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Specialized Services reviews in Maple Plain

  • A
    They have provided prompt service and the house has looked great. If lights come down due to weather they are here to repair the problem within a day or two. They also take them down in a timely fashion
    - Steve B.
  • D
    Preamble: I purchased my home from a party who had a new roof installed by All Star in October 2013. The home was purchased in August of 2014, and was specifically advertised as having a brand new roof among a few other things. The following account is factual and objective. I am trying to check my feelings toward All Star and focus on the full consumer experience. December 2014: Had the scuttle attic completely re-insulated (blown and spray foam) -- including the area by the chimney. All work inspected by my municipality. June 2015 (less than 2 years after install of the new roof): During a remodel in our home, we witnessed some new and historic water staining to the drywall being installed near the hearth of our home. Some of this staining was new from a rainstorm we had the day before, and other was more historic -- from previous roof issues relating to water. I pulled permitting records and found All Star did the roof back in 2013. I contacted them to come out and inspect the roof for leaks. All Star came and stated that they believed the chimney to be the culprit -- recommending that it be sealed in mortar cracking. Sealing was completed shortly thereafter. June 2016 (less than 3 years after the new roof was installed): I was having 2 different plywood pieces of soffit replaced, and noticed quite a large area of dry rot under the soffit once it was removed (this dry rot was directly below the historic drywall staining I mentioned earlier). A couple joists were rotten and not structurally sound, and some of the decking was rotten as well. There was some restorative work done to the decking, but the rest of material should have been repaired BEFORE a new roof was installed since the area was easily accessed. I called All Star and the agent stated that they would look into why that wasn't done (this gentleman was "new" to All Star and that the work predated him). This agent also stated that this "didn't look like All Star quality work". I was then told that the records they had on file showed that the former homeowner had passed away during the install. The agent suspected this was why they didn't address the bad material -- presumably because they wanted more money to address the rotten timber (this is my personal speculation). Since the area was dry and I didn't see any signs of new moisture, I elected to have the person repairing the soffit sister up a couple new 2x4s to strengthen the area and reseal it. Summer 2017: I had the chimney redone by a master mason. All tuck pointing was done above the roof deck. March 2018: I witnessed a small amount of water slowly weeping from the soffit where the dry rot was found in 2016 (under the fascia -- coming from within the roof). It wasn't a great deal of water, but because I knew the area had been of concern in the past, I wanted to have All Star look at it. They came out promptly and took a look at the affected area. They also crawled around in the scuttle attic to see what was evident in that area. After looking for 10-15 minutes, they stated that they thought the attic insulation needed more work done by the fireplace, and that the area may be producing trace amounts of moisture from warmer air escaping into the cold attic in the winter -- in turn causing frost that turns into the small amount of water during melting. They also said it could be as a result of heaving of ice from melt and thaw on the roof itself. The conclusion of that visit was that they would come back and look at the roof once the snow melted (within a week or two), and pull together numbers for what they proposed for insulation work in the event that was the culprit. April 2018: I receive an email quote from All Star with projected costs for tearing off the roof by the chimney, adding in new insulation and rebuilding the roof in the affected area. $4,500 worth of work for a roof that wasn't even 5 years old -- and with a track record of documented historical issues. I point out to All Star my frustration that they're asking for a substantial amount of money without actually confirming the root cause of the problem -- or even visually inspecting the roof free of snow. At this time, I also questioned why the material under the new roof wasn't properly addressed (the historic drywall staining, or the couple rotten 2x4s). This was a clear indication that the area was problematic when the roof was replaced in 2013. AND, if they had the roof off in 2013 when they repaired it and saw this damage, why would they not have addressed this insulation concern then as well?... Even if the consumer decided they didn't want to pay more for the fix, I would think it was a necessary enhancement to avoid a potentially chronic problem. Their response was neither helpful or solution-oriented. They cited that the roof is out of the statutory 2 year warranty mandated by the state, and that the contract was executed with the former owner -- not me. Essentially, they claimed that they owed me nothing as someone who was not party to the original contract (the contract they just argued was already satisfied, since 2 years had elapsed). I stated that this wasn't a satisfactory conclusion, and that I wasn't asking for free work to be done -- just that we (All Star, and the consumer) work together to find an affordable solution where both parties can rest knowing the issue had been addressed properly. After receiving another email shirking responsibility of any kind but stating that they'd be happy to do the proposed work, I stated that I would simply leave my comments with the BBB and other word of mouth. I then received another email from the All Star offices (Jamie) stating that they would no longer even visit the property to talk about solutions. I placed a call to Jamie (and left a voicemail) in hopes that we could still civilly discuss options that don't involve me halfway re-roofing my home 5 years into the "new roof". I received no return call. My experience with All Star was unfortunately not a good one. Even with supporting evidence (dating back to within the 2 year warranty period), and backed by common sense (you don't build on bad materials when you know of an issue -- especially when you have the opportunity to resolve it with a couple pieces of timber and some spray foam), All Star elected to frustrate a consumer instead of helping them find a respectful solution.
    - Joshua A.
  • A
    Steve did an awesome job! He was fast, accurate and always professional. As a real estate investor himself, he helped me think through a strategy around financing my primary residence and securing a line of credit to allow me to move forward with rental home investing. His rates and his service could not be beat! I plan to work with Steve for a number of years as I execute on my strategy to investment in rental homes. Thanks, Steve!
    - TRACY E.
  • A
    Went very well -- Nick was able to help us work with insurance and the whole job was completed in one day. Very great group of people to work with. Nick took time to show us samples of shingles - he even got on the roof to lay them out for us to see. Very nice to work with and our new roof looks great!
    - Sarah O.
  • A
    Let me start with a perspective, then the essence of the work Tony and team did for me. I'm an experienced homeowner, and I've done a LOT of projects on my own as well as hiring out projects to large and small contractors over time. I'll simply say the whole process of working with Tony, Nick and the installation team was as good as it gets! Tony worked the whole process, from inspection, estimating, meeting with me & my insurance adjuster, through to the completion of the job, final clean-up and collecting payment. Literally, it was a great process. I'm an informed, experienced, reasonable, and demanding buyer. I expect people to know their business, communicate well, do what they say they are going to do, and when things don't go as planned, fix any problems and be honest through the whole process. Tony was on top of the project from the beginning. He handled himself like a pro. He knows what he's doing and knows when to bring in his teammates. Nick helped him out with the inspection, meeting with my insurance adjuster, and doing a full drone flyover photo process for the production team. (That was pretty cool BTW.) Most of all, the most important things on a project like this are to get the schedule and estimate right. Get the roof torn off, then installed right, and cleaned up very well. Simply put, they did. The weather helped out nicely, but the coordination was perfect too. The dumpster was on-time the day before and the crew was on-time the next day. They were fast, thorough, attentive to details (Like flashing, painting existing metal parts to match, and clean, straight rows and edges) and a very thorough clean-up. Then the dumpster pick-up and final clean-up done the next day. I can't ask for more than that. The whole job, almost 40 squares on the house and garage was done on-time, done well and cleaned up nicely. Roofing is a very messy job, and it's easy to have landscape damage, and lots of detailed clean-up issues. Like wrappers, nails, bits of shingles left over. I gotta say I was impressed. The site was very clean and no obvious damage top my landscaping. Sure, I found a few bits of wrappers and shingle pieces around, but seriously, I expected to find a whole lot more. It was a great clean-up job! I was both pleased, and impressed. Roofing might not be rocket science, but I'll say, it's no accident when a contracting team gets it this right. It takes competent, capable people and a lot of hard work. It's no accident, these guys are really good at what they do. I'd definitely use Smart Builders again, and do recommend them as a great roofing service company..
    - Michael A.
  • A
    I called and she diagnosed my problem over the phone for $25 (didn't know that was a service option, but that's definitely something I'll be doing again).  Then I ran up and picked up the part from her for $25.  She was fantastic and so friendly.  She even encouraged me to do the work myself instead of like other providers who want to try and nickel and dime you.
    - Mark M.
  • A
    I called this morning early and left her a voice mail. She promptly responded, and was super helpful. I gave her the model, serial number and details of the issue. She then did some research about the part, etc. and called me back. She came PREPARED with the part which is priceless! and fixed it! will get her again and refer her. 
    - Judith M.
  • A
    We had a very dim living room and hallway area which we were looking to lighten up.  We found out about Solatubes from a recommendation of our roofing contractor.  After doing research we were impressed to find out they also offer light kits so light bulbs could be installed in them making them useful in the evening as well as during the day.
    We chose to have a free initial consultation at our house to get advice on how many Solatubes we would need and what size they should be.  The amount of light each size tube would produce was explained to us, along with how the light kits would work.
    The actual installation only took a couple hours.  The installer gave us excellent advice on placement of the Solatubes to maximize the coverage of light between the four of them.  After the installation he vacuumed and cleaned up the area great.  Because we wanted to switch around the existing light switches the light kits would be hooked up to, we had to hire an electrician separately to install the light kits at a later date.  The installation was no problem for the electrician.
    We've had the Solatubes for 7 months now and love them!  They have made a world of difference!  Right from the start it was amazing how much light comes through them, even on cloudy days.  During the day there are still times when I do a double-take and think the lights are turned on when it's actually just the sun shining through.  Our dark hallway with no windows has the most notable improvement -- no more turning on the hallway light during the day as it is filled with light all day now!  In the evening the amount of light the light bulbs produce is great too.
    We highly recommend Solatubes as a great solution to a dim living space!
    - Sarah S.
  • A
    We had a great experience working with Craftsmen Home Improvements!  From our initial consultation to preparing for the work to start to the work being done, everyone was very helpful and professional. 
    During our initial meeting Jim impressed us with his knowledge of what was wrong with our defective shingles and how the new ones would be better quality and last longer.  We also wanted some other items taken care of from a home energy audit report.  They had no problem helping us with the list including: coordinating an electrician to replace 2 bath fans that weren't the correct type, fixing fan venting, and adding attic insulation & sealing.
    We were very impressed with how organized the whole process was and how clean they kept the yard during the job and when the job was complete.  The work was done over a period of 5 days due to shorter Fall days and having the work fall over a weekend.  We didn't mind, though, and were impressed that the team stayed until sunset each day to get it done as soon as they could.  Our roof looks great and we're very happy with their work!
      
    - Sarah S.
  • D

    There is not enough room here to write all the details.  WE love our new deck, but the H*** we had to go through with the miss communication with our salesman was a nightmare.  I guess I have learned...GET EVERYTHING in writing before anything begins.  Also, they charged us over $300 for the permit.....checked with the City, it only costs $75....what a HUGE mark up that is....Also, was told it takes a couple weeks to obtain the permit as it is out sourced by the city (that's what Jerry told us)  When I called the city to question it....they laughed, said you can get then within a day.  Again Jerry apologized for the miss communication....I wonder if he has a recorded message that says those words as I think he told us at least a dozen or more times.  I understand mistakes happen, miss communication can happen, but this many times with the same person....really????  Also, we asked to have our deck cleaned as they left it s

    o full of mudd....Jerry said well, they tried to be careful and clean it up .....well the way it is.....there was no attempt on cleaning it.  He said he would hire a contractor to come out and professionally clean it for us....well that company called me yesterday and asked me how I would suggest he clean it as he has never cleaned a deck before and did we have cleaning supplies to clean it with...REALLY... and not to mention the mess they left for us to clean uo.  ALL of the dirt from the pylons was left in one big huge pile in our yard for us to do something with, not to mention all the nails all over our yard and driveway....needed to replace a tire on our lawn tractor due to a nail and a car tire repaired due to a nail picked up in the driveway.

    Might use Allstar again but will never want to deal with Jerry ever again.  If he were the only sales rep....I wouldn't deal with Allstar at all.


    - Joy R.
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