1 Element is an attempt by Charles "Chad" Black to re-invent himself and "launder" his company (formerly operating as Virginia Gardens & Hardscapes (VGH) and a more recent name change and fail as Schwartz Industries. They won our business with a low quote, professional act, & pictures (their website & binder shown to us) of magnificent work (not likely theirs) completed on grand estates. The son (front man) played nice/professional until I signed the contract & paid half up front. After that, it was a nightmare. They claimed the project would be done in abt. 1 month but 5 months later, it wasn’t (never was). Random workers haphazardly appeared on site with little/no supervision & no necessary permits were acquired. All work needs to be torn out & redone. Independent engineers/county inspectors agree it’s the worst they’ve seen. These guys are concrete pourers masquerading as a professional landscaping company (regardless of the tale on the website). Month 1 of our project ended with little progress & then they announced a name change to Schwartz Industries. Concerning b/c: a) our contract & supposed lifetime warranty on the work was with VGH, b) why use Schwartz if real name is Black? Clearly an attempt to “launder” the old name due to # of prior upset clients/poor work. We had to chase after them for months for legal docs to prove our contract & warranty would stay valid. Polite inquires about project details, timelines, etc were met with hostile, un-businesslike response (bullying tantrum) from Charles Jr./Chad stating that we did not have the right to ask questions. This treatment evolved into hot-cold-hot-cold, game playing. The father took over as POC to attempt damage control but things did not improve. Son contacted us to admit he had forgotten a small, critical retaining wall in his design but demanded $1,200+ to correct it. When we protested, he used terror tactics and threatened to remove all workers/equipment & leave the huge mess until he felt like returning & at an even steeper financial penalty. We threw them half the money to get work moving again but this just reinforced their belief we were suckers and the games continued. Instead of proper patio top flagstone cheap, thin veneer stone (normally used for walls/indoor applications) was very sloppily layed (with huge, inconsistent spacing) further ignoring our requests & clear instructions provided early on. Repeated pleas for the spacing to at least be corrected, shakedown #2 came – tried to charge us a huge amt. to pull up & correct all the stonework they did wrong. We protested and they just moved forward, setting them permanently in concrete weather we liked it or not (but not even done right-all loose) Finally, sloppy (not to code) set of steps made of cheap, warped, knotty wood slapped onto the deck, refused to meet to walkthrough the project & they just showed up very early one morning, demanded final payment while standing on the still unfinished front steps. I refused to pay until an engineer evaluated the work. We had to contact the police a couple weeks later when they were found trespassing. Pretended to leave when asked to but not trusting them, I doubled back in my car to find their truck backed into driveway with the crew headed into my back yard. When police car pulled up they hurried back to truck and fled. BEWARE! Chad is operating under the new company: 1 element or element - www.my1element.com.