Ours is a typical East York row house, built circa 1910. In late 2014 Fergus and his crew excavated the crawlspace underneath the kitchen down to basement depth and then built new foundation and walls, effectively creating a new basement addition. We are very happy with the new basement space and even happier with the outstanding customer experience working with Fergus and his crew. We would not hesitate to work with Fergus and R-MAC again, and we recommend him highly to anyone about to do a renovation.
Project Details... There were four main activities agreed-to at the beginning: excavating under the kitchen and shoring; building foundation footings and walls; waterproofing the foundation walls; installing a sump pump; and pouring a concrete slab floor in the new space. This project had high complexity, required significant investment, and given the age of the house posed a high likelihood that we'd find surprises – certainly negative ones but maybe some positive ones – along the way that would impact the agreed-to scope, schedule, and budget.
Why we chose Fergus and R-MAC… We had several quotes for the job and all competitors were close, so the deciding factor wouldn’t be price. Several of his peers in the industry had recommended him to us, and that my wife recognized him from TV’s Love It or List It (Toronto) didn’t hurt. But right from the first consultation visit we could tell Fergus was the kind of contractor we needed – not transaction focused, but solution focused.
Outstanding customer experience... Fergus repaid our confidence in kind. When the inevitable old-house surprises happened, Fergus helped us navigate what to do next, just as we had hoped. For example, when the excavation uncovered a problem with the window well drain, we agreed with him the right thing to do was to add this to the scope of the basement addition’s drainage system. And as he advised, we agreed to install a back flow preventer for our sewer pipe (for which the City of Toronto gave us an 80% rebate), and upgraded the surface of our driveway – two non-project items that would have been prohibitively expensive had his crews not already been onsite. On the other hand, he also advised us against contracting him to frame the new room for us, recommending instead we do that work ourselves (which we eventually did).
Professionalism… At every step Fergus and the crew were all very professional. They made the financials predictable and painless. They kept my wife and I well informed throughout. They did high quality work. They managed timely city permit inspections. They even beat the original schedule despite additional agreed-to scope. And – critical to my maintaining good relations with my neighbours – they kept the job site tidy and safe.
If you treat renovations like a transaction, best for everyone if you go elsewhere. If you want a partner for good renovation outcomes, go to Fergus and R-MAC.