temporary measure and reordered the door immediately.  As soon as it came in, they set up a new appointment and again showed up on time and the work was done neatly and cleanly.  
    Throughout the process they kept in touch with me via email to let me know the status.  And, their price was fair.  I got 3 estimates and every one was higher.  I even got estimates from Home Depot (who were horrible) and Lowes (who told me that they could not match the price).
    I plan on using Canty Brothers again for other work.
    - Sandra L.
  • It did not turn out so good. The company and the owner were very good. We liked them very much and we had great conversations, but they sub-contracted out to a number of other folks and the work just was not of the best quality and we had to have a lot of things re-done and fixed. We still have issues. Not having done this before we wouldn't have signed-off and paid the installments if we had really seen what the work was and if we had been more educated. Things started going wrong after we were all done with the project. So we're not happy. The price was really good and they were responsive. Their punctuality was good.
    - Richard Z.
  • Al came over promptly with the materials and installed the wires before the forecasted snowstorm.   When the ice dam problem first appeared a few weeks ago he and his helper shoveled off the roof within 24 hours and hooked up a temporary wire until a more permanent installation could be done.
    Al has also replaced many windows  and doors in our home, and was general contractor for roof replacement, and interior repairs including plastering and lighting.  
    His prices are fair and his work is professional.   I will definitely call him again.
    - Jan D.
  • COMPLETION TIME: The first-floor powder room was completely remodeled first. It took several weeks longer than expected and pushed back the rest of the remodeling project. As a result, ABRN had to stop work for a week while we were away on a trip. The remodeling of the two second-floor bathrooms took twice as long as planned, (4+ months). We were forced to postpone other work planned with another contractor for the exterior of the house. COMMUNICATION: As the remodeling progressed, communication between ABRN, its vendors, subcontractors and us went from fair to poor. We were sent at least one daily email at different times of the day (both during and after normal working hours) summarizing changes in that day’s activities or the next, so it was necessary to check our email throughout the day. I suggested they call us, but the emails continued most of the time. It was not an efficient way to exchange information. During the remodeling of the first bathroom we were home unpacking and setting up the house each day, so ABRN’s activity changes were not a problem. However, once the other bathroom work began, we began to make appointments and run errands, so we were not always be available to accept and store delivered goods or to let in contractors and town inspectors. Adding to our frustration was the frequent changes in schedule which wasted a lot of our time. For example, the plumber showed up the day before we were told to expect him to do his work. Twice I had to call ABRN to see where the wallpaper hangers were, when they were an hour or more late. We wasted two full days at home, waiting for an inspector who never showed up (no explanation was ever given to us by ABRN) and a fixture delivery that was a day late. Finally, we told ABRN that we were unable to remain at home or change our plans to accommodate last minute rescheduling or no-shows. It surprised us that ABRN seldom seemed to know that a delivery problem or contractor delay had occurred, until I called them. From our point of view, there was ineffectual monitoring of the details of the project. POOR PLANNING/QUALITY CONTROL: Quality control became an issue when the first bathroom was “completed”. I noticed several problems: numerous bubbles had formed under the surface of at least 50% of the wallpaper, the window trim had not been completely repainted and the new sink did not hold water. Had someone checked off a punch list, ABRN would have found these problems before I did. ABRN took care of the omissions, but we wasted more time having ABRN fix the problems.
    Surprisingly, the same type of oversight continued to occur during the balance of the project. For example, several of our bathroom fixtures and wallpaper samples were not ordered promptly –ABRN should have confirmed that the vendors had placed the orders promptly and checked their status to avoid delays. The wrong caulk was used to seal one bathroom shower ceiling seam – it had to be replaced. One whole set of bathroom fixtures was ordered in the wrong finish. They were delivered to our house, unchecked by ABRN. Since they could not be installed, their replacement caused another delay. The wrong type of toilet-to-wall connecting pipes were delivered to our house. Again, no one had checked them prior to delivery. Door hinges for one shower were delivered in the wrong finish and had to be reordered. Installation of new doorknobs and caulking around a bathroom sink were not done until I reminded ABRN that it needed to be done. The positive aspects of our association with Alicia and Richard Nardo and their associates were that they are very willing to take time to discuss matters with their customers, particularly Alicia who graciously took me to several supply houses and a decorating center to help me pick out fixtures, wallpaper, marble and tile. In addition, when a problem arose or a mistake was made, they stood behind their work and rectified the situation to our satisfaction. Their employees and subcontractors were neat and courteous. The replacement of the deck and balconies went smoothly and was finished on schedule and without issue: the materials were ordered, delivered and installed without damage or delay, and with no additional costs. We were ultimately satisfied with ABRN’s finished product. But, although none of the problems discussed here was serious, the frequency with which they occurred and the additional time required to correct them adversely impacted the efficiency of the project and inconvenienced us more than we feel was necessary. Our past remodeling projects have taken only an extra week or two to complete. For these reasons, we would not hire ABRN again.
    - Kathy M.
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