Initially thought we had found the perfect contractor, - architect, engineer and contractor. What could go wrong? From the get go we explained that we had not had very good luck with other jobs done in the house and wanted everything done by the book. He assured us that it would be and , well, we had it on paper too- the contract.
Everything began very quickly, we kept asking how come the permit wasn't displayed when they had begun digging...the answer as always.. in Amr's notorious arrogant way, was that he knew what he was doing, not to constantly question him.
The fact is, the permit wasn't actually submitted until the underpinning had already been done!
Then there were the issues with the plumbing.. horrible smell constantly from the bathroom... well turns out, after having redone all of our plumbing in the basement and replacing lead pipes from the city, adding sump pump and backflow etc..there was NO permit! Which also meant that we would not qualify for thousands of $ worth of rebates he had promised the city would reimburse us .
The labourers didn't speak english, and although mostly polite, were really messy and totally inconsiderate when it came to sealing up the areas they were working in, which meant constant blankets of dust everywhere and using our Dyson vacuum to clean up their construction mess. Not to mention that we were subjected to noise and debris from 0800-2000 mostly Mon-Sat....they worked hard, but it was difficult to live with.
There isn't one thing that we are happy with!!!
I had complete protected our $1700 bathtub because I saw the way they worked, by the end of the day they had totally removed the protection and managed to damage it considerably ...totally preventable! We were also concerned with the bathtub not being level, he said we were being nit picky- now water collects on that lower corner and there is mold build up!
After removing the protective plastic off our new maple steps, they walked allover them with dirty construction boots leaving permanent greasy stains on the steps!
We payed over $3000 to upgrade from oak to maple for the stairs and railing, but as you can clearly see from foto, there are mixed woods (we had another carpenter confirm this).
The rough-in for the toilet was never capped during the reno, so the black pipe was filled with debris- cement, glue and even insulation ...after the toilet was installed it kept overflowing , was always backing up for the first year, we suggested it was because of all of the buildup in the pipe, he suggested it was the $300 toilet we had purchased! Really?!
the pipe coming up from the sump pump in the basement was directed out to the back through an old dryer exhaust hole in the wall and just stuck out 6".from the wall (towards our neighbour's wall).. with the space around it not filled.. Again expressed our concerns..nothing done and we ended up with a rat infestation - a scary nightmare!
Tiles that were incorrectly laid - didn't use notched trowel- just plopped a bit of adhesive/cement ...
So many irregularities, but more importantly numerous items not done to code...
WE were concerned about the upper walls of the basement not being parged as they were damaged during the reno and seemed to be crumbling, they did nothing about it, and well we have a lot of bugs in a new basement, I am sure they are coming in through holes in the old masonry..as well as super cold in the winter!
We had opted to finish the basement floor ourselves, so all we asked for was a level smooth flat surface... once again too much to ask for... it was so uneven we had to raise the floor by about 4" just to level it out... so much for basement lowering!!
We had to call the city inspector ourselves! Not once did he have the city come over to inspect during the entire renovation!
Everything we questioned him about-well, turns out we had legitimate concerns.
The icing on the cake were the menacing and threatening emails demanding we pay the amount of $4000 owed - when the job wasn't finished, and turns out we have about $20 000 worth of work which has to be redone to meet code and repair/replace materials.
What a nightmare! The only positive thing that came out of this was the fact a lost a little weight from all the stress!!LOL!!
You may think all of these things are minor, but they aren't... they add up to a lot of stress, disappointment, distrust and you are reminded of this horrible experience everyday - because you live there! So, if you don't care about work being done properly or to code and aren't going to live in the house, by all means... they are quick, but in the long run there are a lot of liabilities!!!