This star review is not a reflection of the workmanship itself, because we never managed to get to that stage, so I can't comment from personal experience. This company was recommended by a good friend of mine who is very satisfied with the work they did for her.
This IS, however, a review of the absolute lack of customer service, the inability to communicate efficiently and clearly, and the 8-month long runaround that resulted in us finally pulling the plug on the ordeal of trying to get our front yard and driveway landscaping done - till next year! Because at this point they've wasted our whole spring and summer season. They're also refusing to give my deposit money back, so I have paid $2k for this review alone.
I contacted Elcon in January 2021 to book the job for early spring and David was sent out to work out our quote. I was well aware that the pandemic would make scheduling of jobs and supplies an issue. Which is why I started early enough to try and get an early spot and the stone lined up. I was clear from the beginning that the TIMING (spring completion ) of the job was my primary concern and that I was willing to compromise on the finishes. At first I was told they'd try to get us scheduled for late April to mid May, depending on some friends & family jobs they were doing. Then it got moved to late May because our chosen stone was "unavailable". So we asked for an alternate option and went with a stone that was "available" - only to later find out that when we're told It's available that means not that it's in stock but that it is theoretically available to be ordered, somewhere out there in the world... so when once again I had to contact David to inquire about the status, I was told that the start date will probably be later in the summer, and that he'll let us know when exactly - based on availability of other supplies. Depending on the conversation it was anything between the main stone, the accent stone, the retaining wall parts, the corner stones, etc. I've honestly lost track of all the things that we were "waiting for"...
So late May became June... And every time I had to be the one to initiate contact to find out the status of the job... and every time the timelines kept getting moved out because something was missing and we were waiting for parts. Also, during every phone conversation I had with David, I restated that my priority was to get the job done ASAP so that it wouldn't coincide with the kitchen reno that my husband and I were undertaking ourselves in July, AND so that I can actually enjoy the front yard in the summer (and see how the grass, stones, asphalt and new tree take during the summer and fall seasons).
Except for the suggestion of swapping out the stone for the "available" version, there was no other talk of compromise, of alternatives, of suggestions for what CAN be used and done with the materials that were clearly very much available (theoretically and practically) for all the other jobs that this company was extremely busy completing during the months of April, May, June, July, early August... 0 communication, 0 alternatives, 0 options... Just delays, excuses and the "blame it on the pandemic" game...
We completed our kitchen reno at the end of July (with all the standard pandemic delays and missing materials and creative thinking necessary in order to accomplish that) - and STILL nothing about the missing retaining walls... So I contacted David again - and he informed me that the retaining wall was in! How wonderful! But they didn't have the corner stones (which they would have to make themselves?) and also our "available" stone back from May was going to come in mid August. WHAT? When would they start then? - They were just finishing up another job but then ours will likely be next, or not, depending on the materials...
And that was the last straw!! After 8 months of this back and forth - and almost 5 months of usable landscaping season gone - I had finally had it and I asked for my $2k deposit back. After I sent that message, they were going to come "next Tuesday" to start the work. I couldn't deal with this anymore and I asked my husband to take over and get our deposit money back. We were planning on using the same company next year for the backyard landscaping, but I wasn't willing to go through this ordeal AGAIN next year. My trust was at absolute zero. After multiple phone calls and a yelling match between David and my husband (and me at the end, because I just couldn't listen to it anymore and sit idly by) - David refused to give our deposit back because it covers his "planning time" and because he's supposedly out of pocket now for the ephemeral supplies that have now materialized as soon as I asked for my deposit back. He also kept quoting how he told me in late June that the materials will be in in August over texts, totally refusing to acknowledge anything that I had said to him about the timing and alternatives during our phone conversations. He also insisted that the reason we weren't being updated on the status (except when I expressly asked) was because we "didn't understand landscaping" - which, fair enough, I DON'T! This is why I was willing to hire professionals and pay them over $20K to do that job for me and let me know where my money is going! One thing I DO understand, though, is that this is no way to treat customers, if you intend to keep them... It's not my job as your customer to have to stay on you like a crazy girlfriend and practically have to BEG you to take $20K of my money for 5 months.
This was a horrible experience!! The whole spring and summer season have been wasted with nothing to show! There is no communication, there is no customer service, there is absolutely no creative thinking and willingness to suggest workarounds or provide alternative options. I refuse to believe that one can miraculously find ALL the materials to start and complete all jobs from April to early August for all other customers - and that none of those other people had at least some of the component pieces necessary for our job... Ours is definitely NOT a large property.
DON'T TRUST THIS COMPANY AND DON'T PAY ANYTHING UNLESS YOU CAN SEE THEIR TRUCKS AND EQUIPMENT PULLING UP IN FRONT OF YOUR HOUSE READY TO BREAK GROUND!!!
If you still decide to work with them for whatever reason make sure ALL of your communications are FULLY documented - and record any phone calls. David will try to use the he said/she said tactic and will rely solely on text messages (ignoring any information that was exchanged in phone calls or in person).