THIS RESPONSE MUST BE READ!
Why were we not surprised to expect this kind of review from this client?
We highly appreciate clients providing reviews on homestars.com and truly believe in this site, the opportunities it provides and how it is has been a great facilitator in bringing positive change to the industry. The one drawback we have just experienced through your review is that it opens the door to comments that are sometimes misguided, unqualified and simply personal and have no direct relevance to the actual quality of work. This directly affects the livelihood of our business and as you can appreciate, something we strongly feel has to be defended.
People have a right to their opinion and please allow us to share ours with regard to our experience with Michael and Andrea of Unionville.
We would like to start by expressing how very happy we were with the results of the master bathroom. Thank you for allowing us to take photos upon completion that showed the beauty of the finished product. We would also like to thank you for the several recommendations you gave our company to your friends and colleagues. If you were as dissatisfied with our work as you are now claiming, we highly doubt the recommendations would have followed.
We are also very disappointed, and highly surprised that you did not take advantage of your contract terms with us that included a 2 year workmanship warranty. The final deficiencies that you have shown in these photos were not brought to our attention, other than through this online review. We also did not expect that you would have to correct them yourselves. We should have had the opportunity to discuss these issues with you first and “make it right!” At no time prior to this review did we receive a call or email from you outlining these specific items. Let’s be fair, any contractor would have expected this from their customer and would likely not stand by their guarantee if you did your own repairs.
With regards to the photos of the shrinkage in the grout and on the door trim, based on scale, these cracks appear to be very small, maybe a few inches at most in size. Any builder or renovator will agree there is usually some minor movement or settling of construction materials after work has been completed.
In this instance, the wood door casing has a certain degree of moisture content and if that degree of moisture content changes, shrinkage and swelling may occur. Shrinkage occurs as moisture content decreases, while swelling takes place when it increases. This can also cause framing to expand, contract, twist and warp causing slight joint cracking and screw pops in drywall. You also had a steam shower installed which adds to the excess moisture if the fan is not used often or long enough.
In most cases, this shrinkage and swelling can be controlled buy a good quality prep and paint job. You chose to handle the painting portion of this job. Although painting is not generally our responsibility, we always follow up after this process to ensure that all touch up and seals are completed properly as it directly affects the appearance and performance of our own finished work. Since you were handling the painting yourselves and did not allow us this follow up, we did not have the opportunity to rectify the deficiencies created by the prep work.
In reviewing the highlights of our email exchanges, these comments from you appeared; “our price was the most reasonable”, we provided “great input and suggestions”, our workers were “conscientious and took pride in their work”, you were “satisfied with our methodology explanations”, “progress was looking good”, “tile work going well”. There did not appear to be any comments that would lead to this low of a rating, which is puzzling. It would have been in our best interests to have immediately rectified the situation had we been aware of any problems or concerns. We have been successful in business far to long to have ignored something like this. Our strong ratings have demonstrated that we consistently deliver on quality and service.
With regard to the change controls, let’s take a look at the bigger picture. We provided you with numerous extras at no charge (drawings and electrical layouts, pewter register cover, extra insulation, upgraded supplies and services just to name a few) which we are sure you are thankful for. We were also consistently browbeaten over the extra charges we did present. In addition, for the change controls you requested, you still refused to pay or took an exceptionally long time to pay. We gave you the benefit of our trade discounts for items you were completing yourself and took the time to coordinate, plan and negotiate for sub-trades you felt we did not deserve our mark up on. We also did not charge you for the relocation of the vanity to the proper position after Olympic kitchen (your “excellent” supplier) had installed it in the wrong location and for the pick up, loading and delivery, including a 1 ½ hour wait from York Fabrica (your “excellent” supplier) for the vanity top they felt they did not need to deliver for you themselves.
The comment regarding the questioning of our methodology is also a unfair. You hired us based on our experience, expertise and ability to deliver on time and most importantly at a highly reasonable price. Having to stop production on a regular basis to answer inquires on our methodology was frankly not something we priced in our contract. So our apologies if we found this to become annoying and time wasting for our crew. We were always polite and did our very best to work around this and go the extra mile for you. We did not realize this type of understanding was going to be important for you when we negotiated the contract, otherwise we would have taken this into account in the price. Perhaps that is one of the key reasons why the other contractors were priced higher.
We have no doubt Mr. Holmes would tell you that not only did you get a high end, good quality job, but you got a good deal on it as well. We would also challenge you to invite the Mike Holmes show to your home to view our workmanship and allow us the opportunity to answer any criticism of our work and finish quality.
We are all firm believers in the construction bible that Mike Holmes preaches from. We encourage all of our new employees to watch his and other similar shows to further educate themselves on the real issues out there in the industry. We can all appreciate that we need to be careful with what we read or see on T.V., things are not always as they appear.
We have also taken the time to prepare a summary of a few trades as recommended on The Mike Holmes show and their ratings as taken from the homestars.com site. In reviewing these statistics, please keep in mind our rating average is currently standing at 9.7. We are proud to say it was a 9.9 and now with your review of 1.0, it has brought it down slightly.
1. Lowe Painting Rating average 8.5
2. Better Contracting Services Rating average 7.1
3. Adams Door Systems Inc. Rating average 7.3
4. Barmac Garage Door Rating average 1.0
5. Brent Harper Window and Door Rating average 5.0
6. Brian Chimney Service Rating average 4.1
7. Complex Paving Ltd. Rating average 1.0
8. Danmac Plumbing Service Rating average 7.4
9. Hand Craft Aluminum Rating average 5.0
10. Latitude Counter Tops Rating average 7.8
11. Mr Stucco Rating average 8.3
12. Olympia Tile Rating average 8.2
13. Ontario Power Air Duct Cleaning Rating average 8.0
14. Simply Closets Inc. Rating average 7.5
15. The Floor Shop Rating average 8.9
Without a doubt, we expect viewers of this site to see through your comments and poor review and let our excellent rating and photos speak for themselves.
Enjoy your bathroom, it is beautiful. Good luck with any future renovations.
John, Oborne Contracting