About 6 months ago I used homestars to get recommendations for a carpenter to rebuild our staircase. I took comfort from the positive reviews when hiring Charlie's Carpentry Services. We had a very negative experience that I want to share so the next person in my shoes has the full picture.
In the beginning we had a very positive view of Charlie, who demonstrated great knowledge of his craft and worked with us to find solutions that met our needs.
By the time of install, we saw the other side. When the parts were delivered, our staircase that was meant to be solid oak and maple was substituted with poplar (a cheaper alternative) without our knowledge. Once we realized, we were able to reach an understanding and I chalked it up to a simple misunderstanding.
After day 1&2 of our install, things were coming together ok. While there was a big squeak in the middle steps, I was assured this was just rubbing and would go away. Terms of our deal called for a 50% deposit and 50% on final completion. I offered to pay half of the remaining balance ahead of time. Big mistake, the quality of work went way downhill. The last day on install was a totally different story. We came home to a filthy worksite, and a slap job of the remaining work, it was obvious this was low priority and had been hastily completed. The banister and newel post were not attached properly. When we brought it up to him that if it's in this shape now, it will only get worse, he agreed and offered to come fix it. And then he changed his story and said it was "to code" and that should be good enough for us. We could visibly see why it wobbled, the anchor he had used had glanced off the side of the floor joist but he refused to acknowledge this. The squeaking stairs have only gotten worse. Things escalated from there to borderline ridiculous, he refused to take our phone calls and abandoned the job. Now we are in the process of having to find somebody to come in and fix half the job. Not impressed and not worth the headache. I’m tempted to give a zero star rating because of the nightmare of the process but to be fair, we do have a usable set of stairs. I would not wish this ordeal on anyone else, buyer beware.